updated 11:20 am EDT, Tue May 22, 2007
Sony-Ericsson this morning launched an early attack against the iPhone with the W52S, a Walkman-themed slider for Sony's home of Japan. The design pushes music and video playback without requiring add-ons: in addition to 2GB of built-in memory, the phone acceps up to 2GB more through a microSD slot. The difficult balance of battery life for music and phone use is also taken care of through the design, according to the creator. An extra-high capacity battery will play music for up to 100 hours, leaving enough room even in heavy use for important calls. A very large 2.7-inch screen provides a widescreen display for movies and a tall display for choosing contacts or music. A 2-megapixel camera at the back plus a front camera provide photos and videos.
Part of KDDI's new line of phones for 2007, the W52S is coming in early June under the carrier's au brand and its CDMA-based network. As with many of Sony-Ericsson's Japanese releases, however, the new slider isn't expected to leave the country for North America or other regions that might support its service.