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Gadget Friday

Taking inspiration from Aravis, I will be posting regular Gadget Friday posts for the geeky folk amongst us (guess that's just me then ;-)

We start today with what I consider the beginning of a new phase of convergence. First we had the Mobile+Camera, and now, those two monsters of teleco+electronics Sony Ericsson, have launched what I consider two of the most impacting devices for ages (well since the iPod anyway).

The leader of the pack when it comes to common High Street brands (we're ignoring stuff like Bang & Oluf, and Denon etc.) Sony has always been a leading player in domestic electronics (except in the mp3 world). Ericsson had always been, imho, the leading mobile phone designer for ages - despite Nokias market leading position. Ericsson were smart at creating the next-gen of feature laden and designer units. The merger of the two companies to form Sony Ericsson got off to a bit of a shaky start. However, it soon took off and the fruits of labour started to make large inroads into the consumer population. The P800, followed by the P900i dominated the boardroom (beside the Blackberry). The T610 and T630 - which moved onto the K700 - pretty much are the most reliable and robust camera phones around today. The Z600 has the lowest phone radiation of all phones (SAR of 0.12)

So now we have the convergence. The first Sony Ericsson Walkman phone, the W800i.

The Walkman phone claims a great separation of mp3 player to phone. Key features are a Memory StickDuo card for storage up to 2G, and 10 hours playback with phone on, and 30 hours playback with phone off. A built in 2mega-pixel camera helps too! A good review of the features here.

And the evolution of the K700, the brand new K750i.

The K750i has a smashing 2megapixel digicamera in a smallish unit that also has cool games and a radio! If this has a SAR radiation level of below 0.50, its definitely one for my pocket! I personally don't value a mp3 player in my mobile, though many people might.

I envisage that these two will pretty much take off, not rivaling the iPod dominance, but flooding the market of mobile phones easily. The key to this success, however, is going to be price. If i were the Sony Ericsson executives, I'd definitely be thinking of a small margin on each device, and even potentially loss-leading on one of them to grab the all important market share. Because, who in this era, hasn't had a Walkman (or similar) in the past? If Sony wants to reclaim their position, they'll have to do something clever with the price - especially since they've now done something clever with the gadgets!

This years Sony Ericsson models are on show here - one of them looks very enticing to me.



  1. Blogger Aravis says @ 6:35 pm
    "Gadget Friday" is a cool idea. Now I know who to turn to for all my gadget needs. :0)

    These phones look cool. Like you, I wonder what the cost will be.

    Thanks for posting about it.
  2. Blogger Damo says @ 7:18 pm
  3. Blogger B1RDIE Num Num says @ 7:39 pm
    Here Here.

    Not sure if Picture Messaging has taken off in America, but its really good fun here in the UK. At first people were reluctant, the sheer price of the message was a deterrent.

    But now the price is affordable, lots more people are taking advantage of it. Its really neat to be able to send a picture of an event or situation to someone, rather than describe or type it into an SMS.

    These phones bring the concept to a new level, in that the orginal picture remains, but in a 2Megapixel format, which is an amazingly good size of picture to come off a phone!

    The Walkman phone is a good idea too, though again, the price is key.
  4. Blogger SwissToni says @ 9:50 pm

    I've always been a nokia man myself. I'm due an upgrade at the moment, but I'm not enticed by anything that's out there at the moment. A camera might be good for blogging purposes, and bluetooth may be handy, but I haven't seen something that wants me to change. The sony-erikssons look okay, but I really,really like the nokia interface and I'm reluctant to change. Worth a punt then, in your opinion....?? I think the one my network will let me have is the white one?

    I'm not being very helpful am I daddy?

  5. Blogger B1RDIE Num Num says @ 10:18 pm
    OK ST, lets cut to the chase.

    Change is hard. But Change is also sometimes for the better.

    You're an intelligent chap (even if you don't believe it baldy ;-) and I reckon you'd take to the Sony Ericsson way of doing things after a little hard graft of losing bad habits.

    Everyone I know, and I mean everyone i know (including Icy), who claimed to be a Nokia fan and tried a Sony Ericsson, took to them and agreed it was a better way of doing things.

    The problem is defintely the first two weeks. During that time, the mind and thumbs have to get used to doing things differently. But then you'll realise that the new way is more flexible.

    Let me know what network you're on, and I'll help you find a decent deal to try out. Remember --- you have 14 days to decide if you like the unit before you permanently accept it. So if I were you, I'd follow a few tricks I can tell you about ;-)
  6. Blogger SwissToni says @ 10:35 pm
    I'm so glad I know you!

    O2... thanks.

  7. Blogger the urban fox says @ 12:20 pm
    "Change is hard. But Change is also sometimes for the better." Wise words, mate. (in non-Smashie voice)
  8. Blogger Damo says @ 7:52 pm
    Yep, I'm a Sony Ericcson convert too. And I might one day upgrade my T610, because the only slight issue is that the camera's a bit rubbish.
  9. Blogger Lord Bargain says @ 8:46 am
    I have no idea what you're all on about.

    All I know is that I need a new phone as the number "4" button on my Nokia doesnt work.

    This makes texting anything with a "g", "h" or "i" in it pretty difficult, as well as being something of a problem when your home phone number has four consecutive "4"s in it, and the alternative is to search for "home" in the list (which you cant do either as it begins with an "h").

  10. Blogger B1RDIE Num Num says @ 8:49 am
    Have a chat with ST - I've given him the lowdown on the ins and outs of the mobile world as I see it. Its no way definitive but it could be helpful.
  11. Blogger the urban fox says @ 11:45 am
    I need to get a new phone too. Mine keeps switching itself off for fun. Would you post your lowdown on here, B1rds, as a public service to Lord B and me?
  12. Blogger the urban fox says @ 1:49 pm
    PS: Has anyone here changed their network and moved their existing number across to the new one? Is it easy-ish or an utterly hellish palaver? Advice welcomed. Sorry for hijacking your thread, B1rdie.
  13. Blogger Damo says @ 2:10 pm
    I would say ask your dealer. It can be horribly complicated. I'm on Virgin Mobile and they make it incredibly easy - take your sim out, buy a new phone (with £10 off for not needing a SIM) and chuck it in that. But some nasty operators do everything they can to stop you easily and cheaply switching about.

    I'd recommend Virgin Mobile to anyone, I have to say.
  14. Blogger B1RDIE Num Num says @ 2:55 pm
    Very quickly then:

    1) There is no benefit in being a long standing customer who doesn't sign a new 1 year contract every year. The benefits go to new customers only - like the tv advert for mortages. So every 13 months, go to the shops and pretend you are buying a new price plan and phone from scratch.

    2) Porting your number is easy peasy. Tell existing operator you are wanting a PAC code. They'll give it to you. You immediately give it to the new Operator (with whom you have already signed a deal) they then organise a cutover date. Old operator charges up till then, and on that day, the number goes to the sim automatically. Done it three times now, and only once did it go wrong due to a server error.

    3) Carphone Warehouse give better deals all round in terms of better customer service post purchase.

    4) You have 14 days to exchange a phone if you don't like it. Simple as that.

    5) Online tariffs are cheaper by far, but have atrocious customer service.

    6) Shop around on your 13th month, and get what you want. The money is in your signature, so they'll throw in goodies if you go to someone who needs it more than others.
  15. Blogger Lord Bargain says @ 8:38 am
    unless of course it is a company mobile in which case you have to sit here twiddling your thumbs until someone gets around to sorting you a new one.

    whistle whistle whistle
  16. Blogger Damo says @ 9:52 pm
    I've never used anything like, say, even £50 in phone credit in a year. There's just no point being tied into a monthly deal...
  17. Blogger the urban fox says @ 1:16 am
    Thanks B1rdie, you're a gent.

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