Calling It In: Sony Ericsson Xperia X10

Calling It In: Sony Ericsson Xperia X10

Sony Ericsson Xperia X1oNAME: Sony Erisson Xperia X10


PRICE: $149.99 w/ two-year contract


FUN FACT: Sony and Ericsson have been making phones together since 2001.


THE BACK STORY: With Europe being Sony Ericsson's primary market, we usually wind up getting its coolest handsets months later. Remember the X1? S.E.'s Windows Mobile powered touchscreen slider was hyped to all hell overseas and trickled to the States over a year later when it was no longer cutting-edge. This time around, for its latest Xperia phone, the X10, Sony Ericsson has ditched Windows Mobile in favor of Google's Android, made the touchscreen bigger, and lost the physical keyboard. But, once again, the phone dropped in Europe over five months ago. Nevertheless, the OS is better, if a little outdated, and the hardware is faster (1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon Processor). We called one in to see how it stacks up against all the other new Android phones. Check out our hands-on review below...

DOPE:

Multimedia presentation: Everything from the graphic-menu animations to the video playback looks stunning on the four-inch high-res screen. The 8 MP camera features up to four resolution options, along with auto-focus and LED flash. Meanwhile, the 720p video recorder captures great, Flip cam-like HD-quality footage. And the upgraded media player is far superior to previous Android models, supporting several video formats (Xvid, DivX, and WMV HD).

User Experience Platform: Sony put some work into creating a stellar and user-friendly social-networking experience. The new Timescape feature combines contacts, messages, and alerts, while also organizing updates in an attractive layout. The Mediascape app consolidates all music, videos, and photos into one area for sharing purposes.

Beautiful Design: The curved back makes it easy to hold, while its minimalist glass front make it easy to look at.

Infinite Button: Didn't you always want one button to do all the work for you? The Infinite Button thinks one step ahead of the user by providing related content for any artist via automated search, pulling YouTube videos and catalog details at your request.

Improved speed: The 1 GHz Snapdragon processor showed no signs of slow down; plus web browsing, downloads, and menu navigation was on point.

Xperia X10

NOT SO DOPE:

Unbalanced touchscreen response: Unlocking the screen and sending messages in portrait mode proves a bit of a chore, with the screen seeming unresponsive. On the flip side, the camera controls were far too sensitive: Pictures would shoot automatically when our finger hovered above the snap button.

Minimal home screens: Warning: Choose App icons and widgets wisely. While most Android phones come installed with seven home screens, the X10 limits itself to three.

Limited email synchronization: Some email accounts, such as Yahoo and Comcast.net, require a manual setup. So unless you're fully aware of your incoming and outgoing server settings, you might find some difficulty syncing contacts and mail.

Outdated OS: For an Android phone that's been on the market for nearly half a year, we expected an upgrade from the integrated Android 1.6 OS. Didn't necessarily need to be the upcoming Froyo OS, but 2.0 or higher would have been great.

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FINAL SAY: While its feature list may not match its strong processor and graphics performance, we found the X10 to be a quality Android phone contender. The phone's biggest draw comes from the addition of the messaging and media-heavy Timescape and Mediascape apps. The curvaceous exterior design molds right into your hands and feels great, and the scratch-resistant touchscreen displays incredible output at a 480 x 854 pixel resolution. In comparison to other Android models, the Xperia X10 might not live up to the Droid or Galaxy S brands, but considering its $150 price tag—it's right on the money.

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Tags: android, android-phones, complex, sony-ericsson, xperia-x10
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