The new 910i is a smart looking slide phone that like all Sony Ericsson’s models has evolved ever so slightly from previous models.
The most striking feature its large and clear screen. It takes up a good chunk of the phone’s real estate, and large fonts are used to make text easy to read instead of cramming lots of information onto the screen at any given moment. It’s also a useful for website navigation and as a viewfinder for the camera.
The menu is a tad laggy thanks in part to the animations it uses, but the clean layout makes up for this. Sony Ericsson has always been known for its menu layout, but recently it has been getting cluttered with unnecessary functions, such as the camera which can already be accessed via a dedicated hardware key.
The excellent walkman music playback software is included, and can be accessed through a button on the top of the phone as well as through a shortcut in the main menu. It’s also nested within a media soft key on the home screen. The included handsfree kit splits at the microphone end into a pair of wired rubber flanged headphones through a 3.5mm connector.
The phone senses its orientation, and will automatically rotate the screen in some instances, such as Walkman and camera modes. This has the potential to open up Wii-style gaming on the move; but for the time being is limited to functions like the fiddly shake control, which will select a random track instead of moving linearly through the playlist.
Images from the 2 megapixel camera are acceptable, and can be accessed through two hotkeys at either side of the phone’s earpiece. One navigation option presents a thumbnail view and the other previews the last image taken.
M2 memory sticks can be loaded into the side of the phone. It supports Bluetooth and comes with an adapter cable for USB connection. When only a quarter charged, we were able to use the phone for two days. We will update this article when we have run exhaustive battery tests, however Sony Ericsson claims nine hours of talk time and 350 hours of standby time on a single charge. Hopefully, Nokia is paying attention to those performance figures.
Until then, the only drawbacks are the presence of too many duplicates in the menu system and the keypad, which despite being quite big doesn’t provide enough tactile feedback for our liking.