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The Sony Ericsson W600 walkman spinner
By Jørgen Sundgot, Monday 13 June 2005  E-mail story  Print story 
Sony Ericsson's W600 walkman phone for the Americas takes on a spinner form factor, offering 256 MB of on-board memory and a 1.3 Megapixel camera.
Read also: Sony Ericsson W600i review

Sony Ericsson W600i
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Sony Ericsson W600i
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Sony Ericsson W600i
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Sony Ericsson W600i
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Sony Ericsson W600i
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Following the announcement its W800i walkman phone series for Europe more than six months ago, Sony Ericsson today announced that the company will also deliver a walkman phone for the American market. Dubbed the W600, the handset is the second of its kind to be launched under the walkman umbrella, and features several changes as compared to the W800i.

Boasting a spinner form factor as opposed to the candybar styling of the W800i, the W600 centers around its 1.8" display with 262K colour depth and a resolution of 176 x 220 pixels. As with the W800i, its audio player software offers a broad range of functionality commonly found in dedicated portable audio player products, supporting MP3 and AAC file formats.

Transfer takes place via the USB connection of the handset, with the W600a boasting a whopping 256 MB of onboard memory as opposed to the 34 MB of the W800i, which instead comes bundled with a 512 MB Memory Stick Duo card. Unlike the W800i, however, the W600 does not feature any means of memory expansion, limiting users to the 256 MB of onboard memory.

The W600 comes bundled with Disc2Phone PC software which manages the transfer of music to and from the handset, and also ties into Sony's CONNECT music download service to allow for the playback of DRM-protected audio on the handset. According to Sony Ericsson, the W600 will play music for up to 15 hours with the phone on, or up to 30 hours with the phone in music mode, in which case the phone module is shut down.

Other features of the tri-band GSM 850/1800/1900 MHz handset include support for GPRS and EDGE, the latter of which is only available in Sony Ericsson handsets for the American market. A 1.3 Megapixel camera has also found its way into the W600, which is a step down from the 2 Megapixel one found in the W800i, however it remains capable of recording video as well as shooting stills.

Similar to the W800i, the W600 is also equipped with an integrated FM radio, which trumps that of the W800i through its inclusion of RDS to avoid frequent tuning issues in densely populated areas. Users can listen in either through the built-in stereo speakers of the handset, or alternatively employ the 3.5 mm headset jack to connect the headphones of their choice. As with its older sibling, the W600 is also capable of muting music upon receiving incoming calls, shifting to the 40-tone polyphonic ringtones of the handset - or MP3/AAC ringtones.

Equipped with MegaBass bass enhancement as well as stereo widening and software to let users mix their own music and video clips on the phone itself, the W600 also offers support for J2ME MIDP 2.0 to allow for the installation of 3rd party applications as well as 3D accelerator hardware for improved gaming. Other highlights include integrated Bluetooth and Infrared for short-range connectivity, a HTML-capable microbrowser and support for SMS, MMS and Wireless Village based instant messaging.

The W600 also known as the W600a will be available in the American market at beginning of the fourth quarter of 2005, with Sony Ericsson expecting the handset to retail for under $250 USD.
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