The N900 hardware is great, yet nowadays it doesn't stand out. Other companies produce hardware with the same quality. It's the software that makes all the difference.
The Maemo platform should appeal to every nerd and every software developer, as it is based on Debian, and porting applications to it is so simple.
As a result, it is capable of running some truly amazing applications, such as Firefox (including addons) and games that were ported from the PC.
I've set up a dual boot with Android, so I could compare stuff, and access applications that aren't available for Maemo. And although there are quirks in the Android (NITDroid) port, it's successful in providing the full Android experience. And you know what? I don't use it. There's no point in booting into Android when everything can be easily done with Maemo, and sometimes even better (like having a full, real, browser).
The two apps I do miss, though, are Shazam and Waze, and I believe that had Nokia continued developing the Maemo platform, ports of those apps would've become available as well.
Some of the best things I find in the device are:
- Integrated IM/VoIP with Skype/GTalk/MSN/FreeTelecom/Jabber/etc.
- USB Host.
- Really useful desktop gadgets, and not plain icons that represents apps.
- A full, real, browser. Renders everything exactly the way the desktop Firefox does, including flash.
- QWERTY keyboard.
and the list goes on...
So my question to Nokia: why did you stop developing this platform?