Sony Ericsson Cedar Review

Although Sony Ericsson's GreenHeart proposal does tend to come across as a small disingenuous -- specially whenever you take into account the vast quantity of mobile phones that end up as nothing much more than landfill -- it's certainly a step in the appropriate direction. The Elm and Hazel marked the opening shots of this righteous eco-warrior campaign, and impressed us with their functionality and range of features. The Sony Ericsson Cedar continues the very good work achieved by its forebears, and proves that being sympathetic to Mother Nature does not need to mean being saddled with an ugly phone. The Cedar is arguably one of Sony Ericsson's much more attractive offerings of late, combining a two-tone colour scheme with smooth lines along with a visually pleasing, ridged keypad.

The elegant two-tone finish is complemented by the embossed Sony Ericsson logo on the back, although the slightly raised-up join between the front and back covers provides a comfy grip to stay away from the slinky phone slipping from your hand. As the handset is slightly oddly weighted, dropping it's a distinct possibility. It does feel a small plasticky in the palm of the hand, but then this acts as a reminder that even though your phone may feel a tad flimsy, a minimum of you're performing your bit to save the planet. The button layout is fairly standard, you'll find Option and Back buttons directly under the screen, along with a multidirection key surrounding the Confirm button. You'll also come across the usual Start and End call buttons denoted by the tell-tale green and red telephone receiver icons. The ridged keypad is fantastic to use and also the slanted buttons make it quick to differntiate between the keys to ensure that you don't end up with too several typos, even when speed-texting. The chassis also houses a Micro-USB port for quick charging along with a 3.5mm jack for plugging inside your headphones.

The 2.2-inch TFT LCD screen is really a small on the little side, even though it does the job, despite its reasonably low 240 x 320-pixel resolution. It can handle video playback, even though the images do tend to look a small soft and blurry, so it's not truly suited for long-term watching. The video section of the Media folder features a direct link to YouTube to ensure that it is possible to search and stream videos with out having to use the somewhat awkward browser.

The lack of a touchscreen or QWERTY keypad means that utilizing the alphanumeric buttons makes web browsing a bit of a trial. It can take a although for information to load over the 3G connection, even though obviously it's a considerable step up from utilizing entry-level GPRS. The Access NetFront web browser is really a bit unwieldly to use, particularly when it comes to web pages that have a lot of images.

The Cedar's 2MP camera performs precisely like you think it does- it isn't the worst thing ever but it certainly isn't incredibly very good. The images we shot with the camera had oversaturated colors and pretty low levels of details. The very good news was that it performed like any 2MP camera would and it kept noise levels in check.

There's a little selection of widgets that will be parked on the property screen, which includes Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Notes along with a clock. Considering that this isn't truly smartphone, this is really a nice glimpse of high-end functionality, even though inevitably the Twitter and Facebook are rather much more clunky than those that you'd get from iTunes or Android Market. The Twitter widget in specific appears to refresh at a snail-like pace and only a rudimentary selection of functions is provided, which includes tweeting, replying or retweeting. There's also a shortcut to Facebook in the Messaging folder.

The phone's biggest challenge is finding an audience. It might be argued that the sector of the market it seeks to conquer is rapidly falling to budget smart phones, against which the Cedar looks technologically anaemic. If you're searching for a device with impressive features but don't want a confusing selection of PC-like alternatives to contend with, we suggest it. Who knows -- its environmentally focused manufacturing ethos could even make you feel very good about your self.


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