The latest Sony Ericsson Walkman phone may not be the much anticipated W950i but it still packs one heck of a punch.
Announced today, the W850i is a splendidly equipped slider with 2in QVGA (240 x 320) display, 2MP digital camera, tri-band and UMTS connectivity, push email and Bluetooth 2.0. It’s compact at just 98 x 47 x 21mm and weighs 116g.
More important than mere specs however is the integration of the new v2.0 Walkman software. Sony Ericsson promotes this as a radical overhaul of the previous incarnation with an improved user interface and integrated online music purchases directly from the handset. These should download pretty quickly too using its 3G capabilities, as long as your contract can afford it.
Furthermore, the Gracenote Mobile MusicID system is pre-installed meaning Sony clips can be recorded from the radio uploaded to Gracenote and the artist, track and album details texted back within minutes. MP3, AAC, AAC+, eAAC+ and M4A audio formats are supported and a 1GB MemoryStick Duo Pro card is bundled (though it has support for up to 4GB). Rather handily, web browsing can be also done in landscape mode to provide extra width and it can handle RSS feeds.
A Q3 time frame has been slapped on the W850i and even the colour blind can see it’s available in either “Precious” Black or “Golden” White (whatever Golden White means…).
SE has also pushed out three slightly more sedate clamshell handsets today in the shape of the Z710, W710 and Z550 (below, left to right). The 710s feature two megapixel cameras and EDGE, with the Z550 having a 1.3MP-er and GPRS. There are 262k, 176 x 220 pixel displays, Bluetooth and email functionality all round and none are particularly obese with the 710s measuring 88mm x 48mm x 24.5mm and weighting 101g with the Z550 a little more slim line at 87.5mm x 45.4mm x 20.5mm and 92.5g. Ho hum.