Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1 review: A new experience

GSMArena team, 23 December 2008.
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Connectivity

True to is PocketPC nature, the XPERIA X1 offers excellent connectivity options - HSDPA 7.2Mpbs, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP + EDR are all on board. The handset features quad-band GSM and tri-band HSDPA support, as well as USB 2.0.

You can opt for connecting the USB cable in ActiveSync or mass-storage modes. There isn't however a convenient connection type prompt upon every connection like we saw on the HTC Touch Pro. Instead you have to find the setting in the settings menu and do that again every time you need to change the connection mode.

Last but not least, the memory card slot often proves quite comfortable for quickly transferring large amounts of data. Unfortunately, the memory card slot is under the battery cover so getting access to it is not a breeze.

Web browser

The Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 is equipped with the latest version of the Opera browser, which makes the Internet Explorer Mobile redundant. The Opera 9.5 browser is extensively touch-optimized and seems heavily inspired by the iPhone Safari browser.

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GSMArena.com on Sony Ericsson X1 (Opera 9.5)

The WVGA display snatches a point again in the web browsing department. When the browser loads the full website preview, the minute text still remains recognizable.

While it fails to deliver the same level of usability as the Safari browser, the Opera 9.5 makes up for it by throwing in a few features that totally lack on the iPhone, such as text copy/paste and a download manager. There is also limited Flash support.

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Overlayed controls

And a few words about the Opera 9.5 interface. By default web pages are opened fullscreen free of any overlaying controls. A tap on the bottom right corner however brings up the available controls.

First, you've got the address bar at the very top. At the bottom of the screen there is a row of icons that can take you back, take you to bookmarks, bring up the tab switcher, the home page or the browser settings.

Unfortunately, you cannot enjoy YouTube videos (or any other flash video) straight from the web browser, since it lacks Flash Lite 3 support. There are fixes of course, but they involve installing third-party solutions (you can check the tweaks and modding section of this review).

Organizing is what Windows likes to do

Windows Mobile offers several time-management features and all of them are a breeze to synchronize with MS Outlook. As of Windows Mobile 6.0, the Calendar allows browsing the events to come. It offers daily, weekly and monthly view. You can have the week start on either Monday or Sunday. Weekends can be hidden from the Calendar if you use it for business strictly.

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The Windows Mobile Calendar

The To-Do list allows you to add tasks and assign them priority. The Notes also come in handy, as you can either type or directly write the text down on the screen. The Voice recorder and Calculator go without saying.

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To-Do list • The Notes app allows handwriting too, as well as QWERTY input • the aging calculator

The Alarm clock has three alarm slots. Each Alarm can have its own repeat pattern. Unfortunately, due to the little customization options in the default Alarms application, we suggest you check out some free third-party alternatives.

A mobile office

Among the other WM core applications is the Office Mobile package featuring support for viewing and editing Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. With the latest version of the Office Mobile, you also get the OneNote application.

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Office Mobile allows viewing and editing Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote files

Once again, the WVGA display of the X1 proves superior in fitting documents contents.

Thanks to the Adobe Reader LE, there is also support for viewing PDF documents. We are pleased with the performance of the X1 in this area, as opening and handling PDF documents is usually rather slow on handhelds.

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Opening PDF documents with Adobe Reader LE

Another application is the rather handy Search software, capable of searching throughout the whole file system and applications. You can set filters, so that the application searches only in the places you need.

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The system-wide Search application

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