We’ve been eyeing up the official images of the Sony Ericsson M600i for months, and now we’ve got the real thing to test.
It is, if you remember, soon to get a sister in the form of the Walkman-branded W950i, with its 4GB of storage. This, however, is the business-orientated version. It comes in black or white with blue highlights, and has a solid build quality that belies its 112g weight. It has no camera.
The unique keyboard is designed for taking full advantage of push email and 3G internet. Each key has two letters, depending on what side of the key you press.
Fortunately, the keys have a positive action so this is easier than it sounds. That said, perhaps it is just our alcohol-addled brains but we couldn’t relax into a decent Qwerty typing speed. Only occasionally did we manage a flow of letters speedy enough to threaten a well-used predictive text system (which, of course, the W950i will have when it arrives). We recommend trying the M600i out before you buy if you plan to write essays.
Further compounding the amount of concentration required to type is the M600i’s plethora of input types. As well as the keyboard, it has a touch screen and, on the left hand side, a clicky jog wheel and ‘back’ button. Surely one too many? The OS doesn’t help matters. It’s the same Symbian/UIQ mix as seen on the P990 – pleasantly styled, but a little rough and clunky.
When the business day is over, the M600i makes a decent multimedia device. It has a large, bright 2.6-inch screen with QVGA resolution, 30fps video playback and A2DP stereo Bluetooth support. A bundled golf game shows off the M600i’s 3D gaming abilities too.
Shame it doesn’t have the W950i’s 4GB storage; it uses Sony M2 memory cards which come in at about £36 per gigabyte.
So, the M600i. It works, but not in a way that’ll have us foaming at the mouth and calling up the trophy-making man. We’d be inclined to wait for the W950i.
Sony Ericsson M600i
Price: £free with contract, £310 without
On sale: Now
Contact: Sony Ericsson