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Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc review

Can Android 2.3 and a super-slim new body salvage Sony Ericsson's Android ambitions?

Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc review: Messaging

Standalone SMS messaging on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc has been skinned a little, with texts appearing in threaded format in a simple text window. You're able to attach images and videos, or even record them direct from the SMS window prompt. It's a stylish little tool that glamorises text messaging like never before.

Sony ericsson xperia arc review

The Xperia Arc's keyboard is simple and a bit of a disappointment. There's no Swype or alternative on here either, so Sony Ericsson's take on the standard Android keyboard is all you get.

There are no alternate characters on the keys, so for numbers and special characters your only option is to switch screens. Still, no one complains about that on iPhone 4, so it's clearly not a deal breaker for most people.

Sony ericsson xperia arc review

The phone attempts to predict your words as you type, but it's a patchy experience. We found we'd typed almost the entire word before it popped up, rendering the feature virtually useless. Fans of proper grammar will also be frustrated by its poor handling of apostrophes, especially as the apostrophe itself is hidden away on the special characters screen.

Text editing is made easier in Android 2.3 thanks to a little on-screen tab that attaches itself to the bottom of the cursor when you touch an area of text you've typed. Dragging the tab is much easier than trying to precisely touch the specific area you need to edit, making correcting errors less of a chore.

Sony ericsson xperia arc review

Email is handled by the standard Android client, which, as ever, does a great job of setting your accounts up for you once you've supplied a username and password, also fully supporting Exchange accounts. You're able to view your accounts separately, or as part of a unified inbox – something a lot of phones neglect to do, yet so many users love the feature.

Sony ericsson xperia arc review

Sony Ericsson has included a very nice scrollable preview pane, which can be turned on or off – or only used when the phone's in landscape mode to give you a little more room. As with most things to do with the Xperia Arc, it's a sleek, user-friendly experience.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory1 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
SAR Value0.66 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyXPERIA
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Rear Camera Resolution8.1 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourMidnight Blue
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSony Mobile
Battery Talk Time6.90 Hour
Product ModelArc
Screen Size10.7 cm (4.2")
Screen Resolution480 x 854
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)117 g
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR, REACH, RoHS, WEEE
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Height125 mm
Width63 mm
Depth8.7 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time430 Hour
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product NameXPERIA Arc Smartphone
Processor Speed1 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Product LineXPERIA
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeDigital Compass, Accelerometer, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number1246-9197
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing Information

Your life in vivid colours. Videos and stills. Show it all off on the sharp, crisp and clear 4,2' multi-touch Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine. Share, like and comment with Facebook inside Xperia. The Xperia arc Android touch phone - designed to be daring.

Android touch phone with super-screen

View pics and video in vivid colours with your Android touch phone. Crisp and clear on the 4.2" Reality display with Sony Mobile BRAVIA Engine.

The sleek, super-slim Xperia arc

Start with premium materials. Stir in a beautiful curve. Squeeze down to 8.7 mm. And there it is, a perfect palm fit: the slim, lightweight and strong Xperia arc.

Limited Warranty2 Year