It’s only been one day since Nokia and the Symbian Foundation announced the restructuring of Symbian development, with Nokia now in charge of future software updates, and Nokia’s already talking about a few of its plans for the operating system. Some of the first new Symbian^3 features will focus on text entry, including split-screen text input, an onscreen keyboard compatible with portrait orientation, and adoption of Swype input technology.
Instead of planning for a monolithic Symbian^4 release, Nokia’s now opting to incrementally add features to existing Symbian^3 systems. The company claims that many of these upgrades and changes stem directly from user input, with fifty such improvements due in early 2011.
Another announced Symbian feature that sounds particularly intriguing will be support for Near Field Communication. With compatible phone hardware, and the right software driving it, you’ll be able to use your smartphone as a tap-and-pay credit card, or a proximity-based transit pass. Nokia confirmed that at least its C7 model has that needed hardware, but it sounds like the company won’t really push the software side of things until the majority of its handsets share that compatibility; it’s anyone’s guess when that will be.