Never one to shirk his duties I forced myself to attend a brilliant private concert with Get Cape Wear Cape Fly last night, all so I could bring you news of the latest handsets from this Sony Ericsson sponsored event... *cough*
Along with the previously announced (and highly desirable) W960i, SE showed off the anticipated W890i, W380i, and K660i but sadly not the much rumoured 'P5i' - a touchscreen based super phone with crazy specs (5MP camera, 2.8in VGA LCD, GPS, WiFi, 125g) which we'll have to put to bed for now.
King of the hill therefore in this trio is the W890i (above left), the follow up to the very popular W880i in SE's Walkman line which brings 3G, an improved 3.2MP camera and larger 2in QVGA screen. The W890i is as slim as its bulimic predecessor (9.9mm thick) and barely tips the scales at 78g. A 2GB Memory Stick Micro card is also bundled. Does the W890i fill the gaps found in the W880i? I think so...
Also expanding the Walkman range is the W380i, a midrange GSMer whose killer feature is its 'Gesture Control' which allows users to mute calls or silence the alarm by simply sweeping a hand over the exterior.
Being a Walkman handset the W380i also comes with the line's standard fare including TrackID and PlayNow compatibility and is also bolstered by an FM tuner. Sadly the camera is rather measly at 1.3MP, there just a 512MB M2 card in the box and at 92 x 49 x 16mm and 100g it isn't that pocket friendly. Still, expect it not to break the bank.
Finally, the K660i is a 3G web focused phone with zoom capable landscape browsing, controllable mouse pointer and dedicated shortcut keys that only appear when surfing. Google Maps is also integrated (though no GPS) while a 2MP camera thickens the feature set. At 104 x 47 x 15mm and 95g it is certainly portable too while a multimedia player provides video and audio support.
The W890i, W380i and K660i will all appear in Q1 '08 with prices subject to contract but I'd be surprised if a decent sized monthly contract didn't make them free.
In related news Sony Ericsson has also announced its first USB mobile broadband modem. The 'MD300' can work at speeds of up to 3.6Mbps, measures just 70 x 32.5 x 15mm and usefully has 128MB of user accessible memory. It is compatible with Windows 2000, XP, Vista and all Mac OS X variants (including Leopard) and will be available in either black or silver again in Q1 2008.
In addition (and unsurprisingly) SE has confirmed it turned down an offer from Google to join the Open Handset Alliance. I don't think anyone is particularly surprised...