The C902i is Sony Ericsson

The C902i is Sony Ericsson's latest offering to the camera phone world, with a 5 megapixel camera that features face recognition technology and a funky lens cover built into its slim, stylish body. Throw in HSDPA and Bluetooth A2DP and you've got a very capable new handset - but is this something new, or just another 5 megapixel candybar?

First impressions of the Sony Ericsson C902i are very good, with the handset feeling reassuringly heavy in the hand, yet noticeably slender in its 108mm x 49mm x 10.5mm metal body. Actual weight of the device is a fairly average 107g, but the sheer compactness of the device makes it seem higher. The result of this is a feeling of quality and durability, which is mirrored by the sophisticated styling of the device. Up front you'll find the usual array of buttons and a surprisingly large looking screen, until you turn the device on and realize that the screen isn't quite as large as the plastic window covering it. However, there is a reason for this - which we'll come to later. The screen itself was bright and easy to read, with 262k colors and a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels. It was also easily readable in direct sunlight and at night.

Handset design isn't always Sony Ericsson's strong point, with tiny or awkward buttons sometimes the bĂȘte noire of its phones. However, all is sweetness and light here. The numberpad buttons are large, individually shaped and very easy to hit at speed. Fast texting is no problem, and I was comfortable with the number pad from the outset.

The other front keys are also very comfortable to use. The D-pad is large and its central select button, although small, is slightly raised which makes it very easy to find. To its left and right, the Call and End keys, softmenu keys, Cancel and Sony Ericsson Activity menu key are all the same size but have slightly different shaping which again assists ease-of-use. It is all no-nonsense stuff.

The screen's 240 x 320 pixels and 262,000 colours are pretty much par for the course and as I've come to expect from Sony Ericsson the screen is bright and pin-sharp. It does, though, look a little lost most of the time. It measures 2 inches diagonally and there is a band about half a centimetre wide on both its left and right long edges, which seems like dead space when you first switch this mobile phone on.

Tapping these you can quickly perform a range of functions: switch from shooting to viewing mode, switch back to camera mode, switch to video mode, change focus setting (for example choosing macro and face detection modes), switch between normal, BestPic, panorama or frames shooting modes, choose a scenes mode (portrait, sports, document etc), set the self timer and set the flash.


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