It is quite rare I have to correct single statement of Tomi Ahonen to this degree, but due to his Open Letter to Nokia Shareholders I have little choice. Let’s see what Tomi writes:

German weekly newsmagazine Der Stern reviewed the N9 to incredibly glowing ratings, with the astonishing endorsement, that the magazine recommended its readers travel to another country like Switzerland or Austria to buy the N9. Understand, this is not a technology magazine, Der Stern is a general weekly newsmagazine like Time in the USA, yet it chose to review a smarpthone not even sold in Germany and so loved it, recommended readers fly to other countries to go get one.” [1]

Now he has mentioned article of Der Stern before. Some examples:

The German newsmagazine Der Stern loved the N9 so much, it urged German buyers to travel to other countries to buy it” [2]

Meanwhile the German review by Der Stern of the Nokia rival N9 was so glowing, they told their readers to travel to another country to buy the N9 like Switzerland and Austria, it is that much better than what Nokia sold in Germany (Nokia sold the Lumia series but refused to sell the N9).” [3]

German newsweekly Der Stern writing that its buyers should take the trouble to drive to Switzerland or Austria to buy the better N9 instead of the Lumia” [4]

The Germany newsweekly Der Stern advised its readers to drive to Switzerland and buy the N9 with MeeGo instead of the Lumia.” [5]

Somehow the pattern is always that “glowing review” told people “to travel to other country to buy one”. Often “instead of Lumia”. Bad sounding, but unfortunately not true.

Let’s start with Der Stern. It indeed is not technology magazine. It’s a all-topic magazine that people mostly remember from publishing the “diaries of Hitler” that were later proven to be fraud. [6] Der Stern has done its best to recover from that fiasco, so we should not undervalue their N9 review due to that. But why don’t we let all the German speaking readers look at the article? It’s available online! (Reference [7]) Review says phone is fun to use, as intuitive as iPhone and falls behind competition in application offering. I’ll add my (Google aided) translation:

Conclusion: Meego is minimalist, intuitive and well thought out. Those that value individualism above all else and don’t feel apps very important should look at the device definitely – for example, the next time you take a vacation in Austria or Switzerland, where it is officially available.” [7]

So… “As intuitive as iPhone” is “astonishing endorsement”? And apparently telling individualists to look at the device on next vacation to Austria or Switzerland is same as “recommending readers to fly to other countries to go get one“?

For non-Germans: Switzerland and Austria are places where people drive for a vacation or – during winter take a one or two day trip to ski at Alps. It’s like saying “next time you visit larger city, check the shops”.

Oh, the best part? Article does not mention Lumia or Windows Phone at any state, yet Tomi says the magazine “advised its readers to drive to Switzerland and buy the N9 with MeeGo instead of the Lumia“.
So Tomi is exaggerating the news so much it feels incredible. And he has done this since article was published. But let’s look at this part for a moment still:

Der Stern is a general weekly newsmagazine like Time in the USA, yet it chose to review a smarpthone not even sold in Germany” [1]

One would assume that doing technology review is unprecedented in history of Der Stern but as you can see, the review I linked is located in section “Digital -> Phones“. It’s definitely not alone in that section. So yes – Der Stern does technology-oriented articles too. Quite frequently. The fact that N9 is only MeeGo device coming from Nokia – ever – was probably reason enough to get one for testing. And the reporter even referred to “previous Nokia reviews” in beginning of article.
So back to Tomi:

You can hardly ask for a better review ever and this may be the best review of any Nokia smartphone ever given by a mainstream non-technical magazine in any country of all time.” [1]

Having read the actual article [7], previous points taken into account, I wouldn’t call it “best review of all time”. Or if we do, we need to count the Lumia 800 review from Der Stern [8] to be “second-best review of any Nokia smartphone ever given by a mainstream non-technical magazine in any country of all time.”
Nokia has had equally good reviews in the past. For current era, difference to e.g. Lumia 900 reviews from Finland is not all that big that it would justify such an expression.
Of course Der Stern article is a positive review (reporter starts by saying that previously he tried Nokia devices and thought competitors do better, but now wow-factor has returned and it’s from Nokia). Still: it is not doing even half what Tomi says.

So once again fouled-up data. I wonder if Tomi actively reads through magazines and tries to find stuff he could twist to suit his purposes?

(Now if someone wonders where I got the more correct info, it was commented to Tomi’s blog. You know, one of those comments that gets deleted.
I do not delete comments, which obviously pays off since Stefan hinted in comments about Lumia review from Der Stern [8]. That was indeed an interesting addition.)

REFERENCES:
[1] http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/08/open-letter-to-nokia-shareholders.html

[2] http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/05/smartphone-market-shares-after-q1-its-the-digital-jamboree-year-of-smartphone-bloodbath.html

[3] http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/05/the-i-wish-i-had-known-this-list-about-101-things-wrong-with-windows-phone-smartphones-like-nokia-lu.html

[4] http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/03/brutal-truth-about-lumia-cannot-sustain-even-1-to-1-replacement-of-symbian-windows-phone-strategy-do.html

[5] http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/01/last-in-my-trilogy-of-nokia-numbers-postings-re-q4-the-regional-split-what-do-you-do-if-93-of-your-l.html

[6] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Der_Stern

[7] http://www.stern.de/digital/telefon/smartphone-nokia-n9-exotisches-one-hit-wonder-1770646.html

[8] http://www.stern.de/digital/telefon/smartphone-lumia-800-im-test-nokias-lichtblick-1754579.html

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