Please tell me Nokia’s “Tube” has no stylus

Tube02we6There’s quite a bit of buzz around the “Tube”, which is expected to be Nokia’s touch-enabled handset meant to compete squarely with the Apple iPhone. On paper the rumors sound appealing: large touch-screen, quad-band GSM, HSDPA, Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, and camera. The S60 environment should be updated nicely for touch controlling, so it all sounds good.I saw two pics of the apparent device over at Symbian Freak and well… I did freak. Hopefully, the second picture uses a stylus simply to depict the phone’s size, but based on the rounded stylus top that appears to match the round nature of the phone’s corner, I’m concerned. If this phone comes with a stylus, I think Nokia will have missed the boat. Mainstream consumers are still mystified and wary of the stylus. Some people have actually asked me “And what does that do?” when I’ve pulled the stylus on my XV6700, as if it the stylus itself has “features.” “There’s no magical or technical properties”, I tell them. “It’s just easier to tap on the phone.”At this point, the stylus should simply go away on a handheld phone. It’s been successfully proven that with the right user interface, it’s simply not needed on a device with a screen size of 3-inches or less. Again, I’m really hoping that the pic is just for size comparison, but if it’s not, I hope Nokia considers this as constructive feedback. If you’re going to start out in the touchscreen device market: start out right with a touch-optimized UI and lose the stylus.