On Call: An open letter to Sony Ericsson
Please, Sony Ericsson, stop using your proprietary ports and memory cards.
Dear Sony Ericsson,
Though we've known each other for some time, this is the first time that I've written. For the most part, our relationship has been a good one. Back when AT&T was still AT&T Wireless, the Sony Ericsson T68i was one of the very first phones I ever owned (it's so old that I can't even find the CNET review). At the time, I was the envy of my friends since I had a nifty new feature called Bluetooth. What's more, I was the very first person that I knew to have multimedia messaging.
Though I had to ditch the T68i by the time that I arrived at CNET almost exactly six years ago (happy anniversary to me!), I continued to use your phones periodically as my personal device. And in my official role at CNET, I've reviewed no fewer than 33 of your handsets. On the whole I've enjoyed what I've seen. You've given us brilliant displays, your Walkman and Cyber-shot phones can offer fantastic multimedia quality, and you regularly introduce conversation piece models like the
But after reviewing T-Mobile's recent
Now I know that you've pledged, but the rest of the cell phone world is rapidly leaving you behind. Even Samsung, a company that put a different charger port on almost every phone, has largely moved in that direction already. In comparison, you're beginning to look dated and frankly, a little stubborn. So please, drop that pesky proprietary port without further delay.
On the upside, I was pleased to hear last summer that you'll be dropping the Memory Stick Micro format in favor of microSD cards. With the exception of the X1, you've stuck firmly to the costly Memory Stick Micro cards until just recently (the Equinox requires them). I'm pleased, however, that newer models like the
Lastly, I have to ask that you stop using your proprietary headset connection and adopt a standard 3.5mm jack. I know you're capable of doing this, but I need to see more effort. One of the best features on the
You already offer great phones, but these changes will make them even better. Plus, you'll be showing your customers that you want to offer them the most choice possible. That's a small price to pay for a lot of user goodwill.
P.S. I'd also like to see more of your phones come to U.S. carriers--I fear that we'll never see the Google Android-powered X10--but I'll save that for another column.