Cyber-shot branded phones have been keeping us busy lately. Just as we gave you the 5-megapixel K850, the exciting new recruit Sony Ericsson K770 is on hand. Now, if K850 is the new star on the Cyber-shot team, the Sony Ericsson K770 is the right reinforcement in the midfield. New launches are not always about stunning upgrades in functionality. Design and ease of use are equally important, especially if trying to cater to different tastes and budgets. Slick and refined, the K770 easily stands out in the Cyber-shot crowd. The new phone is an attempt to build upon the design of Sony Ericsson T650. Sony Ericsson K770 packs the good old stuff - 3G, TFT display with QVGA resolution, stereo Bluetooth, FM radio, MP3/MPEG4 player, good 3-megapixel camera. All that with the neat elegance of a bar-shaped handset measuring 14.5 mm in thickness. How good it is in practice is namely our game, so bear with us as we explore the new Cyber-shot contender.
The Sony Ericsson K770 will be available in three color variations - Truffle Brown, Ultra Violet and the recently added Sandy Beige. The one we got to test is obviously the brown one. The K770 has a plastic body, but musters a more refined look. The handset measures 105 x 47 x 14.5 mm and weighs 95 g and is a pleasure to hold. Those are almost equal to the slim T650, which measures 12.5 mm, save the protruded camera lens.
The TFT display measures 1.9" in diagonal. Just so you get a dimensional perspective, the K810 has a 2" display, while the K850 sports a 2.2" one. Above the display you can see the speaker dead center. The video calls camera is located on its right, while the ambient light sensor is on the left. Most of the Sony Ericsson users out there would be happy to see that Sony Ericsson have ditched the infamous navigation joystick and have replaced it with a sleeker D-pad. The navigation pad of the K770 is even handier compared to our favoiurite D-pad of T650. The keypad has great styling and that's where the key difference lies. The keys are large and very comfortable for typing, wrong keypresses are virtually impossible.
|Design and ease of use are equally important, especially if trying to cater to different tastes and budgets. Slick and refined, the K770 easily stands out in the Cyber-shot crowd. The new phone is an attempt to build upon the design of Sony Ericsson T650.|
The left side of the K770 incorporates the usual Fast port used for attaching the charger and all peripherals. The Fast port is getting relocated on the side of increasingly more Sony Ericsson handsets. We suppose that it has something to do with its increased use for plugging stereo headset for listening to music. The bottom part of the K770 sports only a microphone and holes for attaching a neck or wrist strap. For that purpose you would have to remove the back cover first. The top part of the mobile features the On/Off key and a sliding release key for the back cover much like the one of T650. The On/Off key is really minute but that doesn't pose any usability problems.
The left-hand side of the K770 nests the dual volume key and the camera shutter key. They are all made to blend seamlessly into the handset design. The slight elevation plus the nice tactile feedback provide for a great user-friendliness of the controls.
The back side of the phone body is the camera face. At the bottom you can see the loudspeaker grill and the Sony Ericsson logo. The camera lens and the LED flash with mirror sector are placed at the top. K770 is the first Cyber-shot phone to offer such an elegant camera lens cover. Much like the K850, the camera and the LED flash here are below the back panel surface level. We hope, from now on, Cyber-shot phones keep coming with this elegant styling, and give up the less popular decisions like the K810 choppy back panel. Releasing the lens cover is marked by a blue gleam coming off a thin line of LEDs placed across the back cover. It indicates that the phone starts in camera mode. The On/Off camera key flashes briefly in blue, as well. The camera is quoted at a 3.2 megapixel resolution but, as with some other Sony Ericsson products, its effective megapixel count is calculated by multiplying X x Y pixels, or as it turns out precisely 3.15 megapixels (sorry for being such geeks, but that's just us).
When you take off the back cover by sliding the release key located on the handset's top side, several things may attract your attention. The M2 memory card slot is located on the left, not far from the Fast port. It allows hot-swapping memory cards as you don't need to remove the battery. That still is a bit dated design decision though, compared to the highly comfortable quick-release battery cover of K850, that shelters the card slot, the SIM card, and the battery itself. A sort of remedy is that the back panel release key has improved since T650 and is now easy to manage with one hand. The device works with Memory Stick Micro (M2) cards. The SIM card holder is located next to the memory card slot. SIM is removable with the battery off only; forgive us for stating the obvious.
The Sony Ericsson K770 is powered by a Sony Ericsson BST-38 Li-Po battery with a capacity of 930 mAh. Battery times are not yet officially published, but our test handset managed almost 3 days of fair usage in a 3G network - so expect a decent overall performance.