Sony Ericsson X10 Android Smartphone – Marketing buzzwords make me suspicious

by Ben Smith on 5th November 2009

The much-anticipated Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 – an Android powered  touch-screen smartphone has been announced adding yet another platform to the Sony Ericsson stable.

As we commented at the release of the Symbian-powered Satio, Sony Ericsson can produce some attractive hardware, but we’ve also previously criticised proprietary connectors, odd memory-card formats, dire battery life and (perhaps more seriously) a apparent lack of any real sense of leadership or purpose from the firm.  And whilst there’s much to celebrate in the announcement of the X10…

Xperia X10 - Standard Ports

With the X10 Sony Ericsson finally accept that standard connectors are best... at last.

…particularly the introduction of standard headphone, data and charging connections and the use of the standard Micro-SD memory card format in preference to some of Sony Ericsson’s odder Sony-originated formats – the announcements are sickeningly full of meaningless marketing words.

How have I managed without an ‘infinite button‘ previously? And what kind of explanation is this?

Infinite Button: Just one press to all about your friends or all the artist info you need.

And what on-earth does this actually mean?

Intelligence capabilities, integrated into Mediascape and Timescape™, can automatically recognise connections between contacts, content and media. By recommending alternative ways to communicate or guiding to new media experiences, consumers can discover more in a truly open way.

…and marketing-noise aside isn’t it all actually just a lot like HTC’s ‘Sense’ social overlay … or INQ’s social integration? …and Palm‘s? …and Motorola‘s? …or even a little bit like Nokia’s Maemo‘s?

I really worry this is style-over content…

You may actually, briefly, catch a glimpse of the handset in the video above if you watch closely, amongst the many models and carefully-placed luxury brands and it’s clear to see that Sony Ericsson see this as a very desirable (and presumably premium-priced) device.


…but if it doesn’t work then all of that will count for little.

We’ve already seen this week that senior Sony Ericsson staff don’t appear to know (or have to suffer) the dire specification of the Satio’s battery… and it’s disappointing to see this info also omitted from the marketing materials for the X10:

Sony Ericsson - Products - Mobile phones - Specifications - Xperia™ X10

Click for a larger version: Sony Ericsson suggests 'talk time' is 'not applicable' to the X10.

So whilst I like a bit of ‘sensuous black‘ or ‘lustrous white‘ (I’m not kidding you – those are the colours they announced with a straight face)… it’s hard to get too excited (yet) about what should be a very nice device.

Beautiful 4″ screen aside, we know little of the user-interface layer Sony Ericsson propose to add to the soon-to-be-obsolete Android 1.6 (everyone else is releasing 2.0 handsets) and HTC have demonstrated with their Sense UI how long it can take to get that sort of this quick and battery friendly.

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