While individually each one can stand on its own merits, the guys at Engadget bring up a valid point in the similarity these three devices have with each other. Almost all three phones showcase the same features with only some minor differences in the camera or display. It’s hard to find the rationale behind the release of almost identical devices considering that they will eventually compete with one another for attention in the market. Add the fact that Nokia’s N-series phones aren’t exactly the sexiest pieces of hardware available today; they would be hard pressed to win over new users to their side especially when other phones that are less bulky also brandishing the same feature set.
Then, there’s the problem of the steep price of the N96 which currently stands at a whopping $895. Just as I feared, due to its delayed released, most of its cutting-edge features aren’t really that impressive now. It may have looked pretty enticing back then when it was announced, but in the rapidly changing world of mobile phones, setting a release date that’s more or less 5 months away is like suicide. Unless you’ve got something really ground-breaking and new to offer, it‘s best to get the product out as soon as possible, which is probably the case with the N79 and N85.
Nevertheless, Nokia fanboys will surely have a treat with these trio of phones. The hardest part would probably be deciding which one to get, but based on the pictures, I’d say the N85 has the inside track primarily due to the superb AMOLED display. For more pics, check out Engadget's photo gallery.