The parade of "social media" phones continues this week as Sony Ericsson joins Microsoft and Nokia in unveiling two devices aimed at the text-happy set. The latest members of the Walkman family, the Sony Ericsson Zylo and Spiro, combine the usual music player with dedicated Facebook and Twitter apps in slider designs.
Sony Ericsson Spiro
The Spiro is the lower-end model of the pair. On it, you'll find a 2-megapixel camera with video recording, a personal organizer, stereo Bluetooth, an FM radio, a 3.5m headset jack, and a Micro-USB charger port (yay!), a microSD card slot (double yay!), USB mass storage, PC syncing, messaging, an Obigo Web browser with support for EDGE networks, and a speakerphone. It also promises the "best sound quality ever on a mobile phone," plus a music ID application and access to Sony Ericsson's PlayNow music store. And in case you want to share any photo and video creations, you can upload your work directly to YouTube, Flickr and Picasa.
The Spiro will be available by the third quarter of this year in four color schemes: contrast black, sunset pink, spring green, and stealth black. Sony Ericsson says the handset will come to "select markets," but with only dual-mode versions available (GSM 8150/1900 and GSM 900/1800), it won't be a world phone.
Sony Ericsson Zylo
The Zylo has a similar design, though it's slightly larger and it offers more powerful features. Inside are a 3.2-megapixel camera with video recording, messaging and e-mail, a microSD card slot, an Access NetFront Web browser, a personal organizer, PC syncing, USB mass storage, Google Maps, an FM radio, phone as modem support, stereo Bluetooth, and support for 3G networks. The music player has everything you'll find on the Spiro, but adds video streaming, shake control, and some interesting wallpapers.
The Zylo will be available in the third quarter of this year in three color schemes: jazz black, chacha silver, and swing pink. It is a quad-band world phone (GSM 850/900/1800/1900), but for now it won't support North American 3G networks.