When the Cocoon is in the ‘Nest’ its microSD card slot, battery release catch and headphones connector (which doubles as the mains power and PC link connectors) are all covered. The ‘Nest’ offers alternatives with separate PC/mains and headphones connectors and a 3.5mm headset jack too. To add to the music playing options O2 provides a 3.5mm headset splitter so you can share tunes with someone else. Cute.
As for battery life, I got continuous playback from a full charge for four and a quarter hours. This is hardly record breaking and a long way from the 15 hours O2 says you can get in ‘Cocoon mode’ i.e. with the phone closed. But I did have the handset opened and forced the screen to stay on during playback as I always do wherever possible for battery test, so my four and a quarter hours is a minimum figure which I am sure you can improve on.
The loudest speaker volume is very quiet indeed. This is odd given the stereo speakers sitting either side of the clam hinge, and the phone’s overall musical pretensions.
There is a tiny camera sitting just above the screen for video calling and a 2-megapixel lens on the front fascia. I found this took an age to settle after I’d pressed the shutter button so that images of anything moving were very difficult to shoot.
That notwithstanding, photos aren’t all that bad. The coloured dish, my standard reference shot photographed indoors under normal household lighting is fairly bright and well defined. The outdoor photos, taken on a gloomy day, are clear though as ever you can see evidence of data compression.
Other applications not already mentioned include a notepad, voice recorder, world clock and alarms, stopwatch, data converter and a couple of games. You get some PC software for synchronising contacts and diary and the required cable.
O2 is sticking its neck out with the own-designed Cocoon in a world so dominated by third party mobile phone manufacturers. While the Cocoon is quirky and won’t appeal to all, I take my hat off to O2 for coming up with something very different and overall I rather like it. I hope the company has more to come.