Nokia World 2013- The Finale
Views from the hotel lift and poolClick thumbnail to view full-size
So after a fantastic day and night at Nokia World seeing the presentations, playing with the new products, meeting fantastic people and partying the night away you would expect the final day and packing up to be a little disappointing ? Not so, despite a little sadness that we were attending , potentially, the final Nokia event and that it could be the last time many of us would meet face to face again, there was quite a buzz about the place, people were very impressed with the new products, some had slight hangovers and everyone I was chatting to were keen and excited to be taking advantage of the 'optional' sight seeing tour arranged by the great folk from Nokia Connects & Nokia US namely Paul Coombes, Carla Eid & Jason Harris all of whom had been extremely helpful, sociable and pleasant throughout the whole trip, if they were 'just doing their jobs' they were doing them EXTREMELY well.
I managed to get up early before breakfast on the last day and take a couple of photos of the view from the Dusit Thani before setting off.
Mosque PhotosClick thumbnail to view full-size
Anyway , I for one , wasn't going to travel halfway round the world and not see a bit of the local scenery so I was more than enthusiastic to go and visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the Heritage Village in Abu Dhabi. We were supposed to make an early start, well 9 am, but were a little late due to some people struggling to get out of bed and also someone having to change a pair of shorts for long trousers, there is a dress code in most religious sites I have visited and the Grand Mosque was no different. So after a good breakfast and a twenty minute wait on the coach to visit the Mosque, it is the biggest in the UAE and quite photogenic, which is just as well. I am not sure exactly how many of us were on the coach, but I am pretty sure there were about forty and also pretty sure that almost everyone had a Nokia Lumia 1020, so that Mosque was about to be hit with at least 1640 Megapixels of Nokia photographic technology and power, and if there were slightly less than forty of us I had a Nokia 808 with me as well as my Lumia so contributed 82 Megapixels and also saw a few DSLR's amongst our party so the whole event can definitely be described as a photofest. We did have a guide with us who gave various pieces of local information and advice, but we were given about an hour to wander round the Mosque at our leisure and everyone was impressed with the scale and splendor of the building and between us I think we photographed every square inch of it.
People at the MosqueClick thumbnail to view full-size
Pics Of Heritage Village & SeaClick thumbnail to view full-size
After visiting the grand Mosque we all boarded the coach again to be taken to the Heritage Village, a tourist attraction and museum to show an example of how the people of the area lived prior to the discovery of oil and the massive development in Abu Dhabi, there was also a beach behind the main displays and a decent view of the sea and city skyline, again, another photo opportunity as well as chance to chat with some of the other guys on the trip. After about an hour we all left the Heritage Village and returned to our hotel. People split into groups and made there own arrangements, a few decided to visit Dubai, but after the travelling I had done and the journey ahead I really didn't feel up to a five hour round trip, so gave it a miss. I joined a group including Jason Harris, Lenny Bonsignore and Mark Guim going to visit Nokia World for a final time, when we got there both Mark & I had forgotten our ID badges so had to get replacements to be allowed in by security, but after doing so, we had our last chance to play with the new tech, I managed a few minutes with an untethered Lumia 1520, and also to chat with a few Nokia guys like Tom Messett and Dean Patrick as they began packing up tons of devices and accessories.
A little piece of irony was that the taxi driver who drove us away from Nokia World that final day had a couple of Nokia phones including the classic N95 which Mark Guim moddled for us :)
Taxi from Nokia World
End of the trip
Once we left Nokia World for the final time, the rest of the day was spent mainly relaxing and waiting to travel home, I spent a couple of pleasant and interesting couple of hours at a nearby shopping mall grabbing something to eat and a coffee with Clinton Jeff and Tom Messett and thoroughly enjoyed chatting with them for a while, hopefully not for the last time. As the afternoon turned to night time the numbers of Nokia World folk gradually reduced at the Dusit Thani as people began setting off to the airport to fly to various locations throughout the world. I left about 11.30 pm with Stephen Oiller as we were on the same flight back to Manchester and that was the end of a great adventure for me, it had been exciting , interesting and informative, but most of all happy for me, I loved every minute of it, the travel, the location, the people and the products will stay in a very happy place in my mind for the rest of my life. I really cannot thank Nokia enough for the oppertunities it has given me to use fantastic product, meet great people and see fantastic places and I really hope the Nokia ethos continues with the up coming changes, never has a company motto been more appropriate " Nokia- Connecting People"
Thanks for reading.
PS. Nokia World was not the end of Nokia Products or Launches ! They will be at MWC 2014 in Barcelona and I hope to virually or actually see them there :)