cellsuite news

The best new phones in Japan

Saturday, July 16, 2005


The D901is has a nice gimmick with its retractable keypad, though when I was using it I couldn't help but feel that it would break really easily after a few months of use. This is a common complaint of mine with the phones on the market in Japan, they seem 'plasticy' and not very well constructed. It might be a personal thing but I like my phones to feel tough.

The slider mechanism is activated by a button and it is pretty cool, that is if you can press the button in one smooth move when pulling the phone from your pocket. You will have to practice this a lot because of the stupid position of the button. Its just not placed where you fingers would naturally land when gripping the phone.

The screen has a nice sharp display and the phone is generally good, however, the buttons are all on the small side ( maybe its because of my large - foreigners fingers ) and the navigation could do with a bit more thought.

Thursday, July 14, 2005


First up is the F901iS.

This phone is well built with a solid feel, quite a chunky case and a little stubby aerial.

The screen seems a little small but has a nice sharp definition.

The GUI has a nice modern retro feel for the navigation and features a theme set as the interior of a stylish apartment, quite original.

The controls seems quite slow to respond, however, the finger print reader was really cool.

You set the finger print by sliding your finger down the reader slowly three times in a row. The phone maintains a digital image of your finger print which you can use instead of a keypad number for locking various functions. I was having a great time freaking out my co-workers by totally locking the phone up and going for coffee. It was all good until the third trial when I swiped my finger to unlock the phone and it couldn't read my print. I got into a mild panic after about 3 minutes of trying until it eventually let me in. Its a fun feature and has masses of 'cool' factor but might be a bit overkill for a mobile phone. Perhaps, if DoCoMo get their way and we all use phones as wallets this feature will be a necessity.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Greece get 3G I-mode

NEC have announced that they will be shipping the first i-mode enabled, 3G handset for use outside of Japan. The new N600i, built in collaboration with Ericsson the Swedish mobile company, will be first be available in Greece which will come as a surprise to many who thought the first role out would take place in Germany. It features a clamshell design and has a 1.3MegaPixel camera.

Here is the full press release

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Sony Ericson W31S

Well this the damn sexy new phone that has just been released by Sony in Japan. It is geared towards the teenage market and features a well crafted mp3 player, an fm radio and a 2 MegaPixel camera. The controls are a bit limited but with the addition of a MemoryStick Duo - the smaller sized memory stick, you can hold a good few hours worth of music and photos, combine that with its funky styling and this phone is sure to be a hit with the Japanese youth.
This phone is the latest offering from Sony for the AU network, Japans second largest carrier and is 'WIN' compatable - a flat-rate packet payment scheme for data transfer and access to the EZWeb mobile internet. The phone also features support for Macromedia Flash lite and Qualcomm's Brew.
The phone is not geared up to be a totaly independant music device as you probably wouldn't want to rely on just downloaded music content because of the high price and as the phone doesn't run on the 3G network the transfer times would be sluggish to say the least. However, using the MemoryStick cards you can quickly and easily transfer your existing playlists onto the device from your PC. Another great thing to note is that Sony have finally relaxed their grip on the ATRAC standard and now offer support for regular MP3s.
The only thing, apart from not being 3G, that brings this phone down is its cheap and plasticy feel. Once you have held the phone for a short while and have goten used to its good looks you will notice that it is quite thick and does feel like it would be prone to damage. Sony could have spent more effort creating a more quality feel - the phone just feels cheap.
As a step towards a fully featured, completely independant music device built into a mobile phone the W31s does put up a good show, however, it is not a far leap from the older SO505is that I used to own, even the display and navigation are almost exactly the same although the W31S has a special headset adaptor, lovely QVGA graphics and better quality audio.
When this phone eventually meets 3G the results should be pretty spectacular.