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Sony Ericsson Xperia X8 review

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Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia X8
  • Xperia X8 White Mobile Phone - O2

Summary

Our Score:

7

User Score:

Pros

  • Relatively Small
  • Full Android Smartphone
  • Low Cost
  • Decent Headset Included

Cons

  • Cramped Screen
  • Poor Typing Experience
  • Mediocre Battery Life

Key Features

  • Small size
  • Android OS (2.1)
  • Touchscreen
  • 600MHz CPU
  • Manufacturer: Sony Ericsson
  • Review Price: free/subscription

Sony Ericsson has had a bit of a topsy turvy time with its Android phones over the years. Its first few attempts, including the Xperia X1 and Xperia X10, didn't quite get the balance right but the X10 mini and X10 mini pro both impressed us and were intriguing options if you were looking for a particularly small phone.

The company's latest attempt, then, is the Xperia X8. It sits somewhere between the X10 mini and full-size X10 in terms of size, making for a small-but-not-tiny Android smartphone. It's also relatively inexpensive at just £130, or free on £15pm contracts.

The X8's design is a tough one to nail down. It's clearly not the most elegant device going and its plastic construction certainly makes itself known. However, it feels solid and well put together, and has a certain charm. If colour's your thing, you'll be pleased to know the backplate is available in a variety of thereof, though the front remains pearlescent white whichever you choose.

Where perhaps the phone most prominently shows its budget orientation is the front and more specifically the screen. The markedly grey (rather than black) and plastic 3in rectangle is slightly recessed into the bezel, which slighty hampers usability. The bezel is also rather wide, making the screen appear smaller than it actually is.

Otherwise, the general hardware of the X8 is rather impressive. The three buttons under the screen are responsive and easily distinguished while the sides are home to more features than you might expect at this price.

Up top there's a microUSB socket (underneath a somewhat annoying plastic flap), the power/screen lock button, and headphone socket that is compatible with Sony Ericsson's inline headsets – thus the odd shape. A headset that provides reasonable quality audio and decent noise isolation comes in the box however it isn't actually of the aforementioned Sony Ericsson proprietary type.

The left and bottom edges are devoid of features but on the right is a volume rocker and, joy of joys, a shutter button for the camera. Finally, there's the camera itself that sits on the back, sadly without an LED flash to accompany it.

Carrier pricing updates & information supplied by WhistleOut

Chris 16

January 20, 2011, 1:29 pm

Nicely written review, however I do get disappointed when it ends 'there are better cheap Android smartphones out there.' without continuing with 'like the (enter the better phone names here)' This seems a bit of a theme at trustedreviews and it would be great to give us the better alternatives without us having to become Inspector Clouseau!

simonm

January 20, 2011, 2:46 pm

@Chris 16 - The Orange San Francisco is an obvious example.





£99 on PAYG and unlockable for free, it has 512MB RAM and an 800x480 AMOLED (or it did... more recent units seem to be mostly TFT). Think it has the same processor as the Sony (MSM7227), which although only 600MHz has a decent GPU and seems acceptable to me. Perhaps the extra RAM helps.





Not everybody likes the San Francisco, to be fair, but I think at sub-£100 it's extraordinary.

Hoggypotter

January 20, 2011, 3:09 pm

I agree with simonm. I purchased the San Francisco recently and am very impressed. I unlocked it for free and then rooted it with Android 2.2 from modaco.com. It really is an excellent phone apart from the camera. HTC should hang their heads in shame for what they are charging for the Wildfire, Desire etc...

Epic

January 20, 2011, 4:43 pm

+1 San Francisco also has the micro-SD slot that Ed seems to think is a big deal in a budget phone. Definitely hard to beat at £89.99 from Argos.

hankb6d

January 20, 2011, 5:07 pm

Thanks for pointing me towards San Francisco guys. At this price point I may dip for a smartphone.





What next the HTC "Luton"?





From the review what I want to know, is the web browser may struggle with Flash when it supports it? I'm confused? Android update? does Android even support flash? or will it struggle with just flash heavy sites?





Any clarification most appreciated!!!

Stelph

January 20, 2011, 5:50 pm

@Hank - Hahaha im not sure the Luton would have a great uptake, the San Fransisco is actually called the ZTE Blade (as it is made by ZTE) but it is branded and sold in the UK as the San Fransisco by Orange.





I would guess that flash is possible but with the (relativly) weak processor in the San Fran it wouldnt be a great experience, TBH I dont think any mobile OS has a particularly good handling of Flash websites at the moment, maybe the top end Android phones but ive even seen those lag. For a good Flash experience we will probably need the dual core processors that are coming out this year

Zero

January 20, 2011, 5:55 pm

I have this phone and there very few thing to complain about. Firstly the camera is very very poor, as the review tells you. I also think the loudspeaker on the phone could be a lot louder. it is acceptable, but I feel that it should have a somewhat louder speaker. When its in you hand and you play music it just feels like it should be louder. But the plus to this, is the positioning of the speaker you hand can cup it making it appear louder.....

hankb6d

January 20, 2011, 8:59 pm

@stelph





Thanks a lot Stelph, the passage about Flash just confused the hell out of me. A new phone this weekend looks likely.

Alex 11

January 20, 2011, 11:41 pm

The San Francisco (or any other phone with a MSM7227 processor-- which includes the SE X8) won't get Adobe Flash support as it (currently) requires an ARMv7 processor (from what I have read it's not just the speed that is required but also the extended instruction set). The best we could hope for the San Francisco is Flash lite support.

mjaffk

January 21, 2011, 5:19 am

Um.. what about Silverlight lol?

Maxifocus

November 3, 2011, 9:04 pm

Hey, does anyone knows how can I unlock mi X8 for free?? I live in argentina.. and here I have to pay a lot for unlock!

Richard

December 13, 2012, 8:14 pm

Hi! this is a concerned customer, i bought an Experia x8 barely three
months ago and i guess among the many phones that i have used this has
given me the most headaches, 1st it goes off whenever it feels like, 2nd
i cant finish making a call without going off on its self, 3rd
overheating, i reported the phone to the shop where i bought and i was
adviced to uninstall some applications i had installed but this didnt
bare fruits, so here is my question: was these phone sold on discounted
prices because they were faulty or whats wrong? i cant imagine buying a
sony ericson products again.....please advice.

Pedro M.J. Wyns

March 13, 2013, 9:53 am

your battery needs replacement. nothing more, cheap on ebay..

Emma

May 8, 2013, 12:19 pm

This is by far the worst phone I have ever had! From the start I noticed problems such as not being able to hang up phone calls as the screen would go blank. I then had a new (but same model) handset, which had the same problems so it must just be the model. The phone has always been extrememly slow (even if i deleted all apps and data off it), turns itself off when it feels like and takes an age to do anything I need it to do- often a 10 second delay when I press buttons. Camera very poor and no flash. Finally due for upgrade so can't wait to get a reliable phone at last!

Zach Smith

June 29, 2013, 10:46 am

This was by far the worst phone i have ever had. I am not going to list all the faults with it cause ill be here till tomorrow listing them. simple answer is DONT GET IT!!

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