VoIP resurrected on the Nokia N95

An easy workaround has surfaced for disappointed owners of the crippled Nokia N95 who want to restore VoIP functionality to the device.

It emerged this week that UK mobile operators Vodafone and Orange are selling the shiny new gadget without an accessible SIP stack that is required to install some VoIP applications.

But can confirm that by taking the device to any Nokia repair centre, many of which are housed in Carphone Warehouse (CPW) outlets, customers can have the firmware re-flashed and the functionality restored.

A CPW repair shop engineer said that as long as the customer had proof of purchase and the phone is still under warranty they will do the procedure for free, even if the device was not bought at CPW.

Unfortunately, Carphone Warehouse engineers have not yet been trained to re-flash the device on site, so they have to send it to Nokia but the representative said engineers would be able to do the job in-shop within a matter of weeks.

The caveat is that re-flashing will restore the phone to its factory default installation, removing any other operator customisation such as Vodafone Live! or Orange World features.

Meanwhile, Dean Bubley over at Disruptive Analysis, has heard that the SIP stack has not actually been removed from the Orange and Voda devices and has instead just been obfuscated. So another, less drastic workaround may be in the pipeline.

Interestingly, the N95 looks to be the first device rolled out under the customisation collaborations announced separately between Nokia and a handful of operators last year. So consumers and businesses buying new handsets can probably expect more of the same in future devices.

So far Vodafone, Orange and T-Mobile have signed up for operator customised variants of the Symbian S60 platform, which allow for standardised menu structures and option across a range of devices. “It could be that Voda and Orange have been a bit heavy handed on the settings first time around,” said Bubley.


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