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SonyEricsson Adds PTT, EDGE To Phones

3/10/2004 09:19:00 AM Eastern

New York - Five new GSM wireless phones unveiled here by Sony Ericsson include the company’s first two push-to-talk (PTT) phones, its first EDGE-equipped phone, and its first two U.S.-market camera phones that look like cameras.

The company also unveiled its first GSM-network megapixel cameraphone, and although the S700 will launch globally in the fourth quarter, Sony Ericsson declined to say if it would be marketed to U.S. carriers. The S700 would also be the company’s first U.S. phone that swivels opens like a switchblade knife.

All of the cameraphones are the company’s first U.S. cameraphones with built-in photo light, which uses low-power LEDs to light up a scene like a videocamera light.

The K700 and T637 are VGA cameraphones with a so-called "dual-front" design. One side looks like a phone, and the other side looks like a camera. Consumers can hold them in a horizontal position like a camera to take a picture.

The K700, due in the second quarter, is a 900/1800/1900MHz GSM/GPRS model with 4x digital zoom, video-clip capture, built-in FM radio, MP3 player, 65K color screen, Bluetooth, IR, downloadable Java applications, and 32MB internal memory to store images and data. The candy bar-style mode weighs 2.9 ounces and delivers up to seven hours of talk time or up to 360 hours (15 days) of standby time. A 3D graphics engine from Hi Corp. delivers faster game play than other 3D engines, the company contended. GPRS download speeds are up to 57.5kbps, and upload speeds range up to 28.8kbps.

The dual-front T637 cameraphone is one of the company’s two PTT phones, which like other GSM PTT phones are compliant with the PTT standard that will be finalized by the Open Mobile Alliance. The 850/1800/1900MHz model, due in the second quarter, takes VGA pictures, features 65K-color screen and plays downloaded Java applications. It supports a variety of instant-messaging services, weighs 3.26 ounces and delivers up to nine hours of talk time or up to 300 hours of standby. Other features include Bluetooth, IR and GPRS.

The swiveling megapixel phone is the S700, due in the fourth quarter. The 1.3-megapixel model can be held horizontally when taking a picture. When it swivels open to reveal a dialing keypad and small LCD screen, it can be held vertically for use like a traditional cellular phone. Calls can also be placed when the phone is closed. Four buttons, a five-way navigation key and a large 2.3-inch 262K color TFT screen on the phone’s front face make it possible for users to select and autodial phone-book entries, browse the web, view messages and navigate the phone menu.

Other S700 features include 8x zoom, video-clip capture, removable Memory Stick Duo memory card, MP3 player, Java-app download capability, Bluetooth, IR and Hi Corp. 3D graphics engine. Opening the camera shutter puts the phone in camera mode and turns the LCD screen into a viewfinder. It weighs 4.83 ounces and delivers up to seven hours of talk time or up to 300 hours of standby time. GPRS download speeds are up to 57.5kbps, and upload speeds range up to 28.8kbps.

The company’s first EDGE-equipped phone, the clamshell Z500, is also a PTT phone. The 850/1800/1900MHz model features VGA camera, Wireless Village-standard wireless instant messaging, organizer functions, downloadable Java applications, 65K color screen, and external color display that serves as a viewfinder, display picture caller ID and display text messages. When it ships in the third quarter, it will be the fastest EDGE phone available, downloading data at speeds up to 240kbps, the company contended. At 3.88 ounces, it delivers up to 10 hours of talk time or up to 264 hours of standby time. It lacks Bluetooth.

The fifth phone, the 850/1900MHz GSM/GPRS T237, accepts the company’s CommuniCam VGA camera attachment. The phone features 4K color screen, speakerphone, downloadable Java apps, Wireless Village instant messaging, voice-activated dialing, and phonebook and calendar synchronization with a PC. Due in the second quarter, it weighs 2.79 ounces and delivers up to 12 hours of talk time or up to 300 hours of standby time.

The company also unveiled two new EDGE PC Cards, both tri-band models. One is destined for sales in overseas markets. The 850/1800/1900MHz model, which can be used in U.S. and foreign networks, is due in the U.S in the second quarter. The current model is an 850/1900MHz model that operates only on U.S. networks.

In accessories, Sony Ericsson unveiled a Bluetooth TV attachment that displays digital pictures, video clips and Powerpoint slides stored on a Bluetooth-equipped cellphone. It plugs into the TV’s RCA inputs and is expected to retail for $100 to $150.

The resolution of the video captured by the video-capture phones is 176 pixels by 144 pixels.

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