Sony Ericsson S700 review: Welcome to Japan

Marek Lutonský, 26 October 2004. Read the original review at
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A real multimedia phone

Because Sony Ericsson S700 can work with a memory card, it can be successfully used also as an MP3 player. Unfortunately I don't know what the sound in the headphones is but the loudspeaker is fine. The sound is clear, just by higher volume the pitches are exceeding over the basses and the mids. You can adjust that with an equalizer.

You can listen to MP3 files even when the phone is in closed position. Using the sliding control button you can quickly lock the keys and let it go. When you have a call, playing is temporary paused and after the ending the call it starts again. From the advanced functions there is only random play available.

Playing sound • equalizer • playing possibilities

Due to the missing headphones, which are also working as an antenna, I couldn't try the radio, but I don't expect that it's working in a different way from the K700 model.

Java, only Java

In the Entertainment section we can find mostly games. There are three games and Sony Ericsson is trying to show us the possibilities of the supported 3D technology. We can throw darts to a dartboard, ride a snowboard on the ramp or play the still unbeated Super Real Tennis. Perhaps you wouldn't believe that these are games for a mobile phone.

Games in the phone 

Sony Ericsson S700 left Mophun and bet on standard Java. As usually I tried how the phone stands the graphics speed jBenchmark test. And here are the results. You can compare them with a complete result list on

  • jBenchmark 1.0: 1446 points
  • jBenchmark 2.0: 90 points

Applications: Units convertor and World time

The WAP browser holds a lot of information, again thanks to the large display. I appreciate that it remembers entered addresses so it's not necessary to enter an address every time again. Besides WAP pages it can also display simple web pages (HTML).

EDGE is missing, still interested?

Sony Ericsson S700 gets connected to a PC via cable, infraport or Bluetooth. GPRS class 10 ensures quite fast connection to mobile Internet. But considering the fact that some operators are running EDGE in their networks and others will, the absence of this technology can be a problem for plenty of users. Sony Ericsson S700 is losing a big part of its appeal for those who are interested in fast data transfer. They can still use HSCSD but today this is almost a dead technology.

Let's have a look at the American model Sony Ericsson S710a. It looks the same as the European S700 but with EDGE available. The question is what's hidden inside - but I wouldn't say that it's just a software modification.

The S700 Bluetooth supports perhaps all possible profiles. I'll make a note at one feature, that is already available in the K700 but I couldn't try it due to an older version of the drivers. It's about remote PC control from the mobile. You simply choose an appropriate item and then you can control the mouse cursor with the mobile phone, run programs, and switch between windows… It's cool and useful for presentations.

Connection menu• Bluetooth possibilities

Synchronization makes possible to get data from a PC (for example Microsoft Outlook) to the phone. You'll get a Synchronization pack on a CD probably, but it's also possible to download it free from the Sony Ericsson's web page.

Who is Sony Ericsson S700 for?

Sony Ericsson S700 is undoubtedly a top-class mobile. It looks like it has just arrived from Japan; the concept of the two sides is almost perfect. The megapixel camera is excellent, the best available in a phone. We haven't probably seen a better display in a mobile phone yet; I can't say anything bad about the functions composition.

There are also some negative points. The phone is very big and heavy, which perhaps can be accepted. A major disadvantage is the address book: low capacity and searching by the first character (this can be solved by the new firmware). That might be a big problem for users who are used to a comfortable work with the address book in other phones. Further disadvantage is the lack of fast mobile data transfer - EDGE, which is not supported by S700.

Furthermore we can't forget the price. Sony Ericsson claimed from the beginning that it's going to be very expensive and that's true. By its price S700 will compete with the new Sony Ericsson P910 smartphone. I see an outright winner of this duel; the open operating system with related possibilities is beating everything. Sony Ericsson S700 is a typical phone for the fiery technical fans. They're not looking at the price; the most important thing is the extraordinary top-class phone loaded with the latest technologies. S700 perfectly meets these requirements. Welcome in Japan.

Pros and Cons

+ outstanding display
+ high-quality camera, the best so far
+ original design and construction

- low capacity of the address book
- size and weight
- embedded keys

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