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Sony P990i - still crap

2007, crap, p990, rant

I'm getting to the end of wanting to keep my Sony POS990i. It's difficult to know how they managed to get away with completely killing off the P series with such a poorly designed and implemented phone; let this be a lesson to those that don't follow the maxim “If it ain't broke, don't fix it”.

In the old P900, you could enable the speakerphone merely by flipping the keypad down. This made it very easy to answer whilst handsfree, or whilst calling someone from a conference room.

For whatever reason, that feature isn't implemented any more. Instead, after your call has been answered, you can press 'More' and then 'Speaker'. This often involves shouting out to the people when you hear them answering (but you don't know when they've done that, because you can't hear them) and mumbling something about if you cut them off then you'll call back. You then have to do a few random keypresses on the rocker to (hopefully) hit the speakerphone button.

And yet there's a button on the side for taking pictures.

What Sony have completely forgotten is that this thing is supposed to be a phone. Some would say, therefore, that focussing on phone-related features wouldn't have been a bad idea. Especially if you're going to market this phone as having speakerphone capabilities, perhaps being able to activate them without holding the phone to your head wouldn't be a bad idea.

And just as laughable, I was composing a message the other day (as one does) which went over the arbitrary 160 character limit. My old phone used to tell me when I was getting close to this (indeed, would tell me how many messages it would be sent over). No, not the P990. I'm supposed to guess. And when I went over the limit and ended up on 3 messages, I figured I'd go back and remove a couple of words. So, here's an interesting idea. You're designing a phone, and put in a dialog to inform the user that they've gone over the 160 character limit. Do you:

  • Pop up a dialog indicating that it would take 3 messages, and let the user go back and edit the message if they weren't happy with it
  • Pop up a dialog indicating that it would take 3 messages, and let the user throw away the entire message without as much as saving it in the draft box; after all, if they typed 3 messages worth of text, they can type it again, right?

So, based on all this, will you:

  • Buy high-quality Sony Ericcson POS-series phones in the future
  • Buy any other phone except the Sony Ericcson, not only because it's easier to spell but because they're easier to use

I'll let you make your own mind up.