Obligatory micro-review of my new phone, the Sony Ericsson K700i.
I guess the first and most important thing is that I feel that this phone is an improvement on my previous one (the SE Z600) in pretty much every way. The most important things to me so far are:
- The user interface is vastly better, a really great evolution of the previous SE UI, which I always liked. If you're interested, here's a decent review of the new SE UI on MobileBurn. I can't even list all the improvements I've noticed already; a lot of thought has clearly been put into it. I find it very significantly more efficient and intelligent to use, and most of the little niggling complaints I had with the Z600's UI are gone.
- Much better memory capacity (the K700i has 41Mb).
- It plays MP3s, and can use them as ringtones. I've got Layla on there right now, along with some choice Dire Straits, Thin Lizzy and Van Halen riffs. Oh yes.
- Slightly better camera (VGA, 640x480).
- It's smaller than the Z600 overall, and I'm certain that Lauren and most of the folk at uni will be pleased that it's not a flip-phone (no more "Captain's Log...").
- The themes are lot nicer; they're animated for one thing, and the default ones included on the phone are actually genuinely attractive. I'm currently using the Lumic theme for now; you can see a screenshot here which totally doesn't do it justice. The O2-contributed one is of course as garish as ever.
It’s worth mentioning that I initially had trouble getting iSync to recognise the phone, but when I deleted the Bluetooth pairing on both devices and then paired them again from the phone, all was well. I also noticed with interest that OS X seems to have the built-in ability to use the K700i as a basic remote control, without needing to have Salling Clicker or such. Handy.
So, complaints now; just two really:
- The buttons initially seemed rather too close-together compared to the Z600's (which has the best buttons I've ever seen on any mobile phone; slightly recessed from the surface, well spaced, solid and edge-lit in blue), but I'm becoming used to them.
- The 4-way switch on the K700i is actually a tiny joystick, instead of the Z600's ring-shaped rocker switch with a separate centre button. I sometimes find it hard to press the joystick directly inwards without accidentally triggering one of the directions, but again that will come through practice.
Overall then I’m really pleased with the new phone. I’ve not encountered the battery life issues that a fair few people have talked about in the past, so I assume that my phone has the newer firmware which addresses the issue. It’s comfortable to hold and has great reception, and other than getting used to the new button layout and shape of the phone, I’ve had no problems at all.
Based on my previous phone and this new one, I think I’ll be sticking with Sony Ericsson handsets for the foreseeable future. I thank you.