Smartphone review preview: Sony Ericsson Xperia X1

Sony's Ericsson Xperia X1, the company's first Windows Mobile based device in years, was recently unveiled.

Sony's Ericsson Xperia X1, the company's first Windows Mobile based device in years, was recently unveiled. Sony Ericsson made headlines earlier this week by announcing the Xperia X1, its first Windows Mobile smartphone after years of making devices based on Symbian/UIQ.

An early version of this device is on display now at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, and Brighthand's Kevin O'Brien was able to spend some time with it. Sony Ericsson is greatly limiting what it will allow reporters to do with the prototypes, but O'Brien still put together some initial thoughts on this upcoming product.

He said:

The Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 is without a doubt the star product to be announced at Mobile World Congress 2008.

This smartphone will have the best screen out of any other Windows Mobile device to date, and without a doubt coming close to being equal with the Apple iPhone display. The touch surface is extremely responsive, having no lag when waving your finger across the screen. Image quality and backlight levels are top notch, which should help this phone compete with other media playing devices.

The main advertised feature of this smartphone at MWC was the tile home screen layout, giving a page preview layout of nine programs that you can quickly tap or shuffle through to find what you want. This is where I felt the screen and user interface really came through, with great lag-free animation when you shuffle through each screen preview.

Build quality was great, and the device felt very solid even with the keyboard extended. I can't wait till these things start shipping to hopefully replace my ancient clunky Motorola Q.

Video preview

An overview of the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1
This smartphone will include a 3-inch WVGA (800 by 480 pixel) touchscreen that can slide aside to reveal a QWERTY keyboard. Other navigation options will be a four-way key and an optical joystick.

The X1 will be a quad-band GSM phone with support for the 3G frequencies used around the world. It will also have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

This Windows Mobile Professional device will include up to 400 MB of internal storage, and a Memory Stick Micro card slot for additional storage.

In addition, this model will include aGPS, a 3.2 megapixel camera, and an FM receiver.

It will be 4.3 inches wide, 2.1 inches tall, and 0.66 inches thick (110 mm x 53 mm x 16.7 mm). It will weigh 5.1 oz. (145 g).

Sony Ericsson says the XPERIA X1 will debut in the U.S. in the second half of 2008. The company is not yet willing to say what this model will cost.

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