updated 02:50 pm EST, Sun February 10, 2008
Sony-Ericsson W980 Z770
Sony-Ericsson this afternoon claimed to have some of the best music and web phones yet with the announcement of two more devices in its Mobile World Congress lineup. The W980 clamshell is the device maker's new flagship Walkman phone and includes 8GB of built-in flash memory to hold most users' whole collections without needing an external card. Audio-enhancing functions as well as premium earbuds also provide better listening than most devices in the class, the company touts. In an unusual spin for Sony-Ericsson phones, an FM transmitter is built in along with a receiver, allowing the W980 to beam music to nearby stereos or even other phones with FM radios.
An external LCD and controls let owners quickly skip tracks or check caller ID without having to flip open the handset; shake control from other Walkman phones also allows quick song changes without touching a button. With a 3.2-megapixel camera coming as standard, the W980 is due in the summer and is likely to appear in North America with quad-band GSM and EDGE data support.
A second device, the Z770 [link active soon], is focused more on the web: it adds 3G-level HSDPA and UMTS data for Europe and includes a unique direction pad interface that provides a "magnetic" mouse pointer onscreen, replicating some of the experience of browsing on a computer without an expensive touchscreen. It also boasts ActiveSync support for Microsoft Exchange contacts and e-mail, as well as Google Maps for Mobile. Including a 2-megapixel camera, the Z770 is due to reach Europe in spring.