It’s no fallacy that the Marketing Agency for startups, Sanfrancisco (of course it’s based in Finland!), nominated Jolla as the sixth best startup among the leading 100 new-born companies across Finland. The mechanism of ranking the startups was based on their performance and online marketing activities. Excluding the only commercial from Jolla that we enjoyed watching some nine months ago, guys at Helsinki haven’t made any new commercial to make tech fanatics to drool yet.
On contrary, the online activity –to a normal extent—is quite admirable. Without compromising or stifling the idea of being Unlike, Jolla is greatly innovative in the online galaxy. To that end, Jolla redesigned its homepage once again. (Happened a few weeks back, but better late to publish our thoughts than never!)
At the first glance, the homepage is elaborated with a great sense of minimalism. Also, since the Sailfish and almost every OS update are somehow related to sea and lakes, it comes no surprise that all the pictures depict this origination from sea. The prominent figure, at first, is the man’s tattooed fingers which to me; he stands for a skilled sailor. That’s how Jolla staffs call themselves, anyway.
Aside from the fingers and the big, familiar Unlike logo, there are some gorgeous design tricks laid beneath the surface. By moving the cursor of the mouse, the picture dribbles it by crawling to the opposite direction. That’s not just it though. The guy’s holding a Jolla smartphone, and if you look closely, he moves his hand toward and outward the supposed camera lens. The guy holds the phone for about five second close to lens then moves it away and holding it for one second at distance. I thought this zooming in and out could only happen when I put the cursor on the phone but, turned out, that this process is repeated all time even if the mouse cursor is somewhere else. This was quite artistic, though, I wanted it to be smarter.
The icons are certainly not ostentatious. They are not lofty in style either, which is traditionally true for Jolla and the Nordic logic. In spite of straight-forward design of the icons, they are amazingly lively. When putting the cursor on an icon, say Live Multitasking, the figure grows at first and then talks to you using simple animations. It’s like that you’re a Field-Marshal asking a soldier to introduce himself. Normally, he would step forward and tell you his name and rank. That is.
The best part of the show is The Other Half section. Basically, TOH makes half of the phone’s skeleton so that’s why this section was designed carefully.
Just below the TOH title, there’s a small cyan bar that tells you to click on it to “switch the other half cover”. By clicking, the current Other Half will be detached and is replaced by a new Other Half with a new color – Pinky red, White, Black or Cyan. Jolla phone looks crazily adorable and thin without an Other Half. Especially those rounded edges and tiny holes at the bottom induce a classy but professional feeling. There’s another way of changing TOH too. Scrolling down the phone, you’ll notice four small circles made with colored dots. Simply by clicking on the circle, TOH will be changed to that color and Sailfish OS will adopt that theme. The circle itself will be filled with that color too. But what made me fascinated in these circles, is that by putting the cursor on a circle, it’ll rotate clock-wise and by moving away the pointer, it turns back to the normal state. Again, to me it looks like a sailor working on his compass rotating it around in order to get the direction. It all makes sense.
ReviewJolla, in a survey on Jolla owners revealed that the majority of them are above normal users but with all that Jolla kept it eternally simple in this new homepage. To that end, there’s a visible stress on tutorials and guidance. Perhaps Jolla is working hard to eliminate the complaints about Sailfish OS complexity when the phone was passed to media for reviews.
There’s a common proverb that says: “The face is the index of the mind”. So in that way, Jolla is absolutely intent on making progress. Still, a new design is quite partial and has impact second to none but for a startup like Jolla, this is welcome news.