updated 09:35 am EST, Thu January 29, 2009
Sony E Premier3 and S001
As part of a sweeping update to KDDI's phone lineup, Sony Ericsson has launched a pair of handsets that both have features often left out of non-Japanese cellphones. The Cyber-shot S001 has the 8-megapixel camera still rare for the company but centers on an extremely sharp, 854x480 OLED display with enough color saturation to help previewing photos or watching 1Seg digital TV. The camera itself also has features closer to dedicated cameras with shooting up to the equivalent of ISO 1,600, image stabilization and detection of both faces and smiles.
A new BRAVIA Postcards feature creates TV-friendly photo postcards optimized both for widescreen sets and for more recent Japanese Sony Ericsson phones. The phone comes with a 1GB microSD card for storage and supports both GSM and 3G for use outside of its home country. Sony Ericsson promises a release on KDDI in late March.
The Premier3 (Premier Cube) is an unusual approach to Walkman phones that has an LCD with the same resolution as the S001 but in a swiveling design that converts into a notebook-like form factor for watching video. It comes with a more conventional 3.2-megapixel camera but promises better-than-average audio quality and a dedicated external remote for controlling music without reaching for the phone itself.
Like the S001, the Premier3 also has 1Seg TV tuning and world GSM/3G support but comes with a larger 2GB card to hold more music. However, the Premier3 ships much later and isn't due until September.