Sony Ericsson Vivaz Review

Introduction and Design
This is a global GSM phone. It can be used with AT&T and with T-Mobile USA without 3G. The American versionsupports AT&T's 3G network.


The currently available cell phones capable of HD video capture are still scarcer than chicken teeth. Of course, the undisputed leader in this market niche today is Samsung with their OMNIA HD i8910. The upcoming Samsung Wave S8500 and Samsung Beam I8520 are clear evidence the manufacturer intends to retain and strengthen its position. Said handsets happen to be, however, rather bulky.

With the announcement of the Sony Ericsson Vivaz, the company showed its determination to fight for a chunk of the market of HD video capable cell phones and that such functionality does not necessarily equate to bulky size and hefty weight. The Vivaz is the second model of the “communication entertainment” series, with the Xperia X10 being the first. To win over customers, the device does not rely only on its capable 8-megapixel camera only, but proper multimedia functionality as well.

The Sony Ericsson Vivaz is a high-end smartphone based on Symbian S60 5th Edition (also known as the Symbian^1) and the same personalized interface as the software-updated Sony Ericsson Satio. The Vivaz comes with 3.2-inch resistive screen, Wi-Fi with DLNA, HSDPA, GPS, accelerometer, FM radio, 720MHz processor and OpenGL ES 2.0 support.

What’s inside the box of the Sony Ericsson Vivaz?

•    The Sony Ericsson Vivaz
•    8GB microSD card
•    Stylus
•    Wall charger
•    microUSB cable
•    Stereo headset (the Sony Ericsson HPM-60/J with 3.5mm jack)
•    User guide in several languages


The outward appearance of the Vivaz follows the overall styling introduced by the Xperia X10 and the cell phone looks contemporary, elegant and pleasing. We are reviewing the black device that appears more buttoned-down and austere alongside of the other color solutions the handset is available in - red, grey and blue. They look more offbeat and lively, not last due to the easily recognizable and glossy sides. The Sony Ericsson Vivaz is entirely made from plastic that feels enjoyable to touch. Throw the compact size and low weight of the cell phone into the deal and you’ve got a really likable device.

You can compare the Sony Ericsson Vivaz with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

As we have already mentioned, the Sony Ericsson Vivaz features 3.2-inch resistive display with the standard for a Symbian S60 5th Edition handset native resolution of 360x640 pixels. We do not have any major gripes relating to the screen sensitivity, given the particular technology it integrates. Naturally, it would have been much better if it was capacitive, but we can live with that. The resistive technology is easy to get used to and the learning curve is not steep.

We do like the screen - it supports 16mln colors and delivers saturated, beautiful colors despite being a TFT and not AMOLED display. Unfortunately, things change radically if you take the device outdoors, because even if it does not turn into an almost flawless mirror in direct sunlight, you will definitely have troubles managing to distinguish what’s on screen. The issue is, at least partly, result of the unfaltering love for fingerprints of the latter.

What you have above and below the screen are power on/off button, earpiece, video call camera, send and end keys and a button to access the main menu and task manager (if held pressed for a while). The 3.5mm jack, microUSB port and loudspeaker are on the left hand side, while the volume rocker and two separate camera shutters keys are on the opposite. The latter two make for a novelty feature that we do like, because you no longer need to waste time getting to the relevant setting to switch between picture/video shooting modes and starting the camera in the mode you need is just a simple press away.

The manufacturer’s name and logo are clearly visible on the plastic back panel, along with the letters “HD” and the single opening for the lens and LED flash of the 8-megapixel camera. Everything seems just fine, but we are slightly troubled by the lack of a protective flap to shield them against scratches, dust and more severe injuries - without its 8-megapixel camera, the Sony Ericsson Vivaz would have been yet another ordinary S60 5th Edition smartphone.

Sony Ericsson Vivaz 360 Degrees View:

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