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k700 placiau

Standard kit:

Stereo headset
Sony Ericsson made a quite revolution after presenting the model T610 about a year ago, during this term the phone became bestseller around the world. It is still very popular, that’s why the manufacturer does not have enough power to satisfy the hunger.

With the year taken as interval Sony Ericsson presented new model – K700, which is targeted for youth, it is supposed to become same thing, as T610 was during its time. We’d like to point out that this phone is not successor to T610/T630 series, unlike the obvious function and feature similarity. From the marketing point of view this model is targeted for different segment, the design for youth can be taken as proof for this statement. The design however remains strict and stylish. The technical specifications are actually cut-off version of 3G phone - Z1010, the phone’s software speaks out for itself. More than that, existing firmware versions contain curious menu item – videocall, although in reality K700 has only one camera inside. In future other models from K-series will be released, they will differ with the functionality. But since K700 is the first phone from this line-up it plays important role, especially considering the fact that there are not any similar products from other manufacturers. The only competitor in this segment is Siemens CX65, but in reality it loses clearly comparing to K700, in terms of price and functionality.

The phone’s design is strict, two color solutions will be available - Optic Silver, Blue Tinted Silver. In both cases bigger part of the case is made in one color, only different is edging. In K700 designers decided to keep shape of other models, and introduced new elements as well. What has remained as legacy – its size: 99x46.5x19.5 mm. If you compare this model with Ò610/Ò630 you will notice that it’s 3mm lower and at the same time some mm wider. This does not affect convenience in terms of using though, the phone fits nicely into ones palm. The weight is 93 grams, this can be compared with previous models.

The keyboard is made of semi-transparent plastic, partly MATOVIJ, its color is white. The shape and key placement are similar to T630, designers were trying to achieve this effect on purpose. The keyboard’s backlight is white, symbols are clearly seen in all conditions. The phone’s ergonomics deserves a lot of various awards, it is very convenient and no problems are encountered. The key’s size and convenience affects the overall impression from the phone, it is very convenient.

Same thing can be said about the joystick, which is tight enough, the button is rather big. The joystick reacts to the presses, although accidental key press do not occur rapidly, this is a great advantage. Comparing to T610 the joystick’s size increased, that’s why a lot of people will find it easy to use.

A circle which is performed in another color is element of appearance, it is formed around the keyboard, it is clearly seen in darkness. This circle is rather symmetric to circle around the camera, which is located on the back side of the phone. At first it seems to be a simple solution, but in reality we get an attractive design element.

The screen can be considered as the most interesting part of new model. It is made on TFT-technology and can display up to 65000 colors. The screen has resolution of 176x220 pixels, which allows displaying up to 7 text lines and up to 3 text lines reserved for service needs. The screen’s quality is superb, the picture looks lively and sharp. If you compare the screen with Sony Ericsson Z600, T630 it is clear that K700’s is a lot better. This parameter is actually better than all models from Sony Ericsson, and a lot better than Nokia and Siemens phones (ST55/ST60 are similar, but they are purely ODM models). It is worse than the displays of the new shipments of v-series from Motorola (v300, v500, v600, v80, v400), it is not so bright. On the other hand the screen is one of the best on the market, it doesn’t have many competitors, especially in the form-factor of an ordinary mobile phone.

The screen turns slightly pale when it hits direct sunlight, the picture remains clear and visible even during spring sun, which is very bright.

Joined volume control button is located on left side, just above it a special key for camera is located. On the right side you can see special internet soft-key. Let’s move on to the upper part of handset. Power ON and OFF button is located on the top, IrDA is hidden under smooth plastic. On the bottom part of the phone you can see the interface connector, it is fully compatible with previous models. For the first time the company decided to introduce rubber cork for this port, it is attached to the case really solid. Those who experience inconvenience during its presence will be forced to cut it off. This will be required if you will decide to use desktop charger as well. Of course you can lean the cork on the right angle each time you will need to perform similar action, but removing it completely will be a better thing to do. On the whole the cover fits solid to the case, even after few weeks of using it remains still.

VGA-camera is located on the back side of the phone, a small mirror is located right next to it, on the left you can notice small flashlight. The company does not call this flashlight a flash, this device is used for backlight during process of taking pictures in complete darkness. With its help you can take pictures of objects located on close distance, about 30 centimeters.

The hole which can be seen above the lens was supposed to be used for the camera’s shutter. But just few moments before the official launch this feature was removed, because it affected loudspeaker badly, volume was decreasing.

The back cover is covering battery section. This model use Lithium Polymer battery BST-30, it is installed in such models as Sony Ericsson T230, Z200. Models T610/T630 use battery BST-25, which has slightly more capacity. In this case the battery has 670mAh capacity. The manufacturer claims that it can work up to 7 hours during talking and up to 300 hours in the stand by mode.

We decided to test similar ways of using the phone with K700 and T630. With 45 minutes of talks and up to one hour of Bluetooth usage, 20 minutes spent for other functions (games, calendar, backlight was always turned on) both phones managed to work for about two days. K700 worked for about 10-15 percent less than T630. The explanation is hidden behind different type of batteries, one of them (K700’s) is not as big as the other one. Seems that the company decided to decrease model’s weight and point out its youth status, differ it from the business models.

More interesting thing to do was testing the phone with usage of Radio, loudspeaker, short usage of IrDA, Bluetooth for file exchange. With 3-4 hours of listening to radio via headphones, up to 30 minutes spent for talks and about 25 minutes of other function usage the phone worked for about two days. Basically we used its features for 100%, there was no energy saving around. With not so much time for work this will be average time for all users. It takes around 1.5 hours for the phone to fully charge up.

Considering the screen’s quality, presence of loudspeaker we can come to the conclusion that the phone’s working time is typical enough for similar models. On the whole the phone looks very solid by this parameter.

SIM-card holder is standard, it does not have any lockers, passive construction is used. Take a look at the area which is marked with red arrow, in the upcoming T-series model it will be used for expansion card slot (MemoryStick Duo).

Before going on to the interface description, I would like to say some words about stereo headphone headset. Unfortunately manufacturers decided not to make separate port for the headphones, the plug itself is rather big, with time lockers can fall off. This situation was typical for headsets for other models which had same construction. The lack of separate port for headphones should be considered as disadvantage, especially since the cork is present, it should be leaned off every time you use the headphones.

The headset is convenient, it has special button for voice dialing, phone call decline.

Changes in the interface are noticed right after the phone is turned on for the first time. You will be introduced to your personal helper, who will help you setting up the phone. In several slides you will find out about main soft-keys, will be offered to enter date, time, copy entries from SIM-card into the phone’s memory. In the very beginning you are offered to choose menu language, on other phones this feature is not present right during the start. Pretty simple function, but the first time it got introduced is K700. Basically this helper can make the things better for newbie for whom K700 is first phone from Sony Ericsson. In future it can be left turned on every time the phone will be turned on, it is all up to you weather you need this function or no.

Allright, let’s imagine that the phone is turned on, you are seeing usual T610 appearance, signatures for soft-keys. Let’s try to leaning the joystick in one of the directions and see what will happen. The phone signalizes the fact that there is no shortcut for the earlier made action, and you are offered to bind one. For five minutes most usable functions will be assigned to joystick’s sides, and you will test hot they work. Curious fact that during shortcut setup menu is presented in substrate view of shortcut’s icon.

The main menu is presented with four rows of icons, three in each row. Unlike the previous versions icons look prettier, they are better drawn. Most likely this is due to higher screen’s resolution. In main menu manufacturers decided to review the animation, while moving from one item to other circle which will highlight current item will appear. Animation is extremely pleasant and is not annoying at all, even if you use the phone for long term. Surfing through the menu speed deserves separate praise, no slow downs, everything works surprisingly fast. The user can use fast number navigation in case he wants to, this way road to the required menu item will take only 1-2-3 seconds.

The input convenience remained on the same level, by pressing the # key you will bring up available language list, and be able to switch between them during text input.

Video clip which demonstrates menu surfing (AVI, 8Mb)

That’s about it what can be said about interface’s changes. The manufacturer decided to take care of additional horizontal theme bookmarks. This means that now when you are in the call list menu, which is called by pressing the Call button, you will see not only last dialed numbers but gain the ability to switch between bookmarks with last missed/received calls (horizontal joystick presses). In the phone’s menu such navigation is used in all possible places, it strongly simplifies usage of phone, menu’s ergonomics in this model is extremely high. I’d like to point out that similar horizontal panels are present in the phone book, settings menu and several other menu items as well.

Camera. The phone has VGA-camera on board, it has 4x digital zoom function. Manufacturer points out the fact that the phone’s design is dual, on one hand we have a typical mobile phone and on the other (back side) a sort of digital camera. Considering this we come to the conclusion that the pictures can be taken with one hand, instead of ...
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