The first Android handset from Sony Ericsson, the Xperia X10 is “designed to deliver the best user experience in communication, social media and entertainment,” according to the company.
It features new “Timescape” and “Mediascape” applications that can automatically recognise links between the phone’s contact book and social networking friends, and combine these into a chronological, 3D display of recent activities. Another cool feature is the ability to retrieve related content from the same artist from the internet while listening to a song.
The phone’s camera also has the ability to recognise faces, and automatically tag them ready for uploading to sites such as Facebook. The phone also includes features such as Google Maps street view, push email and calendar, video recording and streaming, album art, microSD expansion and stereo Bluetooth. A standard 3.5mm headphone jack means it can support most existing pairs of headphones.
The phone comes without a hefty price tag though; at an unlocked price of $1099 it’s $380 more expensive than an iPhone with the same amount of included memory (8GB);. However since the Xperia runs Android, it has a less restrictive App Store (the Android Marketplace) and an open-source based browser.
The phone will be available on 4 May from Telstra, free on a $110 a month plan over 24 months. The plan also includes a fairly miserly 150MB of data each month.
The second phone in Sony Ericsson’s new line-up is the Vivaz, a handset specifically designed for HD video recording on the go and which, by virtue of its extensive feature set, shows why the writing is on the wall for pocket camcorders such as the Flip and Bloggie.
The Vivaz can capture 1080p video from a rear-mounted camera and can then upload the footage via Wi-Fi to YouTube. The phone doubles as an 8.1 megapixel digital still camera with smile and face detection, and a GPS chip for geo-tagging. The phone also connects directly to Facebook to enable quick sharing with friends of photos.
There’s also a large touchscreen on the front of the handset to navigate the menus and take stills, and instead of being flat like other phones, the Vivaz is designed to fit the natural curve of one’s hand.
The Vivaz will be released unlocked in Australia from 5 May. Pricing is yet to be announced.