No phone need a data plan in order to work (rip sidekick). Carriers entice people by saying you need one to get more money and make you think you save more because it's subsidized. Opt out a data plan if you want to. Wifi is an alternative.
N8 was the best camera phone before nokia 808. Nokia phones with carl zeiss optics are top notch when it comes to photo quality from a camera phone. Better if not the best compared to other phone brands in this category.