Having already made waves with their music-loving Walkman phones and camera-totting Cybershot range, Sony Ericsson (SE) is now targeting online addicts.
At $399, the K660i is a mid-priced candy-bar handset with equally middle of the road features, except for the fact it offers tantalising download speeds where HSDPA (3.5G) is available.
Pandering further to web wanderers, a row of four keys on the keypad convert to illuminated shortcuts when using the phone horizontally with the web 2.0 friendly NetFront browser fired up. These keys provide quick access to bookmarks, an online search, SE’s own dedicated web portal and a zoom function for navigating larger web pages.
Other onboard web applications include Google Maps, RSS Widgets, plus we threw on a Gmail reader and Opera Mini which is an excellent mini web browser.
The other possible use for a HSDPA handset of course is hooking it up to a notebook as a wireless broadband modem. This requires the usual software drivers installed, and works well, though it’s easier to rack up the data costs this way if you’re not careful.
The display is on par with other handsets in this price range, measuring 2” diagonally with 240 x 320 resolution. While it’s a little small, the images are still crisp even viewing web sites while holding the handset at arms length.
There’s a camera on the front, above the display for video calls, with a two-megapixel camera on the back for better quality shots, though no sign of a flash or auto-focus and only a digital zoom option.
While not a key feature, the K660i is also a capable music player, and there’s an M2 memory slot for up to 4GB of media storage. The speaker offers ample volume, but due to SE’s custom audio jack, only the supplied earbuds fit.
The design and features suggest to us the K660i is aimed at the back row of the school bus, though with its attractive price and high speed data capabilities we expect to see it falling into older hands as well.