Sony Ericsson Z200 or a new kind of the
Step by step Sony Ericsson became a company positioned
to youth market. This group of users is the main consumers
of these products in Europe. Such models as Ò610,
are not taken into consideration. They are mostly used by
elder people, though young men form considerable part of this
user group. In future we’ll see that the company will announce
more and more handsets, targeted to young people. The company
stakes on youth in response of future sales and success on
the market. The strategy is obvious, whether it is right we’ll
see later. Sony Ericsson Z200 became one of the first products
among phones targeted to youth.
Model aimed to youth should be unusual; it needs a special
style, which will stand it out from the crowd. Functions play
the second role, although they are also very important. Firstly,
the company refused from the external aerial in a clamshell
phone. It was definitely right solution. When the phone will
be available on the market, it won’t have any rivals. Even
v300 has an external antenna.
Secondly, the company tried to do its best to make the
phone, which would be always in sight. The developers wanted
the consumers to show their handset to as many surrounding
people as possible. It was not very easy. At last the company
decided to put a large plastic lug at the top of the handset.
Leather strap is included in the standard kit and allows wearing
the phone on the hand and around a neck. Compared to other
accessories this phone looks different. It sticks to memory
and harmonically supplement the handset.
Speaking about accessories, we can’t miss interchangeable
covers – Style-Up. The standard delivery kit contains an extra
set of covers that it is not typical for the phones shipped
to Europe. It’s know-how of the company. You can easily change
the cover, just pulling it and then setting new panel till
you hear the flick. It will take about 10-15 seconds. These
covers are reliably fixed in the phone.
We could pay attention to quality of plastic (if to say
about blue color – Velvet Blue). It seems really velvet when
you touch the phone. This impression increases similarity
with Motorola v300.
Totally up to 4 different colors of the handset are available:
Velvet Blue, Cosmo Silver, Frosty White, Pulse Red.
The phone fits a palm of a hand; its dimensions are convenient
and you can wear it in the hand, on the palm and in the pocket.
The handset measures 96.4õ52õ25.4mm and weighs 98 grams. These
features are typical to the phones of this class.
Speaking about design it is necessary to add that the phone
is equipped with a round external display. Analogue clock
are seen in the standby mode on it. The user could change
the screen saver on digital clock. In this case he will see
signal level and battery status. An external display could
notify you about different events, for example, name of caller
is showed while incoming call. Dimensions of the display are
not large, phone number is not scrolled there.
Volume key and IrDa are placed on the left hand side of
the phone. Standard system connector is located on the bottom
of the handset. It is not differed from the other models of
the company. Handsfree and charger are connected to the same
The phone has a lithium-polymer battery. According to the
manufacturer, it could provide up to 200 hours of standby
time and up to 4.5 hours of talking time. SIM-holder is ordinary,
it functions without problems.
If you open the phone you will see that a keypad has orange
insertions. It improves exterior of the handset and allows
to reach better and even keypad backlighting. All keys are
made of plastic, they have middle size, well-spaced and very
convenient. The innovation is hidden in the navigation key.
It supports not only moving in 4 directions, but pressure
and bias moving. The key consists of two parts, integrated
one into another. You can use bias moving playing games; we
think that it is a good advantage of this model. Generally
navigation key is turned into a kind of joystick that is necessary
in various games.
The screen supports up to 4096 colors and has a resolution
of 128x128 pixels. It is STN-display, hence, it is blurred
under the Sun. Monochrome external display partly helps to
solve this problem. The picture looks nice inside, separate
pixels are almost not seen.
On the whole, comparing Z200 with other models, we can
conclude that it doesn’t stand out by its features, they are
the same or even worse. In the beginning of the year this
handset will loose to other new models in response to technical
specifications. The question is whether they could surpass
Z200 if to take into consideration all its features.
A menu structure is traditional. It was not changed. The
main menu is presented by a set of 9 icons. They are similar
to that ones, which are used in other models. There is a possibility
to create shortcut list to keep the mostly frequently used
functions. It is one extra list of fast access to menus.
Each menu item of the main menu and all submenus are numbered,
that allows to use quick shortcut number navigation.
Phonebook. This phonebook resembles one
in Sony Ericsson T68i, T610. The new one doesn’t have any
considerable changes. Several phone numbers, e-mail address
and other information can be added to one entry. You can select
necessary fields, which will be displayed while filling one
entry block. You can assign a personal ringing tone and picture
to each entry. Special melody will be played back and special
picture will be displayed while incoming call on the internal
Messages. You can choose a special tone
for incoming messages among a small list, which consists of
8, not various melodies. It’s not obvious why total list of
ringing tones is not available in this menu.
All capabilities concerning operations with messages are
standard. There are templates and fields to create own ones.
Both memories (SIM-card and phone) are used to keep messages.
Chat-function also can be used.
Call records. Up to 30 records are contained
in the total list (with date and time indication). There is
a small icon near each record, which indicates type of call
(missed, received, dialed phone number). Besides, you can
view if this number is available in SIM-card memory. It’s
a virtue of this model. A list of missed calls can be also
displayed separately, it contains up to 10 records. Cost and
time counters are also located here.
Multimedia. Pre-default pictures, which
are displayed as small icons, can be found in this menu. Apart
from pictures you can view your own sound files, including
those which you recorded using your voice memo function. An
access to voice memo is hidden in this menu too.
It is possible to select phone themes and download new
ones. QuickShare enables to add new links to resources, which
connected with melodies, pictures and phone themes. Later
you can just click a link and see many files to download.
There is a built-in musical composer in the phone. You
can edit 4 separate tracks, selecting existing instruments.
An original melody can be created with a help of this application.
A graphical editor is also integrated in this phone. You
can draw simple pictures there. As for me, this function is
not necessary, though it helps to kill time.
Organizer. There are several functions
in the organizer, first one is a calendar. It has three view
types: weekly view, monthly view and a view for today. In
the latter case you can see a list of all memos, in first
two cases only a time (weekly view) of events or date (monthly
view) are indicated. One can quickly go to desired date (year,
month, day). The calendar, as well as the schedule can be
filled traditionally. For example, you can select one of the
six events type, indicate the place, duration and set a reminder
(either beforehand or in time). Unfortunately, in my sample,
I couldn’t find such feature as recurrent events. Only another
time/date can be set for some of the events in the edit menu.
Reminders are worked even if you point it in the settings.
A peculiarity of the phone is that profile is automatically
changed when the event takes place, then it is changed back
after the event. It is similar to Time Profile in the Nokia’s
Notes. One can write short text notes in the phone. A first
word from the note is displayed in the total lost. It’s not
very convenient. Because you should begin your note with a
special (main) word to remember the text after period of time.
Alarm clocks. There are both once and recurrent alarm-clocks
in the phone. The latter one can alert in special days of
the week. Both alarm-clocks operate when the phone is switched
Besides the phone has a standard countdown timer and stopwatch,
which can keep intermediate results. The phone has codes reminder
and improved more convenient version of calculator.
WAP. Browser has a special menu item.
Z200 has wap-browser in 1.2.1 version. It is possible to download
new wallpapers, themes, melodies to the phone. A good set
is available on the original site of the manufacturer. You
can easily fill in the memory during 1-2 hours. Animated GIF
files are not showed by the browser, it’s a shortcoming
of the phone.
Entertainment. There are two menu items
in this submenu: games and applications. The phone has several
pre-installed games: AlienScum, HoneyCave2, Minigolf.
The phone supports Mophun. So, there are no problems with
downloading new games. Today a list of available games is
really impressive, it includes more than 600 titles.
We described only the most general functions of the phone
in this preview. In fact, Z200 is a cutting copy of its predecessor
– Z600. The advantage of the model is that it supports 40-tones
polyphony; it differs it from the other models from Sony Ericsson.
The reason is that Z200 is an Odm-model produced in Taiwan
Preliminary conclusion is the following: of the model will
be launched in November and costs aboyt 230-250 USD, it will
be very demanded on the market. Note that it is one of the
first clamshells with internal aerial and interchangeable
covers. In response to specifications, launching date and
price, the main rival will be Motorola v300. Elder brother
Z600 will compete with Motorola v600. So, the process is symmetric.
Z200 is aimed to the same place as T300 was positioned
to. At that time the company made a mistake, offering very
simple, not attractive design to young users. It was corrected
in Z200. In response to desing the phone seems really nice.
Set of functions is also rather wide. So, we can assume that
it will be sold comparable to T310. Keep in mind that till
recently it was considered that clamshells were only fashion
phones. Samsung is the leader in this field. Quality of the
screen in z200 is worse than the products from Korean manufacturer
have. It means that the company should to attract new users
who did not use clamshell before or are not anxious about
number of colors displayed on the screen.
Well, leaving all explanations, we can say that the phone
produces a pleasant impression, it is friendly. It’s not bad
offer for this segment. Let’s see how the company will promote
this product on the market with a help of advertising and
marketing campaigns. Full review of this phone will be published
in the end of this month.