Sony Ericsson G705 has an Access NetFront browser v3.4 featuring the extended home screen, also available in C905 and T700, which we recently reviewed. Plenty of shortcuts arranged in a tree structure are listed on the homescreen, right under a search and an address bar. They grant access to free content, such as clips, tracks and games on the Sony Ericsson site, including a step-by-step guide for setting up email accounts or internet connections. The appearance of the home screen changes in varying fresh colors each time you start the browser too.
A Generation Web handset, Sony Ericsson G705 features web shortcuts on the alphanumeric keypad, which we already saw in action in the K660. Backlit in purple as soon as you launch the browser, they work in both portrait and landscape mode and let you control text input, bookmarks, homepage and zoom. These functions are fixed and cannot be turned off.
Elaborate web pages are rendered well and there are lots of configurable settings too. The dedicated full screen mode is replaced by the auto-rotate feature, which actually opens it in full-screen landscape mode. View modes include Text only, Pan and Zoom, and Zoom page. The Panning/scrolling speed is up to standard.
The Sony Ericsson G705 web browser offers a virtual mouse pointer, which is a real pleasure to work with. Another interesting and practical feature is the "Find on page" option. It searches the loaded web page and the first match is immediately listed as soon as you type a letter.
The connectivity options of G705 are full service. Quad-band GSM/HSCSD/GPRS/EDGE and tri-band 3G are all on board, so there is virtually no spot on Earth (if GSM applies) where you will be unable to connect. In addition, you've got the fastest data transfers around, provided that a HSDPA-enabled network is available.
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Besides the network-based connectivity, Sony Ericsson G705 offers the usual Bluetooth v2.0 and USB options. There is also support for the A2DP profile allowing listening to music on a stereo Bluetooth headset.
The other major connectivity feature is the built-in Wi-Fi with DLNA support. GPS with A-GPS function completes the tally. Last, but not least, there is also the M2 card slot which might just turn out to be one of the quickest means of transferring data on some occasions.
The G705 supports local and remote synchronization of contacts and calendar events. The local one is with Outlook and a PC, while the remote synchronization works with remote servers.
USB connectivity has four modes - one for file transfers (Mass Storage) and one for USB Internet - to put it simply, the second one is for using the phone as a modem.
The third one is media transfer, which directly connects to the Windows media player, and gives full access to tracks placed on your phone, synchronization, and play or sorting in playlists. The last one is for direct printing of images.
The G705 is notable for completing the connectivity options with Wi-Fi. Unfortunately, as the official information goes, the maximum transfer rate via the Wi-Fi connection goes only up to 5 Mb/s (yes, that's megabits not megabytes).
Wi-Fi connectivity is integrated rather well in the user interface and quite user-friendly. Once you turn it on, you get a list of the available wireless hot spots. Connecting is a matter of single click. It is also available via "My shortcuts", just in case you don't want to look for it in the menus.
The web browser and all other data traffic is re-routed through the Wi-Fi connection by default, when you are connected. If Wi-Fi connection should fail, the browser automatically starts to use GPRS or higher speed network connection, if available.
Of course you won't have to guess whether Wi-Fi is engaged or not, as it has an icon on the top status bar.
Auto connect, Wi-Fi networks priority, and assigning a favorite network are among the nice and very practical features in the Wi-Fi interface.
Additional settings allow you to search networks by their SSID, check your connection status or MAC address (you cannot change that).
The Sony Ericsson G705 offers a wide range of time-management features. There is an Organizer icon in the main menu and it contains several applications: File manager, Alarms, Video call, Calendar, Tasks, Notes, Synchronization, Timer, Stopwatch, Light, Calculator, and Code memo.
The Calendar offers monthly and weekly views. When you add a birth date in the phonebook, the phone prompts adding it to the calendar. Tasks can be two types: simple Tasks and Phone calls. Notes are written similar to messages; the T9 dictionary can be used here as well.
Alarms are part of the main menu. There are five alarm slots available. Each one offers a lot of options - you can choose to repeat the alarm on chosen days of the week or everyday. Text and a picture can be added to the alarm. Furthermore, the alarm behavior can be defined in case the time it is due to go off comes while the phone is in silent mode.
The Voice recorder has no limit to recording length, making the free memory available the only restriction. The Calculator is the regular Sony Ericsson one. The stopwatch and countdown timer are also the well known basic applications.
The LED light on the back of the phone can also be used as a torch, thanks to the Light application. The LEDs can be on continually or for a period of one minute only. They can also blink out an SOS signal.
Some other applications include MusicDJ and VideoDJ. VideoDJ is for making your own video clips by mixing already existing ones with still pictures, text and a variety of effects or for making basic cuts using special transitions and adding background music. MusicDJ is a very simple application for creating custom polyphonic melodies.
As far as the additional applications are concerned, the Sony Ericsson G705 comes with several applications preinstalled: AccuWeather.com, Comeks Strips, Standby World 3D, Walk Mate, Wayfinder 7 and the YouTube client.
The AccuWeather app gives you up-to-date weather information for locations of interest to you. It provides detailed information about the current weather conditions in the selected region, as well as a 3-day forecast. You should bear in mind that it requires an internet connection and data charges may apply.
Comeks Strips is an application that lets you add speech bubbles and various comic-style add-ons to your camera photos. The comics you make can be then saved or sent via MMS. Making comics is fun and easy following the step-by-step wizard.
The Standby World 3D is a nice application with readings for up to three different time zones around the world. The background changes as day turns into night in the selected locations.
The Walk Mate is a simple step counter application, which works in background mode based on the built-in accelerometer.
Last but not least is the YouTube client. It gives you full access to clips and uploading, bookmarking favorites and so on. A major drawback is that you cannot use Wi-Fi to browse the YouTube content!