Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Review
The phone book has also been personalized by Sony Ericsson. Perhaps the most easily noticeable alteration is the addition of the alphabet on the right that allows for fast filtering of entries. You also have constant access to a search tab and the option to find contacts based on both parts of the name. Finally, you can update your current status on various social networks directly from the phone book (just like in Timescape).
This not all about the social integration though. Individual entries can be assigned a Facebook or Twitter profile, meaning the online status of the person will be visible in the phone book. This is a really cool function that we saw enabled in the first version of HTC Sense. Unfortunately, in the case of the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, you have to add the profile information for each contact individually. Sadly, you cannot search in the list of social networking contacts. So, how do you add the Facebook profiles of 250 people? No way! Sony Ericsson needs to work on improving this aspect, because the function is virtually unusable at this time.
The phone contacts themselves can be enriched with various details, like phone numbers, email, chat account, postal address, notes etc.
The options relating to bringing order to your daily grind have had a facelift. The alarms application allows you to choose the appearance of the clock, which will appear, while the handset is trying to wake you up. The calendar is the standard program that comes with Android and allows for visualizing events in daily, weekly, monthly and agenda modes. Adding entries is done in pretty much the standard way and all of them can be set as all-day events, plus they can be assign recurrence pattern. The presence and privacy options are here as well and you can add descriptions for improved clarity.
There is a standard calculator with several complex options, but we were caught off guard by its design. It´s as if the application has been developed for displays with lower resolution, meaning it does not fit the screen, but appears in a window.
Composing messages remains an overused cell phone function, no matter how high-tech and feature-rich a smartphone may be. We have to admit the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is somewhat disappointing with this respect.
Messages are visualized in threaded style, which is very convenient indeed. However, we just don’t have a clue why you don’t have access to the landscape QWERTY layout when typing in a text message, while the layout is at your disposal to compose emails. We hope the issue affects our unit only. The portrait layout comes with keys that are a bit thin, so it's not the most comfortable there is. The space bar is tiny and we quite often (and erroneously) pressed the full stop button next to it instead. The landscape QWERTY is much more comfortable, since its buttons are large enough and there is enough room in between keys.
As we have already mentioned, Sony Ericsson have pre-installed applications for Microsoft Exchange servers and they are more than welcome. Setting up and using multiple email accounts is both simple and convenient.
As you might have guessed already, the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 was born to be connected to the Internet. Using Timescape and Mediascape means you need internet connection almost all the time, so a proper data plan is virtually mandatory. The handset supports HSDPA 10.2Mbit/s and Wi-Fi 802.11b/g.
The default browser of the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is the standard application of Android and people who have used the HTC Hero or Google Nexus One will certainly find it a bit antiquated. It is snappy and allows for smooth scrolling, but lacks the option for zooming via double taps. You can zoom on page elements in predefined steps using the two screen buttons in the bottom right corner of the screen, although there is no image spanning via multitouch or keeping your finger pressed against the display. The browser does not support Flash, but there is a built-in player to watch YouTube videos.
The salvation, however, lurks around. There are several truly capable browsers at Android Market and the most feature-rich today is Dolphin (although it won´t bring multitouch controls to the X10). Opera Mini 5 beta is a viable option as well, especially if you need to severely slash on traffic.
Traditionally, Sony Ericsson provides Wisepilot with all its handsets equipped with GPS and the Xperia X10 is not an exception to the rule. The program is really capable and features voice navigation, but comes with a 30 day trial, meaning you will have to buy it when it´s expired. All told, the application can come in quite handy for European customers. However, using it in the US is more or less pointless, since Google Maps offers free navigation. Google is expected to enable the free navigation feature for the entire world later on, which would probably mean the end of paid navigational programs like Wisepilot. Until this has happened, however, such applications are more than welcome.