Sony Ericsson XPERIA Pro Review
Although smartphones equipped with touch screen displays are hugely accepted these days, there are many users who still prefer smartphones equipped with physical keyboards. Realizing this, Sony Ericsson has come out with Xperia Pro. The cell phone was announced at MWC in February 2011, but it was late to hit the stores. Xperia Pro is one of those rare phones which is shipped with Android Gingerbread on board along with a physical QWERTY keyboard. But is it able to satisfy the expectations of customers? Check out our Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro review to know what the phone has to offer you.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Looks And Design
Xperia Pro is made entirely out of plastic and at dimensions standing at 120×57x13.7mm, the size of the phone is very much the same as that of Xperia Neo. Sony Ericsson must be given credit that they have been able to squeeze a QWERTY keyboard without increasing the thickness of the phone. Xperia Pro is a compact device and looks pretty slim because of the inward rear curve. It weighs 142 grams which makes it heavier than Samsung Galaxy S2 (116 grams) and lighter than HTC Desire Z (180 grams).
Design of Xperia Pro is a mixture of Xperia Neo and Xperia Arc. When you look at Neo and Pro from the front it is very difficult to distinguish between both the phones. The plastics used in construction of the phone are highly glossy which subjects the phone to fingerprints and the smudges are quite hard to clean.
On the left side, you get the 3.5mm audio jack along with a tiny lock/power key. On the top right you get the thin volume rocker button along with a microHDMI port. There is a two-step shutter key on the other end. On the top of the phone you have a centrally placed microUSB cable. The phone is well built, reasonably sized and is very comfortable to carry around.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Display
The front of the phone is dominated by a 3.7 inches 16M LCD screen which displays pictures of resolution measuring 854×480 pixels. The display of Xperia Pro is similar to that of Xperia Arc and Neo equipped with Sony Bravia Mobile engine. The high-quality LED backlit LCD gives pleasing colors and sunlight legibility is also good. Though the display does not match the standards of the super AMOLE plus capacitive touch screen of Samsung Galaxy S2, yet it performed quite well and is one of the better LCD’s which we have seen from Sony Ericsson smartphones. The image quality and the outdoor performance have been improved to a great extent. The screen is made out of scratch resistant glass which protects the glass from scratches. Our only complaint with the display is its poor viewing angles. When it is looked at an angle, then the colors get quickly washed out and the contrast is lost in no time.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Features
Xperia Pro runs on Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS and there are plans to upgrade it. Let us check out some of the other features of this phone:
Since Xperia Pro Android has Android 2.3.4 pre-installed in it, it brings some new features with it. The 2.3.4 brings the screen shot functionality, better Facebook integration and many more. There are five pane home screens which can be configured according to the need of the user. There are some custom made Sony Ericsson widgets which includes Timescape widget, Mediascape like widget. One can easily create folder and the lock screen is quite standard. The 1GHz Snapdragon S2 processor makes the Timescape interface runs healthy and you get 1GB of ROM for installing apps.
Some of the built-in applications which you will find in Xperia Pro are:
- Google Maps
- Google Latitude
- OfficeSuite Pro
- Live Ware
Users can also download apps of their choice from the Android market.
The presence of the physical QWERTY keypad is another nice feature of Xperia Pro. Users get access to the four-row QWERTY keyboard by sliding Xperia Pro. There is also a setting which allows you to enable smart keyboard which gives you access to several relevant functions. The layout of the keyboard is similar to that of Mini pro and the keys are quite well spaced out which provides a nice grip on them. The keys are quite prominent with pleasant matte finish. When we pressed them, the feedback is quite good. The keyboard is beautifully lit which helps you to type in dim light.
Phonebook and Messaging
Xperia Pro has a nice phonebook which allows you to store comprehensive information about your contacts. You can sort the contact list either by the first or the last name. The phonebook also allows you to sync multiple accounts which include Exchange and Facebook. The phone handles messaging quite well and the SMS/MMS communication is well organized into threads. The phone allows one to add multimedia, thus converting an SMS into a MMS.
The phone is available in three colors – Black, Red and Silver.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Camera Quality
Xperia Pro is equipped with an 8MP camera along with a single LED light. The phone uses a backlit Exmor R sensor which advances the performance of the camera in dim light. The camera allows you to capture photographs in five capture modes. The camera also sports features such as video calling, geo-tagging and smile detection. The image quality is quite good and the noise levels are kept low. The camera captures enough fine details and the photos have good contrast. There are a rich set of scene modes offered by the camera interface.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Video Quality
Xperia Pro is competent of recording 720p videos at 30 fps and it does a nice job. The settings of the camcoder have similar settings to that still camera. The videos are stored in MP4 format and the amounts of details are very good. However, we observed that in dim light, the amount of details dropped and the videos were mostly noise free.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Connectivity
The phone has a nice set of connectivity options. You get a quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE and tri-band HSPA. It also offers Wi-Fi b/g/n and Bluetooth 2.1 and the microUSB 2.0 port handles wired data transfer and charging. There is a typical 3.5mm audio jack and a micro HDMI port which fulfills the connectivity tally. The web browsing is quite good and it supports zooming, panning. The web browser has full flash 11 support and Youtube videos played quite well.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Multimedia
The music player of Xperia Pro is very pretty and is the same app which you will find in Xperia ray and Xperia arc S. There is a rich selection of equalizer presets. The phone is also equipped with an FM radio whose interface is simple and neat. The radio scans the area automatically and you also get the track ID service which works within the radio application.
The sound quality of Xperia Pro is pretty cool and in our audio output test, it performed quite well. The amplitude was quite good and the performance was further boosted when connected to an external amplifier.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Accessories
Some of the accessories which you will find with Xperia Pro are
- Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro
- Wall Charger
- 8GB Micro SD card
- User Manual
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Battery Life
The phone is equipped with a standard Li-Po 1500mAH battery which gives a talk time of around 6 hours when the phone is operated on 2G.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro Price
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro price in India is approximately Rs 21,000 while price of the phone in USA is approximately $ 170.
Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro is a great Android phone which offers great features along with a nice physical keypad. The camera, video, display are good and if you love physical QWERTY keypads then, you can surly bet upon Xperia Pro.