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Sony Ericsson phones tune into radio

New line is aimed for emerging markets.

Sony Ericsson

As Sony continues to search for the right formula to reclaim its crown in music-playing electronics, one of its newest products may be taking a cue from its roots: the portable radio.

Sony Ericsson is coming out with an attractive new line of phones later this year that include built-in stereo speakers and radios, as well as some unremarkable camera and Bluetooth features. Unfortunately, the radio doesn't seem to receive digital broadcasts--it's just a standard AM/FM, as this is a low-end handset destined for India and other emerging markets.

Sony Ericsson

That's really too bad, because portable digital radios seem to be going through something of renaissance where design is concerned, especially in Europe, with some resembling transistor models from the '60s--an era that was the equivalent of Sony's Golden Age of Radio.