Friday, April 8, 2011

Nokia N9 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Nokia N9 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test Nokia N9 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test. The mobile phone market is spreading fresh rumors about the latest N Series handset from Nokia, which is the N9. This might come as a surprise too many people as the Nokia N8 was probably the culmination of the Symbian™ based N Series handset from the Finnish company. However, there is no official announcement yet made by the company, but there are some leaked pictures of N9 making there way round several websites.

Nokia N9 smartphone. Announced Not officially announced yet. Features 3G, TFT capacitive touchscreen, 5 MP camera, Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth. Nokia N9 QWERTY Smartphone Review | Specifications. Nokia announced their latest smartphone namely Nokia N9 runs Meego Operating System, We've seen the hardware photos for the mysterious Nokia N9 leaked before, and the N9 is said to be sporting high-end smartphone specs. The Nokia N9 has been leaked and we have the first specs and features for this upcoming Nokia smartphone.

We have also seen the leaked snaps and a got some information about the handset and based on that, we are featuring a preview of the mobile phone. The pictures reveal that Nokia N9 has great resemblance to its predecessor, the N8 Symbian™ device. The keyboard of the handset comes off as a slider just like the N8.

The device will come with dual SIM functionality, which means the users can use the service of two network providers at one time. Entertainment options seem to be great as the N9 will integrate TV-out (720p video) via HDMI, 8 mega pixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics, music player, video playback, stereo FM with RDS and a lot more. In addition to that, the handset will integrate Ovi Maps 3.0, A-GPS support.

At the moment there are quite a lot of speculations going around the market about this rumored N Series mobile phone. However, Nokia is yet to make the official announcement of the device and the release date is not yet known. It is expected that the mobile phone will appear in the European market in the first quarter of 2011.

Here, we are featuring a preview of the Nokia N9 based on the unofficial specifications.

nokia n9 specification

  • 8 Mega-pixel camera with Autofocus, Dual LED Flash, Face Detection, Smile Detection & Geo Tagging
  • Video Recorder with 720p, 25fps with Video Light
  • video Player supports H263, H264, WMV, MP4, XviD & DivX Formats
  • Video & Photo Editor
  • Additional VGA Camera For Video Calls
  • Changable Colour Themes & Customise Home Screen
  • 4 inch Super AMOLED Capacitive Touch Screen display with 16 million colours & 640 x 360 Pixels
  • Music Player Supports WMA, WAV eAAC+ & MP3 formats
  • Album Art Display & Nokia Music Manager
  • Built-in RDS FM Radio with FM Transmitter
  • MP3 & WAV Ringtones
  • Vibration Alert
  • 3.5mm Audio Jack
  • SMS, MMS & Instant Messaging
  • Email & Push Emai
  • Predictive Text Messaging
  • Java™™ Games & Downloadable Games
  • Personal organiser with Phonebook, Contact Widget, calendar, Clock, Alarm Clock, Converter & Calculator
  • Built-in hands free speakerphone
  • Voice Commands & voice Dialling
  • Conference Call, Call Timer, Call log, Call waiting, Call Hold, Call Divert & Automatic Redial
  • Ovi Maps 3.0 Application, GPS Navigation with A GPS & Digital Compass
  • OS Symbian™™ version 9.3 with S60 5th Edition software
  • QWERTY Keyboard with Multitouch input method
  • Proximity sensor for auto turn off & Accelerometer Sensor for UI Auto Rotate
  • Touch sesitive controls & Scratch Resitant Surface
  • TV Out via Composite & HDMI
  • Flash Lite version 4
  • Document Viewer for Word, Excel, PDF & Powerpoint
  • MicroSD™™ momory Card Support for up to 32 Gigabytes
  • EDGE & GPRS Technology
  • Bluetooth® with A2DP, WLAN WiFi, 3G HSDPA, 3G HSUPA, on-the-go support USB & Micro USB Connectivity
  • Quad band 1900 GSM, 1800 GSM, 900 GSM, 850 GSM & HSDPA 850, 900, 1700, 1900, 2100 Networks
  • WAP 2.0, HTML & XHTML Web Browsers with RSS Feeds
  • GSM Talk Time TBA hrs
  • 3G Talk Time TBA hrs
  • GSM Standby Time TBA hrs
  • 3G Standby Time TBA hrs
  • Size TBA mm
  • Weight TBA g


The Nokia N9 has a very stylish metallic design with a horizontal slider form factor. It has a superb keyboard with widely spaced out keys and a huge 4.0 inch TFT capacitive touchscreen display with a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels. The phone is a work of art and the build quality seems to be really good.

Nokia N9 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Hardware and OS

The Nokia N9 will run the new MeeGo OS. It might be the first phone to run MeeGo. It is quite capable when it comes to hardware, and sports some of the best hardware components. It is powered by a 1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and comes with 512 MB RAM. It has 64 GB internal storage and supports microSD cards up to 32 GB.

Nokia N9 – network and connectivity

Good network and connectivity support is essential for any mobile phone handset. If a phone is rich with top class features and cannot establish communication properly, then all the other features seem to appear pale. Particularly in the case of the smart phones, efficient network and connectivity support is a must. According to the leaked information, N9 by Nokia is a dual SIM handset. This implies the users can enjoy the network services of two operators in a single phone.

The handset provides support to both 2G and 3G networks. The users of the 2G network will be supported by quad band GSM 850/ 900/ 1800/ 1900. The users of the 3G network will get the support of HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 2100 /1900. With the probable inclusion of Wi-Fi® 802.11 b/g/n, UPnP technology and HSDPA, the users can enjoy high speed browsing experience. The browser support of the mobile phone includes WAP 2.0/xHTML, HTML, and RSS feeds. Data transferring facilities can be conducted by using the microUSB v2.0 and Bluetooth® v3.0 with A2DP. The users will also get USB On-the-go support. It is certain that Nokia has included some excellent features to support the network and connectivity requirements of the users.

Nokia N9 Review – the camera

This Symbian™ powered smart phone has several rich functions and applications, but the camera feature is one of the biggest highlights. The N-Series mobile phones by Nokia have always been good on the camera features and this time the expectation from the users is sky high. According to the leaked reports, the camera of the Nokia N9 is going to be a top class 8 mega pixels. If the high mega pixel factor seems to be good news, then there is more. The camera of the handset will load some tremendous features such as Carl Zeiss optics, face and smile detection, dual LED flash, auto focus, and a mind blowing resolution of 3264 x 2448 pixels. The camera is also capable of shooting videos at 720p @ 25fps. Other video photography features include LED video light for taking clear video shots even in low light conditions. The N9 also includes a secondary VGA camera for video calling.

Nokia N9 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia N9 – the display

If you thought that the 8 mega pixel camera factor was the best thing that N9 has to offer, then take a look at the probable features of the handset’s display. The display features leaked out on the Internet are awesome. The huge 4.0 inches touch screen display is Super AMOLED Capacitive, which itself speaks volumes about the quality. It features a resolution of 360 x 640 pixels and 16 million colours. Some of the major highlights of the display includes touch sensitive controls, scratch resistant surface, multi-touch input method, accelerometer sensor for UI auto rotate, proximity sensor for auto turn off, and QWERTY keyboard. The slide-out QWERTY keyboard has four rows and it seems to be comfortable for providing a smooth and fast typing experience.

Nokia N9 Review – the memory

Every mobile phone must be backed with appropriate memory support, especially in the smartphones. The Nokia N9 is loaded with a wide range of features and applications such as Flash Lite v4.0, video and photo editor, document viewer (for viewing PowerPoint, PDF, Excel and Word files), Digital Compass, music files, video files, image files, and lot more. To accommodate all these features and maintaining their smooth running, good storage capacity is very essential. Therefore the N9 comes with an option of expandable memory up to 32 GB by using the microSD™ card slot. The users can use memory card according to their preferred capacity.

Nokia N9 – music and videos

The users of the Nokia N9 will get to enjoy good quality music with MP3/ WMA/ WAV/ eAAC+ player. There is also a DivX/ XviD/ MP4/ H.264/ H.263/ WMV player for playing diverse video files. They can enjoy watching videos by connecting the handset with home theater system by using TV-out (720p video) via HDMI and composite. Dolby Digital Plus via HDMI is also provided ensuring excellent quality of entertainment.

If Nokia announces the N9 it will be great as it will serve a welcome break against the series of serious phones like nokia-e73 that the manufacturer is releasing.

Nokia N9 Conclusion

Nokia has always been building the most usable and affordable phones through out its entire history. They have successfully launched dozens of phones, which helped shaped the industry into more matured playground. Nokia N9 is certainly going to be one of those top notch ones, which deserve all kind of appreciation, however, N9 is not the only high end smartphone releasing this year, 2011 is full of anticipation and surprises as there are a lot of powerful gadgets being announced at MWC 2011.

Since the phone has not yet hit the market, we cannot put a figure on price, however check Mobile Prices in Pakistan for the right price when ever N9 is released. Feel free to contribute your experience with Nokia mobiles and let us know of what you think of this meego mobile phone and whether it shall help shape the new trends in the competitive mobile market?

Nokia N9 Price

Nokia N9 is expected to launch in mid 2011.Price of Nokia N9 in India will be Rs 30,000

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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test. Though Symbian enjoys great popularity in other parts of the world, it's not well known in the States and is falling behind the competition in usability and functionality. The smartphone to ship running the revamped OS. It certainly brings some much-needed improvements, such as a simplified touch interface and enhanced multimedia capabilities.

The N8 is also one of the best camera phones we've seen to date, and delivers good call quality and battery life. That said, it still falls short on a number of fronts, including ease of use, navigation, and integrated services. This, coupled with an expensive price tag of $549 unlocked, isn't going to attract the masses. Symbian fans will find much to like in the Nokia N8, but consumers will be better off going with an Android device or the iPhone.

The good: The Nokia N8 and Symbian 3 offer a better and more enhanced user experience than previous devices. The N8 delivers excellent camera and video quality. The smartphone has solid hardware and offers 3G support for both T-Mobile and AT&T. You get free turn-by-turn navigation via Ovi Maps.

The bad: It's expensive. User interface is much improved, but still trails the competition in ease of use. The N8 can be sluggish. You only get a QWERTY keyboard in landscape mode, and there's no user-replaceable battery.

The bottom line: The Nokia N8 excels as a camera phone, and the improvements of Symbian 3 make it one of the company's best smartphones to date. However, it still has its shortcomings and an expensive price tag, making it a hard sell for the North American market.

Nokia N8 Features Include

  • 3.5″ Multi-Touch and Gestures supported HD AMOLED Screen
  • Symbian 3 OS
  • 12 MP Camera with Xenon flash
  • HD Ready (720p) Vido Recording at 30 FPS
  • HDMI Output, Video on Demand Through OVI Store
  • 3G HSDPA
  • GPS with AGPS support
  • Anodized aluminium casing, available in Color
    • Silver white
    • Dark grey
    • Orange
    • Blue
    • Green

Nokia N8 Specifications :

  • OS: Symbian^3
  • Form Factor: Touch screen monoblock
  • Dimensions: 113.5 x 59.12 x 12.9 mm (L x W x H)
  • Weight: 135g
  • Display and user interface
  • Screen size: 3.5-inch
  • Resolution: 16:9 nHD (640 x 360 pixels) AMOLED
  • 16.7 million colours
  • Capacitive touch screen
  • Orientation sensor (Accelerometer)
  • Compass (Magnetometer)
  • Proximity sensor
  • Ambient light detector


For the most part, Nokia has always produced some great hardware and the Nokia N8 is no exception. As soon as you pick it up, you'll notice the high-quality construction with its metal finishes and glass display. At 4.47 inches tall by 2.32 inches wide by 0.51 inch thick and 2.91 ounces, the smartphone is a nice size: big enough to have a sizable screen but thin and compact enough to make it easy to carry and hold. The camera housing on the back sticks out just slightly, taking a bit away from the streamlined design, but it's not a big deal.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The Nokia N8 has a very solid construction.

Gracing the front of the phone is a 3.5-inch, AMOLED capacitive touch screen. With a 640x360-pixel resolution and support for 16.7 million colors, the display is bright and clear, and we were able to see the contents of the screen outdoors. That said, it's not as sharp as some of the latest smartphones. Compared with devices like the HTC Evo 4G and the Samsung Galaxy S series, text and images don't appear as smooth and the pixels are more visible. It doesn't hamper the phone's use, but you definitely notice the difference.

The display offers a built-in accelerometer and pinch-to-zoom support. The responsiveness of both features is a bit inconsistent. At times, it can be quick or instantaneous, and at other times, there can be a slight delay. This is also true of the touch screen in general. For the most part, it registered our touches but there were occasions where it simply didn't respond or it was so slow to respond that we thought there was a problem. Also, scrolling through lists and home screen panels isn't quite as smooth or zippy as it is some competing phones.

For text entry, you get an onscreen keyboards in portrait and landscape modes, but you only get a QWERTY option in landscape view. This means that if you want to type any messages in portrait view, you'll have to peck away on an alphanumeric keypad.

Aside from the touch screen, there are a couple of controls to help you navigate and perform other functions on the phone. Below the display, there is a lone key that brings you to the main menu or the home screen if you're in another application. On the right side, there's a volume rocker, a lock switch, and a camera activation/capture button.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The right side of the phone features a volume rocker, a lock switch, and camera button.

Other features of the Nokia N8 include a power button, an HDMI port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack on top of the device. The left spine houses the SIM card and microSD expansion slots and the Micro-USB port. On back, you will find the 12-megapixel camera and Xenon flash. Curiously, unlike other Nokia phones, the N8 doesn't have a user-replaceable battery. Though we found battery life to be pretty good, this is still disappointing.

The Nokia N8 comes packaged with a good number of accessories, including a travel charger, a USB cable, an HDMI cable, a USB on-the-go adapter, a wired stereo headset, and reference material. Though the included charger features an international adapter, the phone can be powered by a charger with a Micro-USB connector. The N8 is also available in five colors: dark gray, blue, green, orange, and silver white.


The Nokia N8 feels great in your hand. It’s mostly made from anodized aluminum which comes in vibrant colors. The chrome accents around the camera lens, camera button, and volume controls get the thumbs up too. There are no wiggly parts and the buttons all feel solid. As expected, the hardware design is top-notch. The build quality is excellent, too. The screen is made of gorilla glass which is damage and scratch resistant. I tried scratching the display with my keys using a lot of force and did not notice any effect.

The Nokia N8 isn’t the thinnest phone in the world, but it sits comfortably in the pocket. It measures 113.5 x 59 x 12.9 mm and weighs 135g. Here’s a quick comparison with a few other devices.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test
Nokia N8 vs Samsung Galaxy S vs Nexus One

I have 2 complaints with the hardware. I wish the menu button was placed in the middle instead of the left corner. It requires more effort than it should to reach that button single-handedly. Another problem I had is the microUSB port stopped working after a couple of weeks. I haven’t found anyone else online with this problem, so I don’t think it’s a widespread problem


Inside the Nokia N8 is an ARM 11 microprocessor clocked at 680 MHz with 256MB RAM. All the latest Symbian^3 devices such as the C7, E7, and C6-01 have the same CPU and RAM. This is an increase from previous Nokia devices, but not as high as the numbers featured in the latest devices from other manufacturers such as HTC, Samsung, or Motorola. Some would argue that Symbian has better memory and CPU management compared to other smartphone OS out there and I have to agree. I haven’t seen any memory full messages, but I wouldn’t exactly say the Nokia N8 as a speedy device. It zips through menus, photos, and apps, but the app that’s not very fast is an important one: the web browser. Large websites like Engadget take so much longer to load on the Nokia N8 than the iPhone or Android devices I’ve played with such as the T-mobile G2 and Nexus One.


The Nokia N8 features an HDMI connection so you can easily show off your images, videos and music on compatible televisions and projectors. The USB-on-the-Go adapter is cool as well. You can connect your USB flash drives and access those files directly from the Nokia N8. I’m not clear on what works and what doesn’t, but my 1TB external drive and compactflash reader are unreadable by the Nokia N8. USB thumb drives work fine.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test
HDMI out


The Nokia N8 has a 3.5 inch display with 640×360 resolution. That’s a pixel density of 209.8 according to this PPI calculator. Let’s compare it to other devices using the same calculator:

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

These numbers tell us that the Nokia N8′s display isn’t as sharp as the competition. The more pixels you have in an inch, the more information they can represent, and so the clearer and sharper the picture. The difference in sharpness between the Nokia N8 and the iPhone 4 is huge. You really have to see it in person to understand. The difference between the other devices aren’t that noticeable. On a positive note, the AMOLED display on the Nokia N8 performs really well outdoors even in bright sunlight. It also consumes less power and shows more vibrant colors than the LCD displays used in previous Nokia devices.


Call quality is loud and clear on all the calls I’ve placed and received. Listening to music, the speakers are reasonably loud and have nothing to complain about. The location of the loudspeaker is at the back of the phone. That seems to be the favorite spot for new devices even from other manufacturers.


The Nokia N8 is a photographer’s dream phone. The images it produces are awesome and it’s really quick to share what you capture. The cameras on Nokia Nseries devices have always been ahead of the competition, but the Nokia N8 really shines. Nokia combined the largest sensor ever put into a mobile for incredible detail with Carl Zeiss optics and a hands-off attitude with imaging software to produce really natural photos.

Take a look at these two sample photos I uploaded seconds after capturing them.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Now look at the 100% crops (you can see these for yourself by clicking on the Flickr photos above, then view original size). “Holy Sh#t!” was exactly what I said after seeing the close-up shots.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Since we’re talking about zoom and crops, I’ll mention that the digital zoom on the Nokia N8 is actually usable. I usually stay away from digital zoom, but I was surprised with the results. Here’s a photo of Sprint CEO Dan Hesse with zoom on the Nokia N8 set to the max. (Click on the photo to view larger size).

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Another great addition to the Nokia N8′s camera is the Nokia Panorama app available from the Ovi Store. I was in San Francisco when this app came out. I downloaded it in the morning, tried it on the Golden Gate Bridge, shared it online within seconds, and found out later that night it got Explored front pageon Flickr! As of publishing this review, the photo has been viewed over 6,700 times.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

If you’re not convinced by now, the Nokia N8 also has Xenon flash for those photos at night or low light situations. Cameraphone fans who held on to theNokia N82 because of the xenon flash finally have something to update to. Goodbye blurry night photos! Here’s a sample portrait with the xenon flash firing on the Nokia N8. Thanks to Jeb Brilliant for showing us how the humongous 5-inch Dell Streak looks next to his head when making calls.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


The Nokia N8 captures HD video at 720p and 25FPS. It uses a system called Active Hyper-focal Distance which means anything from 2 feet to infinity appear in focus. This is great for moving objects and in low light without focus hunting. Digital zoom also works great thanks to the large sensor. For optimal results, don’t pan or move the camera too fast while recording. Here are a couple of samples. They’re viewable on Youtube at 720p.

If you follow me on Twitter, you’ve probably seen these photos and videos already because I like to share what I capture right away. I upload the photos to Twitpic and Flickr, then videos to Facebook and Twitvid directly from the Nokia N8. This is possible thanks to the awesome Pixelpipe app that is free and available at the Ovi Store.


The Nokia N8 runs Symbian^3. It’s the same OS on the new devices announced at Nokia World: the C7, E7, and C6-01. If you’re coming from a Symbian^1 device, this latest version introduces advances such as multiple homescreens, visual multitasking, music cover flow, and multitouch pinch-to-zoom. Menu structures are more streamlined and the UI moves at 60 frames per second. You can see lists scroll quickly and fluidly on the music player, contacts, messaging, conversation, etc. The dedicated Broadcom graphics processor is responsible for this. It’s certainly the best version of Symbian yet, but it’s far from perfect.


Typing on our devices is very important, but it seems Nokia did not spend enough resources on this aspect of Symbian^3. One massive letdown is a missing portrait keyboard. Instead, we’re looking at an on-screen numeric keypad. If you’ve been using Symbian your whole life, it’s probably not a big deal, but if you’ve used an iPhone or Android device, it’s a shocker! You have to turn the Nokia N8 sideways to type with the QWERTY keyboard.

This input takes some time to get used to and I strongly feel that Nokia’s designers could have done better by simply moving some of the buttons around. One thing that bothered me is that the backspace button is all the way at the bottom and the return key is to the left of it. Every keyboard I’ve used always had the return key below the backspace. You might think I’m crazy, but it felt like I had to relearn typing with the Nokia N8′s keyboard layout. It took many days for me to finally get used to it. If you’re willing to wait, word on the net is Swype will be releasing for the Nokia N8 soon with portrait QWERTY.

Here’s a photo of the keyboard layout compared to others.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Here’s a photoshopped layout of how I’d move the buttons around.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Nokia Messaging on the Nokia N8 and Symbian^3 has noticeably improved over previous versions. It’s faster to scroll through emails and faster to open emails. It’s also great to view them in HTML where you can pinch-to-zoom or double-tap like in the web browser. Pro tip: To open emails faster, go to settings – sync content – retrieve – Msgs and attachements.

If you’ve only used Symbian devices, this is the best messaging experience ever. Unfortunately, if you’ve been to the dark side, you’ll notice the email experience on Android or iPhone is a little better. There are two things I like better on the other popular platforms. One example is how they differentiate between old and new emails. The iPhone lets you know by placing a big visible circle next to a new email. The circle disappears after it is read. On Android, new emails are highlighted white with bold fonts. Read emails are highlighted in grey and the font becomes un-bolded. With Symbian^3, the subject and the sender have the same font size and you can only recognize a new email if there’s a really tiny asterisk next to the mail icon. All emails, old or new, have a mail icon that is open or closed. However, the icons are small and have a similar color that you can’t differentiate at a quick glance. Another example that Nokia Messaging is behind the competition is that it is missing threaded emails.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Browsing isn’t that great on the Nokia N8. You’ll do fine if you open small pages, but prepare for headache when opening large websites like Engadget. I also don’t understand why the Nokia N8′s browser can’t render one of my favorite sites, Techmeme, correctly in portrait view. The right sidebar shows up below the left content, and almost half of the screen is whitespace. I’m shaking my head in disappointment right now, but there’s a rumor that a newer and better browser is coming.


The new cover flow feature in the music player is pretty cool, but instead of collecting music albums or downloading music, I prefer to stream songs. The TuneWiki app from the Ovi Store is a must have! It has an internet radio where you can choose from a huge list of online stations. The app also tells you the number of listeners and the bitrate of the music (128 kbps sounds great). Want to sing along? Some songs will display the lyrics if you’re in the mood for personal karaoke. The headset included with the Nokia N8 is pretty good too. I listen to a lot of hip hop and love the bass that comes out of them. The audio controls with the headset works well with TuneWiki too.

Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test Nokia N8 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Ovi Maps

I think the Nokia N8 came with Ovi Maps 3.04 preinstalled. There’s a newer, but beta version 3.06 that is so much better. Search has greatly improved and it visually appealing. There’s also a new public transport map layer for subways, trams, and trains in 80+ cities. Sharing a place’s address or location to friends by SMS or email was also added. Voice navigation works fine and is available to all free of charge. Ovi Maps 3.06 can be downloaded from Beta Labs.

Ovi Store

The Ovi Store currently boasts 2.7 million downloads per day and carrier billing makes it easier for you to buy content. My top 5 app recommendations are:

  • Pixelpipe
  • Gravity
  • Joikuspot
  • Nokia Panorama
  • TuneWiki

Games are starting to look good on the Nokia N8 and Symbian^3. Angry Birds in full version just came out and Gameloft released some cool HD games such as Avatar, GT Racing, and Guitar Rock Tour 2. If you’re not looking to spend any money, you might want to check out the cool free action games by Breakdesign. More content keeps showing up, so keep your eyes open.


The Nokia N8 includes a BL-4D 1200 mAh battery like the Nokia N97 mini, but it’s not easily accessible. You can replace the battery by using torx screwdriver if you really need to. The Nokia N8 can be charged via the microUSB port or the 2mm charging connector at the bottom. Surprisingly the battery life is good. The Nokia N8 typically lasts a little more than a day with my normal usage. Similar usage on a Nexus One kills it by late afternoon.


Is the Nokia N8 for you? The Nokia N8 is a solid and great-looking device that photographers are going to love. If you’re a Symbian veteran, you’ll definitely enjoy the Nokia N8. It runs the best version of Symbian yet, but the OS falls short to Android and iPhone with core apps such as the web browser and messaging. Nokia also needs to work on the onscreen keyboard. Fortunately, there are news of updates coming to Symbian that can resolve these issues hopefully sooner than later. The Nokia N8 is now available for $549 USD before subsidies and taxes.

Nokia N8 price

Latest Nokia N8 price. Click Here  [via eBay]

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test. Think of the Nokia Communicator E90 not as just another "boring" business tool, but as the keyboarded version of the incredibly full-featured and hot Nokia N95. Yes, this is clearly the newest member of the 10 year long Communicator line, but this ain't your grandma's Communicator. While we loved the Nokia 9300, Nokia's last Communicator, it lacked all the bells and whistles of a high end NSeries device: things both fun and practical weren't there.

No camera (we can understand since some companies restrict phone use, but we missed it nonetheless), no WiFi, just OK multimedia features, and by the time it hit the US, an older version of the Symbian OS. In contrast, the E90 has it all: a 3 megapixel camera with autofocus lens and VGA video recording, full GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth 2.0, good multimedia and the latest versions of the Symbian OS (9.2) and Series 60 3rd edition Feature Pack 1.

That's another big change: Nokia Communicators have always run Series 80, now put to rest since Series 60 has become powerful enough to handle the Communicator line's features. From a US perspective, the phone is more practical being quad band EDGE rather than 2 triband versions (no having to do research to make sure you get the one that works on all US bands). The E90 gets HSDPA, but sadly for those of us in the US, it supports only the 2100MHz band used in Europe, so we only have EDGE to work with in the US.

The phone is available in two colors: mocha and red, and it can sync to both Windows and Mac OS X computers. It's available unlocked from importers but not carriers in the US. Our review unit came from the very reputable Dynamism, who includes their own 1 year rescue warranty and unlimited toll free tech support.

The good: The Nokia E90 Communicator is equipped with Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS, and has a solid set of productivity and communication features for the business user. The Symbian smartphone also has a full QWERTY keyboard and 3.2-megapixel camera.

The bad: The Nokia E90 doesn't support U.S. 3G networks, and speakerphone volume is a bit weak. The handset is also heavy and bulky.

The bottom line: The Nokia E90 Communicator has a feature set as large as its size, satisfying the needs of the power business users. That said, we're disappointed by the lack of 3G.

Nokia E90 Communicator features at a glance:

  • Dimensions: 132 x 57 x 20 mm
  • Weight: 210 g
  • Talk time: up to 5 hours
  • Standby time: up to 15 Days
  • Full QWERTY keyboard with inner/outer 16 Million color displays
  • Display: 800 x 352 pixels with 16 million true colors
  • Camera: 3.2 megapixel camera with flash and autofocus QCIF camera for video calling
  • 128 MB built-in memory, support for additional microSD expanion of up to 2Gb

  • Support for push email with filtering, including Nokia Intellisync Wireless Email
  • Integrated GPS for Sat Nav
  • Symbian S60 platform, Nokia Office Tools 1.1 and Flash Lite 2.0 supported
  • WiFi, HSDPA up to 3.6Mbit/s enabled
  • WCDMA 2100 MHz with simultaneous voice and packet data
  • GPRS/EGPRS (Class A, MSC 32) and 3GPP
  • Bluetooth and Infrared connectivity
  • GSM quad-band (850/900/1800/1900), WCDMA 2100


When there's no need for the QWERTY keyboard, we can rely on the numeric keypad and a 2-inch QVGA screen on the top face. That, however, comes at a price. The E90 isn't the smallest or the lightest smart phone, but we feel its size and weight can be justified by those who want a portable computing device. Unlike the Dopod U1000 which is also in the mini computer category, we could still fit the E90 snugly into a pants pocket.

The build quality is also excellent for this Nokia. However, the faceplate at the back of the E90 didn't gel very well at the top where the speakers are, but we're nitpicking and it could be just our review unit. When we're using the directional pad, delete and enter buttons on the QWERTY, we can feel its hollowness.

On the outside, the E90 is like any other candy-bar phone. In fact, most of the functions are accessible from the 2-inch screen save for a front-facing camera for 3G video calls. The beauty of the E90 shows up only when we open the clamshell and let it sit on the table like a mini laptop.

Accompanying a generous 4-inch 800 x 352-pixel LCD are numerous shortcut buttons for commonly used applications and also two customizable My Own keys for user-specific programs. A QCIF camera sits at the top left corner of this screen for video calls.
The QWERTY keyboard is a joy to use although it is still impossible to type with two hands like on a full-size keyboard. Most times we simply used our thumbs or two index fingers to type. Unlike the E61i and the Dopod C730, the QWERTY on the E90 is considerably wider so our digits have to move across a longer horizontal distance. That could be tiring after a while.

That said, the keys provide tactile feedback with a pitch of about 0.5mm (which may be enough for some, but not others). It would have been perfect if there was a more distinct feel between each button. A flaw with the earlier 9300i was that the keyboard didn't light up. Fortunately, this is corrected on the E90 with a dedicated button to adjust the brightness of the screen and also to light up the QWERTY keyboard. The keyboard lights up with a brightness level that's enough for us to know where each key is, yet isn't too glaring to distract us from the screen.

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Horsepower and Performance

Low memory (RAM for running programs) has been a sore point for S60 smartphones since time immemorial. The E90 marks a wonderful step forward: instead of the 20 megs average, it has 80 megs free to run programs! In terms of Symbian applications, this means you can run many applications at once with no need to exit apps when memory gets low. Even RAM-hungry apps like Gallery, the web browser and Maps can all run together happily. This makes the E90 Communicator a serious business tool that can make the most of multi-tasking. We hope this is the beginning of a trend for Nokia, but we fear it might just be a bump for the Communicator line.

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The Communicator runs on a dual core ARM11 family CPU at 332MHz and performance is very good by S60 standards. The E90 has dedicated 3D hardware acceleration which is an interesting inclusion for a business oriented phone. Likely it will be well-suited to run 2nd generation NGage platform games when they arrive. Video playback is quite good, with the phone handling 500kbps MPEG4 files with minimal frame dropping. The Nokia has 256 megs of NAND flash memory, with approximately 128 megs available for your use. Should you need more storage for music, videos or anything else, there's a hot swappable microSD card slot on the phone's left edge under a door. It supports the SDHC standard for cards over 2 gigs capacity.

Phone Features, Reception and Data

This is the first Communicator with 3G, and HSDPA at that. Sadly for us Americans, that high speed data connection is available only on the 2100Mhz band, which isn't used in the US. That means we have to resort to 2.5G EDGE, which averages 165k on the E90 according to DSL Reports mobile speed test. You can turn off 3G in phone settings to save power as a consolation. Thankfully, there's WiFi for much faster data when near a hotspot or home/work access point. The E90 is a quad band GSM world phone that supports all GSM bands: 850/900/1800/1900MHz and it's sold unlocked for use with any GSM carrier by Dynamism and other importers. The SIM card is located under the battery. Though import versions of the E90 aren't targeted to the US, the Nokia Settings Wizard had no trouble setting up AT&T and T-Mobile settings for data and MMS for us. Call quality was the usual excellent Nokia stuff, and reception is strong (stronger than the Nokia 9300) on both the 850 and 1900MHz bands as measured using PhoneNetInfo and other decibel-reading utilities. The E90 comes with the usual speed dial where you can assign 2 through 9 to numbers in your contacts (1 is reserved for voicemail). Also there is Nokia's voice dialing which we've never found very trustworthy (woe when it dials an overseas contact instead of the intended next door neighbor). Voice dialing gives you only 1.5 seconds to make sure it "heard" and dialed the correct number.

We've extolled the many virtues of the S60 3rd edition web browser in several other reviews. Suffice to say it and the iPhone have the best browser in the mobile business, hands down. Pages are generally rendered faithfully, including javascript and most dHTML based on javascript, CSS, tables, frames and more. The S60 browser uses Safari technology, and it also handles WAP sites and RSS feeds. In conjunction with the 800 pixel wide screen display, it's a most desktop-like experience. Sorry, there's no QuickTime or Windows Media player but it does support Flash Lite, Real Media and multiple windows along with SSL.

The Messaging application supports POP3 and IMAP email as well as SMS and MMS messages. If you leave the Messaging application running, it will automatically check for new mail and notify you (it retrieves headers only until you tell it to download the full message). It renders HTML emails quite well for POP3 and IMAP accounts. If you want BlackBerry Connect push email, you can download it from Nokia's Business software site here (it's free).


The Communicator runs Symbian OS 9.2 with Nokia S60 3rd Edition Feature Pack 1. As mentioned, this is the first communicator to run S60, and overall the adaptation works well with good use of the added screen real estate. For example, Contacts has its listing on the left with the contact detail on the right. The calendar's default view shows the current month on the left, with appointments for the highlighted day shown on the right. Gallery has a scrollable list of media on the left and shows a preview size image on the right.

The Communicator has both traditional notes that sync to Outlook and Active Notes which supports embedding images, business cards, sound and video clips. To-do items (tasks) are tracked in the calendar and all PIM applicatiions sync to Outlook under Windows and to the Mac OS X address book and iCal (no notes syncing though). PC Suite for Windows is included on the companion CD and you can download Nokia's iSync plugin for the Mac here. PC Suite allows you to transfer multimedia items including photos, music and videos under Windows and for Mac users there's a downloadable beta of Nokia Multimedia Transfer for syncing with iTunes and iPhoto. Calendar and Contacts are full-featured and up to business use with one continuing complaint: there's still no sort by company option in Contacts, truly odd for a business phone.

For MS Office work there's QuickOffice which handles viewing and editing Word, Excel and PowerPoint files. It does a decent job of preserving formatting, and is as capable as the Mobile Office suite on Windows Mobile Professional (Pocket PC). The wide screen display is extremely well-suited to Excel document and PDF viewing. Adobe Reader handles PDFs, even long files with images and there's an un-zipping application as well along with the S60 File Manager. New is Nokia's Team Suite application, where you can creates teams for group messaging, conference calling and more.

Fun and games include Nokia's Gallery application for viewing photos. There's a music player with playlists and EQ, Real Player that handles MP4 (including non-copy protected iTunes format MP4), MPEG4, 3GP, RA, AAC and RV files. In our tests, Real on the E90 had better than average performance for an S60 device, finally rivaling Windows Mobile Pocket PC devices with faster CPUs. There's also an FM radio that uses the wired headset as its antenna (though you can play radio through the speaker) and Flash Lite (not to be confused with the Flash browser plugin on the desktop). Music quality through the included stereo headset is very good, as it is through Bluetooth stereo headphones.


The E90 ships with software similar to the Nokia N95, which also has an internal GPS. The Communicator has a true GPS, though it's not a SiRF III which generally offers the best performance in mobile packages. Nokia Maps is a world-wide solution, and that's ambitious. While it's very cool to search for a restaurant called "Pescador" and see results not only nearby, but also in various states of Mexico along with Argentina and other countries; you know there have to be holes in mapping and navigation somewhere in the world. We hear Maps works fairly well in Europe, but in the US, it's a decidedly mixed bag.

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia includes a GPS application and Maps which provide mapping and navigation worldwide (turn-by-turn navigation and route simulation require a fee). The GPS application shows you current latitude, longitude, elevation, speed and more. The navigation and mapping are powered by Navteq and TeleAtlas and you can download maps to the phone (or microSD card) over-the-air or via WiFi. In addition you can use desktop map loader software to download and transfer maps to the phone. The on-phone software is actuallysmart2go which Nokia purchased, and it includes maps, an extensive POI database (points of interest), route simulation, directions shown both on map and turn-by-turn and more. It has day and night display modes and options to exclude toll roads, tunnels, highways and ferries. The software and basic service are free, but you must pay a monthly fee of approximately $13, or $110 for 3 years (for the US and Canada) if you want route simulation and turn-by-turn directions including spoken directions. Though maps and POIs are free for those areas of the world covered, you would have to buy navigation on a per country basis. So if you are a US resident but travel to France and want turn-by-turn navigation for France, you'll need to purchase that (which makes the 7 day and one month options attractive).

Like the Nokia N95, the E90 is relatively slow to acquire a GPS fix and there's no assisted GPS feature to speed things up (yet). Our E90 takes between 1 and 2 minutes to get a fix, unless it's been used within the last hour, then it takes only 30 seconds to a minute. Unlike recent SiRF III GPS equipped PDAs and smartphones, the E90 isn't likely to get a signal indoors and can occasionally lose track of satellites for 10 to 30 seconds in a moving car with modest cloud coverage overhead.

We really liked the logical and very complete POI listing, but were surprised that some businesses weren't available in the search function (i.e.: Apple Store-- there are 4 in our immediate area and other mapping/navigation solutions list them). Spoken turn-by-turn directions are delivered in a clear male voice and the route simulation is a must if you want to double-check the route before heading out. Here in the Dallas metroplex, an amazingly orderly street grid is the norm, and buildings are relatively short which should make for good results. But we found that the application was slow to re-route when we chose a different route: it took about 2 minutes for it to stop insisting we make various U-turns rather than re-routing. Granted our map data doesn't download as quickly over EDGE as it would over 3G overseas, but nonetheless, good guidance logic would have started re-routing much sooner. Mapping a route from location A to B with the same options (fastest route, no avoidances) often yielded different routes-- odd. Route selection was sometimes downright peculiar, as we also noted on the N95. For a fastest route selection, it consistently wanted us to make our way through the twisty, low speed roads in our development rather than taking the short hop out to a major road.

There aren't many professional mapping and navigation solutions for the E90 with US maps yet. We tried Wayfinder which doesn't have the built-in solutions rich set of features, and it did a better job of routing but had the same slow acquisition times and lost satellites in-route.

Browse the web

The user can take a call over the phones loud speakers which leaves the user handsfree to continue working & enjoy a voice over IP Internet call on their E90. The user can talk on every continent as the E90 comes with quad band technology which covers GSM 850, 900, 1800 & 1900 which will switch between the network bands automatically. The phone comes with a XHTML Web browser which allows the user to access Web site information when the user is away from their office. The Nokia E90 Communicator comes with short cut keys to voice features which allow the user to gain quick access to their voice features. The phone comes with a push to talk feature which works like a walkie talkie style phone communication.


The Nokia E90's 3.2 megapixel camera is impressive, both for still photos and video. Video quality rivals the excellent N95 and like the N95 it can shoot at VGA resolution at 30fps. Still image quality isn't quite as good as the 3MP autofocus Nokia N73 (one of the best), nor can it beat the 5MP N95 or Sony Ericsson's top CyberShot phones such as the 800i, but it's better than most camera phones on the market. The autofocus lens is sometimes a little balky to focus but generally it's not too slow by autofocus camera phone standards, and it manages to create good depth in images.

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

While Nokia used just the right amounts of JPEG sharpening and smoothing in the N73 and too much sharpening in the N95, the E90 overall has just a bit too much sharpening and pleasing smoothing. Color balance is often spot-on, as with the image on the right, but there are times when color shift blue, especially indoors even under incandescent lighting. Overall, contrast is a little too high which can make the photo look slightly dark (see the pool photo below), but we're being picky here. Compared to most camera phones, the photos are fantastic. Unfortunately, indoor shots in poorly lit locations are Nokia's weak point and the E90 is no exception. Even the fairly bright LED flash doesn't help if the subject is more than 4 feet away.

The camera can take still images up to 2048 x 1536 resolution and it has digital zoom. A variety of image settings allow you to tweak photos including color effects, white balance and light sensitivity (handy if you're getting too much white out). The camera and camcorder can save photos and videos directly to a micro SD card and there are self-timer and burst mode (called sequence mode) for images.

The camera can shoot video up to VGA resolution at 30 fps and has features that include image stabilization and recording video with audio. Quality is quite good for both video and audio, as mentioned. The front facing QCIF video conferencing camera is of little use here in the US, since no GSM carrier supports simultaneous 2-way video calling.

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Nokia E90 Communicator : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

WiFi and Bluetooth

As we'd expect of a strong business phone, the Communicator has WiFi 802.11b/g. Range was average by PDA and smartphone standards and connections were reliable. The phone supports open and encrypted networks along with WPA, and has an auto-scan feature that will look for access points within range (you can turn this feature off to avoid endless notifications in urban areas and to save battery power). The Nokia intelligently switches to a saved WiFi access point if available, rather than using GSM/3G data.

The E90 has Bluetooth 2.0 +EDR with pretty much every profile supported. There's handsfree, headset, remote SIM (for car kits), HID (Nokia includes their Bluetooth keyboard driver), serial port, A2DP stereo, DUN and file transfer. We had no problem transferring files to and from our Windows and Mac machines and syncing over Bluetooth to our Mac Pro using Nokia's iSync plugin. We tested the Plantronics Pulsar 590A stereo bluetooth headset and the Plantronics Discovery 655, BlueAnt Z9 and Samsung WEP-200 Bluetooth headsets all of which worked well. Stereo sound through the Pulsar 590A was rich and full by Bluetooth standards, and we managed 25 feet range.

Battery Life

The E90 has surprisingly good battery life for a smartphone with a large display (make that 2 displays), GPS and triple wireless radios. The 1500 mAh Nokia BP-4L easily lasted us 3 days on a charge without serious multimedia use (just watching a few 5 minute short films and listening to MP3s for an hour a day). The WiFi radio uses power judiciously and as such it didn't bring the battery to its knees. We used WiFi about 30 minutes per day and turned off automatic access point discovery (both to save battery life and because we didn't really want to know about the myriad access points always in range wherever we went). Constant GPS use, say for a day on the road, will use up the battery more quickly and we'd suggest a car charger for road warriors. Though the GPS is more power-frugal than on other mobile phones we've tested, in fact impressively so, it won't last 8 hours of continuous use.


A fantastic update to the Communicator line that's more like a re-birth. While keeping the best of the Communicator line's inventive and practical ergonomics, the feature set has been raised to the sky. HSDPA will thrill Europeans and quad band EDGE means the phone will work fine in the US as well as anywhere else in the world GSM service is available. WiFi will keep you connected when near an access point and Nokia's Bluetooth implementation is as usual, excellent. The PIM applications are strong and the Office suite plus Acrobat Reader make for a good mobile office. The web browser is best in its class and the mail application is decent. BlackBerry users will appreciate BlackBerry Connect and the phone's overall stability is excellent. For the first time, we get good multimedia and an excellent camera in a Communicator, which means down times won't be dull.

Pro: Fantastic wide screen display with 800 x 352 resolution that's very viewable outdoors. Very good camera, WiFi, Bluetooth and a GPS. Excellent Communicator design melds a mobile phone with a notebook. The E90 is extremely stable and reliable.

Con: In the US, the GPS and Nokia Maps is a mixed bag. Nokia has improved on the N95's GPS with firmware updates, and we hope they do the same with the E90. Large by phone standards. No US 3G. The mobile office and strong PDA features feel a bit hobbled without a touch screen.

Nokia E90 Communicator Price

Price: est. $900 to $1,200 US

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HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test. New Phone 2011 HTC Thunderbolt Specification Price,cell phone reviews, This unit has an 8-megapixel camera on the back, which supports HD video recording. It also provides a VGA front camera for video calling. The DLNA capabilities Thunderbolt enables to stream and share content directly to compatible home theater components, including HDTVs and stereo receivers. At CES 2011, Verizon and HTC unveiled their first ever 4G LTE-enabled smartphone.

Of course, all new dual-core processor Android smartphones later this year, the HTC Thunderbolt lacking in processing power, but certainly, it is probably one of the fastest 4G phones, you can now buy and the only 4G phone on Verizon. That’s probably the highlight of this 4.3-inch phone, you can do much more with new 4G Verizon’s LTE network.

The HTC Thunderbolt comes with a Qualcomm MSM8655 CPU 1Ghz, 768MB RAM, 8GB internal memory, 32GB SD card pre-installed, Android 2.2, 720P HD video recording, and the HTC Sense UI. Taiwan based smartphone manufacturer HTC, has announced the latest 4G smartphone, HTC Thunderbolt, at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2011 in Las Vegas. The new Thunderbolt will be available through Verizon in the United States. HTC Thunderbolt has a huge 4.3-inch WVGA touchscreen, a maximum multimedia entertainment on 4G LTE provides Verizon’s network. The diaplay screen supports 800×480 pixel resolution. Thunderbolt Froyo 2.2 runs on Android operating system and is powered by 1GHz Snapdragon processor.

HTC Thunderbolt Specification

- General 2G Network CDMA 800 / 1900
- 3G Network CDMA2000 1xEV-DO / LTE 700
- Announced 2011, January
- Status Coming soon. Exp. release 2011, Q1
- Size Dimensions 122 x 66 x 13 mm
- Weight 164 g
- Display Type TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
- Size 480 x 800 pixels, 4.3 inches
- Accelerometer sensor for UI auto-rotate
- Proximity sensor for auto turn-off
- HTC Sense 2.0 UI
- Multi-touch input method
- Sound Alert types Vibration, MP3, WAV ringtones
- Loudspeaker Yes
- 3.5mm jack Yes
- DNSe (Dolby mobile sound enhancement)
- Memory Phonebook Practically unlimited entries and fields, Photocall
- Call records Practically unlimited
- Internal 8GB storage, 768 MB RAM
- Card slot microSD, up to 32GB, 32GB included
- Data GPRS No
- 3G Rev. A, up to 3.1 Mbps, LTE
- WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA
- Bluetooth Yes, v2.1 with A2DP, EDR
- Infrared port No
- USB Yes, microUSB v2.0
- Camera Primary 8 MP, 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus, dual-LED flash
- Features Geo-tagging, face detection
- Video Yes, 720p
- Secondary Yes, 1.3 MP
- Features OS Android OS, v2.2 (Froyo)
- CPU 1GHz Scorpion processor, Adreno 205 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8655 Snapdragon
- Messaging SMS(threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email, IM
- Browser HTML
- Radio Stereo FM radio with RDS
- Games Yes + downloadable
- Colors Black
- GPS Yes, with A-GPS support
- Java No


From a head-on perspective, the HTC Thunderbolt is almost identical to the HTC Inspire 4G. We're assaulted by a sizable 4.3-inch WVGA capacitive touchscreen display and a panel of haptic feedback buttons: Home, Menu, Back, and Search. Just like the Inspire 4G, the HTC Thunderbolt's screen was highly sensitive and offered an impressive graphics spread. However, the HTC Thunderbolt strays from the Inspire by embedding a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera next to the handset speaker. At some point, users will be able to take advantage of video calling via skype, but that wasn't available to us just yet. To compliment the front-facing camera, the HTC Thunderbolt is equipped with an 8-megapixel primary camera on the back with 720p HD video recording capability and a dual LED flash.

Aside from the front-facing camera, the HTC Thunderbolt is a memory machine compared to the Inspire 4G. Out of the box, we get a whopping 32GB MicroSD card and 8GB of internal storage, bringing the total to 40GB from the starting line! The HTC Inspire 4G has 4GB of internal space and an 8GB MicroSD card, offering a net of 12GB out of the box. For the multimedia junkie, the HTC Thunderbolt packs in one of the largest storage capacities in its class. Unfortunately, accessing the MicroSD card on the HTC Thunderbolt means removing the battery—something we didn't have to accomplish on the Inspire 4G, thanks to its separate compartments. Therefore, we found it was best to connect the HTC Thunderbolt to a computer via the included USB cable for drag-and-drop action.

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test Lastly, you'll notice that the HTC Thunderbolt has a kickstand for propping the phone up while watching movies and playing certain games. Not only that, but we truly dig the Thunderbolt's style, flaunting a gunmetal gray and matte black color combination with stainless metal kickstand running across like a belt. The Thunderbolt also offers the standard architectural fanfare, including a 3.5mm audio jack, volume control rocker, open USB terminal, and Power/Lock switch. Portability wise, the HTC Thunderbolt is slightly thicker than the HTC Inspire 4G, but we prefer its looks over its AT&T cousin any day.

Software and Interface

The HTC Thunderbolt is equipped with a 1GHz Snapdragon MSM8655 chipset with the Adreno 205 GPU for improved graphics and video hardware acceleration, which is the same configuration found in the Inspire 4G. More common traits consist of the Thunderbolt's Android 2.2 OS with the latest iteration of HTC Sense. It's worth noting that the HTC Thunderbolt will receive an Android 2.3 upgrade within the near future, an OS tweak that we praised on theNexus S. Let's just say the HTC Thunderbolt was one of the faster smartphones we've tested, enabling us to fly through screens and pages effortlessly.

But the star of the show was HTC Sense. The latest version of the highly acclaimed interface offered more versatility in the appearance department via the Personalize feature. Here we could choose from various Scenes, which acted like profiles that were tailored to a particular user's interests. Social, Work, Play, and Travel were some options offered by HTC, and we could also apply Skins (Themes) that customized the entire look of the phone. In fact, when we tap and hold on one of the Thunderbolt's 7 home screens, the Personalize screen pops up, offering Widgets, Applications, Shortcuts, Folders, and even Sound Settings.

We got Leap, which allowed us to pinch and zoom a home screen to display all home screens minimized at once, and HTC Sense offered its famous Weather widget with live weather updates and animation. We really liked the fact that the dropdown menu displayed our most recently opened applications, and Androids Manage Applications program enabled us to kill programs that were hanging around and chomping memory and battery life. Overall, the HTC Sense experience was seamless and refined—certainly an example of premiere phone software.


Thanks to Android 2.2 with Flash 10.1 support, our browsing experience was enhanced with the ability to view flash content right from within the browser. For instance, we could load one of our reviews and watch the embedded YouTube video right on the page without a hitch. Audio matched up perfectly, and we could even pinch and zoom while watching. The HTC Sense experience fortified our browsing experience with a robust Bookmarks menu and the ability to scroll through open windows. Bookmarks included Favorites and History, controlled via a virtual sliding switch with flawless graphics.

Search allowed us to not only search our phone for anything, but the Internet as well, so it was more of a universal experience. We will say that our HTC Thunderbolt review unit froze while we were jumping between windows, and the phone needed a restart in order to get back on track. We're hoping that the Thunderbolt used its "Get Out of Jail Free" card with that unfortunate behavior, but based on the random glitches we found on the HTC Inspire 4G, it looks as though it might be more of a normal occurrence.

4G and Web Surfing

This is the reason you want this phone. The Thunderbolt is the first handset to tap into Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network, offering blazing speeds in 38 cities and counting. The Thunderbolt made quick work of popular websites, downloading the mobile versions of ESPN,, and Yahoo in 3 to 5 seconds each. The full NYTimes site loaded in just 13 seconds, but it took an additional 23 seconds with Flash enabled. A high-quality HD trailer of the movie Limitless started playing in 3 seconds and never stuttered; when we tried streaming the same clip at low quality over 3G on the Verizon iPhone 4G, it took 9 seconds to start playing and skipped multiple times.

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | TestHow much faster is the Thunderbolt than other 4G phones? In New York City, download rates ranged from a low of 3.9 Mbps all the way up to 17 Mbps. The average was 8.3 Mbps, which is nearly 4 times the average speed turned in by T-Mobile's fastest 4G phone, the Galaxy S 4G (2.4 Mbps). Sprint's fastest 4G phone, the EVO Shift 4G, maxed out at 9.4 Mbps, but generally offers speeds in the 3 to 4 Mbps range. So the Thunderbolt is about 3.5 times faster than anything on T-Mobile's network and at least twice as fast as Sprint's 4G phones.

The Thunderbolt's upload speeds were literally off the charts in the app, so we don't trust those numbers. However, in hotspot mode the device delivered rates in the 4 to 7 Mbps range. That beats the pants off of Sprint's phones (typically about 1 Mbps up) and T-Mobile's (1.7 max). That means you'll be able to share photos and videos much faster on the Thunderbolt than you can on other networks.

We're also happy to report that hand-offs from 4G to 3G (and back again) didn't take very long. When emerging from the Lincoln Tunnel into New York City, the Thunderbolt switched from 3G to 4G in less than a minute.

Mobile Hotspot

One of the best things about the Thunderbolt is that its lightning-fast speeds aren't limited to the phone itself. You can share that 4G connection with up to eight devices, and through May 15th you get unlimited data for no extra charge. After that, you'll pay $20 per month for 2GB, which isn't a lot of data when you have this kind of performance.

When we connected a laptop to the Thunderbolt via the Mobile Hotspot app, we consistently saw download rates in the 14 Mbps range and uploads from 4 to 7 Mbps (as mentioned above). Complex sites such as,, and loaded in just 5 to 7 seconds. We even loaded Yahoo in 4 seconds--while streaming Hulu in another tab in Firefox. By the way, the video started playing almost instantly.

The Thunderbolt delivered even faster results when we connected via USB, reaching a high of 19.3 Mbps on the downlink. Going this route isn't a bad idea, since hotspot mode chews up a lot of power.

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Multimedia and Productivity

The Android Market was readily available to handle all of our gaming and application needs, belonging to a giant library of titles that seems to be increasing the quality of its content. 3D gaming was a snap for the HTC Thunderbolt, and the phone offered DLNA for wirelessly streaming to digital home devices. With 40GB of storage, the HTC Thunderbolt rocked for compiling giant movie libraries and storing ample music titles. Social networking was taken care of by the FriendStream widget, which acted as a live stream of status updates, and we could keep a Rolodex of our favorite contacts thanks to the Favorites widget.

In addition to Google, Verizon Wireless' new 4G LTE smartphone gave us Flickr, Skype, Facebook, AIM, and other IM programs that could only be used as part of a My Verizon profile. Skype will offer video calling down the line, but we'll have to wait for it, and that's going to be one of the highlight features on the Thunderbolt. Lastly, the HTC Thunderbolt had QuickOffice for modifying Microsoft Office documents, and Exchange Email support. The bottom line is that the HTC Thunderbolt is one equipped phone.

Apps, Music, and Video

While the Android Market certainly offers plenty of compelling options (more than 200,000 apps and counting), Verizon and HTC bundle a few fun and useful apps to get you started. On the video front there's the Blockbuster app for downloading movies but also Bitbop for downloading TV shows (and some flicks). We pulled down an episode of theColbert Report in six minutes over Wi-Fi. The selection is sparse, but the video quality is top-notch. You'll pay $9.99 per month after the seven-day free trial.

Verizon also throws in Rock Band and Let's Golf 2. We found the latter more compelling, even if the load times were sluggish. We could make out fine details such as the grid pattern in the freshly cut fairway. Other highlights include a Kindle app for reading eBooks, QuickOffice, and TuneWiki (which displays lyrics for your music collection).

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Call Quality/Battery Life

We had no major complaints with the call quality on our HTC Thunderbolt review unit, and actually preferred it over the HTC Inspire 4G on AT&T. That said, both phones exhibited a very similar battery performance, though the HTC Thunderbolt has a more superior 1400 mAh pack compared to the Inspire 4G's 1230 mAh juice box. Regardless, the HTC Thunderbolt will definitely need a daily charge, just like any high-end smartphone, and in some cases an additional charge throughout the day will be necessary.

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


One arena that the HTC Inspire 4G has the HTC Thunderbolt beat is the camera department. The phone has an 8-megapixel camera with dual LED flash and 720p HD video recording. When we looked at the diminutive size of the Thunderbolt's lens compared to the Inspire 4G, it was obvious that low light for the Thunderbolt would be taking a major hit. And it did. We tested the Thunderbolt against the Inspire 4G and HTC's new Arrive, and both phones offered twice the amount of exposure when the lights went out. Bright light shooting was great, however, and above many other phones in its class. However, you'll find that the flash will be needed very frequently on the HTC Thunderbolt.

HTC Thunderbolt : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

We experienced the same phenomenon in video mode—bright light looked dandy while low light was exceedingly temperamental. Fortunately, the video light and touch focus could be employed while recording video, and that is a prime feature to have on a phone these days. However, the HTC Thunderbolt does not handle motion that well, especially in minimal/low lighting conditions. It's still a phone camera, while we look at the iPhone 4, which rivals certain point-and-shoot cameras. The HTC Thunderbolt does have a great shooting interface with Effects and control over Exposure, Sharpness, ISO, and more. The camera on the HTC Thunderbolt is good, but the Inspire 4G holds the edge, thanks to its superior low light sensitivity.

HTC Thunderbolt – infoSync Diagnosis

Verizon's first 4G LTE phone is not too shabby at all. The HTC Thunderbolt joins one of the strongest data networks in the country and gives users 40GB of storage space out of the box. It has a front-facing camera, Android 2.2, HTC's beautiful Sense interface, and a kickstand to hang with the rest of the premiere multimedia smartphones. Yes, the HTC Thunderbolt is indeed a striking start for Verizon's LTE network, and will certainly be a hot seller this year.

We could have used some extra battery life and a camera with better low light sensitivity, but our main concern centered around the Thunderbolt's tendency to freeze randomly like a deer in the headlights. After spending over a month with the HTC Inspire 4G, we have seen the phone freeze or glitch up intermittently, but it's usually due to an unstable application. The fact that the Thunderbolt called it quits while we were browsing the Internet led us to proceed with caution when we were prepared to go balls to the wall with this phone.

Regardless, the HTC Thunderbolt is one of the best smartphones on the market, and will definitely fit the needs of those who live within LTE territory. With download speeds of 5 - 12 Mbps and upload speeds of 2 – 5 Mbps, the HTC Thunderbolt is the first of the soldiers on its way to 100/50 Mbps speeds Verizon Wireless hopes to one day offer. But for now, the HTC Thunderbolt has struck, and the competition will be scrambling to clean up the debris.


The Thunderbolt lives up to its name by being the fastest 4G phone on any network--by far. Provided you're in an area with LTE coverage, you'll be able to load sites, download apps, and start streaming videos in the blink of any eye. This smart phone can also easily replace a USB modem or MiFi. Unfortunately, the Thunderbolt runs out of gas too fast. Overall, we prefer the slimmer and lighter iPhone 4, which has a better display, higher-quality apps, and longer battery life. As for Android fans, they may want to wait for the dual-core Motorola Droid Bionic to come to Verizon (complete with beefier 1930mAH battery). Still, if you have a need for serious speed right now, the Thunderbolt will satisfy.

Price and Release Date

The HTC Thunderbolt is available now from Verizon Wireless. It costs $250 with a new two-year contract.

Continue Reading

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


image Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test. We've now got our hands on a Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 complete with the Android 2.1 update - lets see if it's any better or whether it's pushed SE further behind the Android pack. Sony Ericsson announced Xperia X10 smartphone. Xperia X10 is first Android phone with 8MP camera. Checkout the expected price of Xperia X10 specifications, Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 Android smartphone. Announced 2009, November. Features 3G, TFT capacitive touchscreen, 8 MP camera, Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth.

After a disappointing 2009 for Sony Ericsson, with the likes of the Satio failing to live up to its flagship billing, the Swedish-Japanese alliance is back with its first Android proposition - the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10. It's got all the makings of a true classic - a whopping 4-inch screen, a 1GHz Snapdragon processor and it's rocking Android with a cool overlay.

In short, since we first heard about it at the tail end of 2009, we've been excited to see if it can be the handset to return Sony Ericsson to the sharp end of the mobile phone game.

It's odd, but given the massive screen on the phone, the first thing you notice when looking at the Xperia X10 is not the screen - on our black review model the main thing is simply how shiny it is.

It's an understated phone, with a sharp, angular design and minimal buttons - in short, it looks like the kind of high-end handset we'd expect from one of the leading mobile manufacturers.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The screen dominates most of the front of the Xperia X10, and there are three buttons at the bottom, denoted as menu, home and back. (Albeit with some indecipherable symbols - what's wrong with actually writing 'Menu' and 'Home' on there?)

Between each of the front buttons there's a little LED, which glows brightly whenever the phone is used - a nice touch that adds a premium feel, although they can get a little annoying, especially in the dark - and it seems there's no way to turn them off.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The rest of the phone is pretty sparse - compared to the likes of the Sony Ericsson Satio and Vivaz, it's a little odd to only see a single camera shutter button on the right-hand side of the phone, with the volume up/down key above it at the other end.

On the top of the phone, there's the 3.5mm headphone jack, flush to the chassis, and the on/off button, which doubles as the lock key too.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

It's a little far away from where you usually rest your hand, so you'll generally find yourself using your other hand to activate it - which is a little irritating.

The microUSB slot is located at the top as well under a dust cap - this is a little awkward to get off at times, and has a frustratingly short leash to keep it in place - meaning you have to really wedge it out of the way to connect up the charger.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

There's nothing at all on the left-hand side of the Xperia X10, nor on the bottom, save a little grille to attach a lanyard if you're one of those that sees a big mobile as an ideal replacement for a necklace.

The back of the phone is slightly curved - we assume this is another corollary of the ergonomics study conducted by Sony Ericsson which led to the 'human curvature' of the Sony Ericsson Vivaz.

It does make it slightly nicer to hold in the hand admittedly - but it adds a lot of thickness to the device, which is 13mm.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

When you consider the HTC HD2, which has a much larger 4.3-inch screen, is a couple of millimetres thinner at 11mm, it does make something of a difference with a device this size.

Overall though, it's not the worst looking phone in the world by a long way - it certainly doesn't overpower your hand when you're holding it, and the screen looks lovely and bright in use, without being dominated by the chassis.

In the box

Sony Ericsson usually chucks in everything it can find into the boxes of its phones, but with the Xperia X10 things are a little more minimalist.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Like HTC and Apple, the box for the X10 is coffin-like, with only basic cables inside.

The environmentally friendly idea of offering a microUSB cable with plug adaptor saves on needing an extra charger, but does get irritating when you keep having to go off and find the lead when transferring content.

Of course, it's probably easier to just perform the latter task by just connecting a memory card and transferring content that way - especially when you get an 8GB card in the box and Android is set up to connect up to your PC and easily copy content across.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Interface

If you've ever heard anything about the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 before, you'll know that it is not only rocking Android but its headline-grabbing feature is the new Timescape overlay.

The home screen uses the generic Android display (albeit with a slightly tweaked UI, with everything given a kind of futuristic 'sheen' by Sony Ericsson) and Sony Ericsson appears to have removed the option of having Splines as your home screen alternative, which we can't say we're sad about.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

If all that sounds like complete gobbledygook, then don't fret – it's just the ridiculous language used by Sony Ericsson to describe a very simple system.

Timescape is basically a stack of tiles, with each one representing a different method of communication or action. Twitter and Facebook updates, text messages, songs listened to, photos taken – all of these get their own tile in the stack (which Sony Ericsson calls 'Splines'... we know).

Now the only way to get to this is by the main tile widget on the home screen, which also displays the most recent messaging update you've received from Twitter, Facebook or text, as well as photos you've recently taken too (although you can alter the filters in the settings menu).

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The main view is all of these things together in one long scrollable line – you can set the likes of Twitter and Facebook to update as often as every 15 minutes, but this will obviously drain the battery life faster.

Swipe left and right and you get each activity in its own separate Spline, making it easier to get to things like music or emails.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

It's easy enough to just swipe left and right, but if you want to go to a specific Spline, then it's much harder to scroll along the bottom, where all the icons are held.

If you have the default Android UI as your main home screen, then things should be pretty straightforward – swipe up from the bottom of the screen for the menu, swipe down from the top and you'll get access to all your notifications.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

You now get five home screens to swipe left and right onto – here you can drag and drop icons from the menu, or long-press the screen and get access to the widget list, such as power management or clocks.

There's not the greatest range of options in there to be honest – we'd have hoped for more from Sony Ericsson on its first Android phone.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The menu screen at the bottom has been overhauled to bring it up to date with the Android 2.1 upgrade - it's no longer a pull up menu, but a button to press directly. Much easier to interact with, although there can be a terrible slow down on the menu animation actually kicking in - worse, in our eyes, than the original X10 version.

We're also not entirely convinced by Timescape as anything more than a gimmick – while yes, it is handy to see all your friends in a big long row, each tile uses the profile picture from Twitter or Facebook to identify the user.

This results in a very grainy and blurry picture – making us wonder why on earth you'd use this system in the first place, as it makes the Xperia X10 look pretty lo-fi.

We're shocked Sony Ericsson hasn't updated this feature

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Also, when clicking on a tile to have a look at a Tweet, if you're presented with a link in there that you'd like to have a look at (something very important in Twitter) then you have to click the tile, wait for mobile Twitter to load via the browser (which takes a while) then click on the link from there.

This is far too convoluted for a phone that's supposed to make things simple – the point of Android is supposed to be 'zero clicks' to get information, and with the likes of the HTC Desire and Samsung Galaxy S, there's a lot more understanding about how these social networks should be integrated with the phone.

Another change with Android 2.1 is the lock screen - it's no longer an arc, but a simple iPhone-like swipe instead. It suffers badly when the phone is woken from sleep mode though - the juddering can be terrible and you'll often miss the swipe.

But on a more positive note, the large capacitive screen is bright and responsive for the most part, working quickly when registering a finger input and allowing you to scroll through things like Timescape with ease.

What's more curious is that despite packing a 1GHz processor, the Xperia X10 doesn't seem to always be able to use that raw power.

For instance, the menu issue – it takes ages to load it up and then when scrolling through it there's jumping and lagging and all sorts of ugly things that we hoped we'd never see again on a phone with this kind of power.

It's very much a minor issue, we must stress – most of the time the Xperia X10 whips through all functions as we'd expect it to, it's just the times it drops the ball that niggles us.

What is more annoying is the update hasn't cured the inbuilt lag when waking from standby though, which we presume is caused by background updating; after about an hour, the phone will begin to slow down and only shutting down programs and background syncing will cure it.

However, as Android 2.1 doesn't come with an in-built task manager we'd still advise you get one until Android 2.2 comes along (where constantly shutting things down can actually be a negative for this version).

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Another massive point: the X10 is STILL running a pretty outdated version of the OS considering the HTC Desire, Legend and Samsung Galaxy S, which all started on older versions of Android and yet are already rocking the latest 2.2 version.

Android 2.2 offers new battery improvements, which the X10 sorely needs, and not only that: we'll be seeing Android 2.3 any day now, so once again the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is going to be two steps behind the competition.

However, let's look at the positives: X10 owners now get live wallpapers!These look great and open up a whole world of new interactivity on the home screen, which we really like.]

We're very much unsold on the implementation of the upgrade to 2.1 - it's an improvement, but the goalposts have already shifted massively.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Calling and contacts

With a handset this size, you can argue that it's more internet tablet than mobile phone – but we're always going to expect a mobile to make calls and send texts, otherwise our world could literally implode under the weight of change.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The Android OS has always been kind to contact management and calling, so the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 should continue in that vein.


Sony Ericsson has overhauled the contact menu somewhat with the Xperia X10 – it's all blue background and swishy animations when moving through functions, which is nice and at least gives the phone a unique flavour.

You can also whoosh through your list of friends with no problem at all thanks to the 1GHz processor underneath – either scroll through normally or use the alphabet list at the side of the screen to get to the right buddy.

However, this also suffers a little from the slowdown we previously mentioned, and it's not as slick as something like the HTC Desire at negotiating through your phonebook.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Once in the contact profile, things get a little bit trickier, in another example of Sony Ericsson not quite getting the need to make everything as simple as possible for the user.

For instance, given there's no physical call or terminate key on the phone, it's actually very hard to give someone a ring through their contact.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

While there's a big button to begin a message conversation with them, you have to tap very accurately on their thin number to call your friend – would it have killed Sony Ericsson to make this bigger and much more finger friendly?

Android 2.1 brings with it social networking integration, but that's already included on the Sony Ericsson X10, so doesn't really change much more than tapping on a friend's thumbnail in the list to get quick calling and messaging options.

It doesn't allow you to achieve things like messaging via Facebook or Twitter, or comment on status updates – in fact all it does allow is the ability to see what's been written by your buddies.

After the beautiful systems on offer from HTC with its Sense UI we were sad to see that Sony Ericsson still hasn't made an easy way to link up your contacts' profiles with their social networking equivalents.

This means if you want to add Facebook details to somebody's profile, you're forced to scroll through all your FB buddies to find the right one, and you can't even search to save some time.

Synchronising our entire phonebook took nearly four hours all in all – and we're not that popular. Joining contacts is a matter of holding down the contact entry in a list, then selecting 'Join Contacts'.

If the suggested Facebook contact isn't there, then you're out of luck - unless you've had the nouse to hit the tiny 'group' icon in the top left hand corner of the screen, these contacts aren't listed.

But once set up, the contact profile looked great we supposed – Facebook, call history, messaging and even the picture assigned all fitted together nicely, although if the Facebook or Twitter photo is used, the contact once again looks all grainy.


The call quality on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 was pretty abysmal in terms of volume – there were times when it was impossible to hear what the other person was saying if background noise was a little louder.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Pushing the phone into the ear didn't really help either – if anything the angular shape of the chassis hurt a little bit.

Reception was fine though – while it did drop out a few times and the Xperia X10 did stay connected to GSM when 3G was available, it was nothing that we haven't seen countless times on other smartphones on offer today.

The volume liked to drop to a lower level as well, which means every time you call you'll be pushing it back up again and again.

Calling and the contacts book on the Xperia X10 really show what this phone is all about - so full of potential but for some reason failing to deliver when it matters.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Messaging

We have to say that we're impressed with the messaging options on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 – there's very little that can't be achieved.

Email – both Exchange and POP webmail – is easily synchronised, with the former handled via Moxier Mail, the same seen on the LG Intouch Max GW620.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

But what is more annoying is that Exchange isn't supported by the X10 natively - instead, Moxier handles it, despite Android 2.1 bringing the functionality. Sure, it's a good enough option, but it feels a little backward having to use a seperate app still.

Yahoo Mail and other web-based accounts are easy to connect to, and the beauty of these is that the messages are shown in the Timescape as one of their own Splines (nope, we still hate that word. Why not call it Spines or Timelines? Ohhh... we get it.)

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

SMS is similarly good, especially as it's threaded in both the inbox and when looked at within a contact profile, with converting to an MMS a simple job of just attaching an object, which we always appreciate.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

There's even an option for instant messaging via Google Talk, which is pre-installed thanks to the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 running Android – it's a swift and simple-to-use application, although you're unlikely to have a lot of contacts online at any one time (like we said earlier: not popular).

But we've got bad news – the on-screen keyboard that was a disaster zone still isn't much better. It's still inaccurate and laggy, and what's worse is that it's very easy to hit the wrong key and end up deleting a word or worse - exiting the message altogether.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Of course you can always install another keyboard such as Swype (or the HTC one if you're feeling a little cheeky) and that improves matters somewhat, but the lag in the system means fast typing is still a no no.

Considering we're now used to the eerily accurate iPhone and HTC Desire/Legend, this is a real let down from Sony Ericsson.

But here's one bit of good news for social networkers: you can update your Twitter and Facebook status from the homescreen of Timescape, choosing where you want the update.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

So you might spell it wrong, but at least it's easy to tell your friends when you're looking for advice on whether your thing is supposed to be that colour (although you can't upload a photo of it unless you download a dedicated application).

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Internet

If you've read this review chronologically, you might have the impression that the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is a terrible phone.

It's not, and one of the areas it's a little bit better in is the internet browser - but sadly the new 2.1 hasn't done enough to keep it up to speed with the competition.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The Webkit-based browser is brilliant and takes full advantage of the 1GHz Snapdragon processor on board, whipping through webpages with no hint of slowdown.

Admittedly, this is more to do with the decent onboard Android browser than it is about Sony Ericsson developing a top-notch browser, but if you back the Android horse this is one of the benefits you're going to get.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Things like detailed bookmarks, which monitor your most visited sites to suggest bookmarks for you to add as well as presenting history in an easy to view layout all make interacting with the mobile internet that much easier on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10.

Infinite text reflow is also offered as well, meaning you can zoom in as closely as you want to the text and it will always reformat itself to fit the screen.

Except this is one of the failings - the only way to zoom in is to double tap, and then wait for the page to load and get the option to zoom in with the on screen magnifying glass.

Seriously Sony Ericsson, where is multi-touch? Pinch and zoom? When the Xperia X10 was first announced its omission was relatively acceptable - but now it's available on phones a third of the cost.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Similarly, there's no Flash video support; Android 2.2 brings this functionality, and while some YouTube clips will jump out to the dedicated player, there's no way to view videos from the likes of the BBC.

Accuracy on the web browser is also a little suspect at times too - trying to click on a link when zoomed out is pretty difficult to get right. That said, it's a problem that besets a number of smartphones these days, it's just we've seen some that manage to overcome it (like the Vodafone 360 Samsung H1, for instance).

There's also the option to share the web page you're looking at with others – the default option out of the box is to do so over email or SMS, but when you begin downloading applications like Facebook and Wordpress these will allow you to share the link as well.

The bookmarks you save can also be added to the home screen as thumbnail screengrabs, making it very easy to access the websites you want to look at the most.

If for some reason this web browser isn't for you, then there are a number of other of options available on the Android Market to play with – if you're after speed, check out the Opera browser; Firefox Mobile also offers the Awesome Bar and desktop synchronisation.

We were initially impressed with the internet performance of the X10 when we first used the phone, but the failure to add things like pinch to zoom and Flash video mask an otherwise slick and accurate browser.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Camera

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

If you're any kind of Sony Ericsson fan, you'll know that it has a long history of making phones with incredibly good cameras.

We've been looking forward to seeing what the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 would be like in terms of photography, and it's easily one of the best out there on the market, with an 8MP snapper with high-power LED flash.

Although the latter is odd - you can't actually use the flash like a flash; instead you have to turn on the 'photo light' and then take the pic. So lots of pictures of people with screwed up and squinty faces, then.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

However, every shot comes out crisp and clear, with a very quick shutter speed for a phone.

Sony Ericsson might not have piled on a huge amount of settings to play with, but there's more than enough to be messing around with to get the perfect picture nine times out of 10.

Smile shot, multiple autofocus and touch-to-take options mean that it's much easier to snap the photo you want, rather than watching your phone focus on things in the distance and blur up the foreground.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Another nice touch is that spinning the phone from landscape to portrait will change the UI accordingly, making it much easier to use the camera no matter which way you want to use it.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

PLEASANT: This simply divine lake scene shows how the X10 captures all aspects of detail in bright light

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

FOREGROUND: Here the touch-capture is used - the foreground is highlighted

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

THE OTHER ONE: Focusing on the sky, you can see the light meter changes accordingly

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

TOO LIGHT: With the exposure set right up

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

TOO DARK: And you would never have guessed it: with the exposure right down

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

OBSERVE THE DUCKS: But it's hard to see them from this distance

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

EXTREME CLOSE UP: The zoom merely crops the photo rather than adding a whole lot of detail when fully extended

Video is pretty darn good on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 too, with the camera offering a number of modes to shoot with, ranging from the basic 'good for web' resolution to WVGA.

HD video has been added to the mix and well, and it works pretty well too - we're in the middle of properly testing this (ie filming a loon dancing) and will be back with the results soon.

We believe it captures at 24fps, but the quality and smoothness of the footage is a little suspect at times in VGA mode. Overall, it's a good video recorder, but not the best in the world by a long way for a mobile phone.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Media

Sony Ericsson fans - this is where the Xperia X10 comes into its own - there's so much that you can do with the media player that other handset manufacturers just wish they could mirror.

The first thing to note is that once again Sony Ericsson has developed a special area where video, music and photos are handled, called Mediascape.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

While you might be worried that all your files will be offered up in Splines (damn that word) you need not fear - Mediascape is just a zone where all the entertainment elements are handled.

Divided up into Video, Music and Photo (as you might imagine) this is very icon-based. You can see which songs you've listened to the most, which videos have just been added, and, if enabled, the chance to see recommendations from Sony Ericsson's PlayNow arena.


The music section is very well stocked - not only does the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 excel sonically, it also manages to offer a very intuitive UI that makes skipping through tracks a breeze.

Each artist and song is given the 'Infinity' button, which takes you through to the mobile browser to search for more information on them through Google.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

You can also slide your finger along the bottom to find similar tracks from PlayNow, and also see videos from YouTube.

There's a slight issue in that it can sometimes be quite hard to hit the 'skip tracks' button on the music player, but apart from that there's not a lot wrong with the music player and clearly it takes cues from the Walkman range by Sony Ericsson.

Things like being able to update the album artwork from the phone (albeit only over Wi-Fi) are a really nice touch, and help place the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 above other mobiles in terms of media playback - perhaps even ahead of its own range.

PlayNow was also on hand to let you buy songs instantly - they came in at £1 (charged through your mobile bill) or £0.79 if you synchronised with PlayNow Arena. However, we have no idea how to do such a thing via the mobile, so we're not even sure if you can bring the price down on the Xperia X10 or if you only get that discounted rate online.

If you're thinking of buying this phone for a child, make sure you've got this element protected at the start - it's a very simple process to just buy a song from your mobile bill.

If only something like Nokia's Comes with Music could be integrated - this UI is a brilliant way to get unlimited tracks.


Video is similarly excellent, with the WVGA-resolution screen (the best from a Sony Ericsson phone thus far) pumping out brilliant quality footage. If you're being picky, you could say the fact it's a larger screen can make the pixels a little more obvious from time to time, but then again we're pretty sure 99% of people won't be bothered by that.

You can watch video in both portrait and landscape modes, with some pre-loaded stuff on the Xperia X10 (like classic World Cup goals) being better than the usual in-the-box content.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson must have decided that the X10 was going to be used for music videos a great deal, as the landing screen offers the chance to shuffle up your vids - we're pretty sure you wouldn't want to do this if you're only going to watch two hour movies.


The best way to describe the photo section of the Xperia X10 is in-depth - you get to do an awful lot from the basic interface.

The pics are presented in categories, all visible at once: recently taken, recently viewed, favourites and there's also an option to see your photos from Facebook and Picasa as galleries on your phone - nice to see and something you rarely see on other handsets.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

We're particularly impressed with the latter option - it quickly updates your albums on the phone, and allows you to swipe through them at a decent pace.

We're a little sad that the animation between each photo when swiping through isn't there - it means that we're forced to just wait as each snap loads.

But the main thing is there's a lot of functionality here - you can view your photos by favourites (which you can easily tag while going through), camera footage, memory card; in short pretty much every way.

You can also tag photos of your friends, although this takes a bit of time and in practice isn't that easy. Unless you only have one friend, in which case it would be a veritable breeze.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Battery life and Maps

Battery life is becoming ever more of an issue on today's smartphones, and it seems never more so than on Android handsets - we're starting to see a pattern of phones simply eating up their battery.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The HTC Desire, HTC Legend, Samsung Galaxy Portal and Acer Liquid all have noted issues with battery life for some people, lasting just over a day with general use.

The Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is in the same camp - despite having a 1500mAh battery, among the largest in the industry, the phone will run out of charge easily after a day's use.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

While at the first review we didn't label this a downside, the number of people complaining about the performance shows that this is an issue - smartphones need to last over a day under normal conditions (ie not using them constantly for eight hours) and the X10 doesn't manage to do this.

One thing to note - the X10 will charge to full, then drop 5% before charging again. It's not a big thing, but you might wonder why the phone seems to be losing charge faster than usual.

In an ideal world, these phones would last three days at least while managing push email, widget updating and all other manner of day-to-day use, but at the moment they're heavily constrained by the available technology.

However, if you want to improve battery life on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, there are a few things you can do: turning down the frequency of Timescape updates is a major one.

Push email from Moxier mail eats the battery, as do many of the widgets and turning the screen up to full brightness. If you dial all or some of these features down then you'll probably eke out around two days' use if you don't hammer the phone too much - but then again you shouldn't have to do that if you bought the phone with these purposes in mind.


There are two types of mapping applications on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, which is more relevant for UK users than their US counterparts.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Google Maps obviously offers the most familiar interface for most users and the new Android upgrade to 4.1.1 brings ever-greater functionality to the platform - Buzz, Latitude and more easily navigable information when searching for information on restaurants or attractions.

It's also blindingly quick on the Xperia X10, with GPS picking us up pretty quickly too (although in built-up areas it struggled somewhat to find and maintain a connection).

But downloading and scooting the maps was really quick, allowing us to find out where we are in super-fast time, which is what we'd be expecting with a phone of this calibre.

With this version of Google Maps, now the Android 2.1 update comes through you can use the live maps option to see where you are from the home screen at all times.

Google Maps has now advanced to the point it can function as a separate sat-nav option for both walking and driving, with a car mode offering larger buttons.

The use of this is excellent; for instance, if you're walking and look down at the map you're following, it will drop to 2D - lift it up in front of your face and you'll go 3D with landmarks. Awesome.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The other option on board the Xperia X10 is WisePilot, which is dedicated sat-nav software. It's certainly a fully featured GPS platform, making it easy to navigate from A to B without a hitch - although we did find the odd problem connecting up the GPS on occasion.

However, we're not sold on the idea of using a phone as a sat nav if we have to pay for the privilege, especially when we can do the same thing on the phone with Google Maps, and in our mind it's easier to use as well.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Connection and applications

There are all the connections you'd hope for on the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 that you'd hope for and expect on the Android platform - Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP connectivity, aGPS, 7.2Mbps HSDPA connection - all present and correct.

We're not sure the Wi-Fi is as powerful as it could be, as sometimes when we were two rooms away from the router we encountered issues holding the connection.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The GPS was also a little lacklustre at times as well, which we mentioned earlier, especially in the city. However, the Bluetooth was great and held the connection to our Jabra Clipper headphones without any drop in performance, unlike on the HTC Desire.

But the best item of connectivity was the way you could interact with the PC - not only is there the decent backup and repair software that's bundled on the memory card, but also Media Go, which works in a very similar way to iTunes and will help you dump your music collection onto the phone.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

As far as we could tell there was no mention of said software anywhere on or in the box for the Xperia X10 - if we hadn't gone rooting round the memory card, we wouldn't have found the install file, and we're sure a number of people wouldn't feel comfortable just installing something to see what it is.

But once up and running, it's a great suite of products, especially for media, and we're glad to see it's not just the same drag and drop offer once again.


The bundled applications with the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 are pretty minimal - there's the Quadrapop game and of course YouTube as standard, as well as Google Talk for instant messaging.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

It's the latest version of YouTube on the Xperia X10, meaning you can comment, rate and view related video with ease - there's also an option to watch things in higher quality, although over 3G this will struggle a bit.

HTML5 support means that the mobile version of YouTube is also accessible now, and that's certainly a step in the right direction, and the newer version of YouTube even allows portrait video watching so you can comment pointless banalities like everyone else at the same time.

Another new application with the Android 2.1 upgrade is Backup and Restore, which we really like. The main reason is you can save not only contacts and pictures to microSD, but you can also save messages too.

This is one of the hardest, but most-asked for, things to do simply on an Android phone; previously you'd have to download a separate app to do it.

You can even schedule constant back ups - it's a really nice application from Sony Ericsson and a nice nod to the consumer's actual needs.

With applications these days though, it's all about the post-purchase experience, and the Application Market for Android is getting better every day.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

There were 9,000 apps added in March alone to the portal, meaning it's likely to be staying on Apple's coat tails for the time being and making it a very compelling option for those trying to work out which operating system to back for their mobile phone.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Hands-on gallery

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test


Sony Ericsson Xperia X10: Verdict

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Specs | Price | Reviews | Test

The Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 - it's a phone that we had such high hopes for when we first caught wind of it in the middle of last year.

A 1GHz processor, innovative overlay, the best Android has to offer with great media playback and a supersonic camera? Yes please.

And the good news is that most of what we expected has come to pass - the Xperia X10 is a great phone at its core, with some great use of the Android operating system to push this phone up into the stellar smartphone category at times.

The update has helped somewhat with a few of the key issues we had with the handset overall - but the problem is other phones that have come out in the meantime have moved ahead as well in terms of functionality.

We liked

Where do we start? The WVGA high resolution screen is just great - responsive, expansive, and capable of displaying a large amount of information with little hassle.

The 1GHz processor has again been used well - most action whipped along with very little hint of lag or judderiness to annoy us - well, at least to begin with.

The Timescape overlay might be a little bit lightweight, but quickly becomes useful when you get the point of its function - to simply keep you updated. We'd have liked something a little more interactive - being able to click links in a tile would have been nice - but beyond that we generally enjoyed it.

Mediascape was also a powerful application for the entertainment side of things, offering far more than we've ever seen before from Android in terms of organising music, video and photos.

The camera, an 8MP effort, was great too - we've not seen much to match it, although we would have liked to be able to fiddle with the settings a little bit more to craft our snaps better, and that 'flash' issue is insane.

The Backup and Restore application is ace too - we loved the fact we had our messages saved without a worry.

And of course, the Xperia X10 also made use of things like the excellent Android web browser, the easy-to-use menu system and accessing the Application Market to improve the functionality of the phone instantly - we're glad to see Sony Ericsson is finally on board with the Google wagon.

We disliked

Sadly, Sony Ericsson built a few too many issues into the Xperia X10, something we're growing too used to saying with its phones.

The main culprit is the on-screen keyboard - it's awful. After a week's use, we were becoming more adept at it, but it still required a great deal of focus and effort to stay accurate.

The lag on the menu system when using Timescape as your home screen was ridiculous, and the slowdown when not employing any kind of task killer was almost terminal at times - why it hasn't been eradicated we don't know, and people will continue to have a real problem with this.

Battery life is a little on the suspect side too, with a day's use the most you can expect from the 1500mAh unit in most situations.

Audio quality on phone calls was also too quiet for our tastes, with people constantly being difficult to hear even in quieter situations.

Why there's no multi-touch despite the upgrade, we don't know. We can only assume that the hardware doesn't support it, and given the likes of the Orange San Francisco manage it with no problem, this is downright embarrassing.


We were quietly confident that the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 would be a front-running phone when we first heard about it - a complete Android overhaul and some top end specs were enough to have us drooling.

Then the phone came in for review, and we were disappointed. Laggy software, only Android 1.6 and a somewhat baffling system made it hard to see what had happened with Sony Ericsson - but there was hope with the Android 2.1 upgrade on the horizon.

Now that's landed, and a lot of the problems we had still haven't changed - meaning it must be the underlying hardware that's at fault.

Multi-touch is a must on today's handsets, as is a camera with a flash that fires when you take a photo.

Non-laggy interfaces that don't bog down are also important too - if you don't know how to kill background applications, then you'll downright hate the X10 at times.

It's more annoying that the Sony Ericsson X10 Mini is such a smashing little device - it's fast, quirky and basically does what you want it to do. That's what the bigger brother should have been, but an order of magnitude better.

We wouldn't go as far as saying we can't recommend the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, but in the time its taken to upgrade to Android 2.1, we're nearly two steps ahead in terms of platform from Google, and a slew of (often much cheaper) phones have appeared that are better than this one - and great phones like the HTC Desire are still the same price with much better performance.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 : Price

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Price. Click Here [via eBay]

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