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Review: Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S

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When the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc was released earlier this year it wasn’t available to the Telstra customers eager to get their hands on the popular device.

Now that problem is a thing of the past with the new model – the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S – available exclusively to Telstra customers.

Among the improvements are a faster 1.4Ghz processor, the latest 2.3.4 Android mobile operating system and the ability to capture 3D panorama pictures.  

DESIGN

From the outside the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S is identical to the previous version expect for one small detail – the back panel is now all one colour.

The rear panel of the Arc S is all the same colour - one of the few differerences between the Arc S and the original

What you still have, though, is a supermodel thin device which elegantly curves inwards to fit the shape of your hands and make it feel even better when you’re holding it.

Another feature that’s still there is the impressive 4.2-inch reality display which uses the same Sony Bravia technology seen in their smart TVs so your pictures, videos, apps and web pages look great.

The Sony Ericsson Arc S is available exclusively through TelstraFEATURES

On the camera front the Arc S is packing the same 8-megapixel camera which can also capture 720p high definition video.

But this time out the camera has another impressive ability – it can capture 3D sweep panorama images which can be viewed on a 3D TV using the included HDMI cord.

Users simply select the 3D panorama mode and move the Arc S slowly left to right or right to left and the device does the rest including stitching the images together into one super wide photograph.

Being a device that runs on the Telstra network the device is not only going to be fast it will also take advantage of another feature of the Next G network – HD voice.

This feature can be enjoyed by Telstra customers at no extra cost and takes advantage of the Arc S’s excellent microphone and utilises that quality and passes it through the network to users with HD voice compatible handsets.

PERFORMANCE

One of the most impressive improvements of the Xperia Arc S is the noticeable improvement in speed thanks to the 1.4Ghz processor.

This is evident across a number of activities and features of the device.

Apart from apps and menus opening even faster, the browser can render web pages 25 per cent faster and start up the camera 25 per cent quicker as well.

And while using the camera, the faster processor lets you snap off even more images – we managed four pictures in less than 10 seconds.

There’s still Sony Ericsson’s Timescape software layer above Android which keeps all the handy features close at hand and lets you see your latest contacts, communication and social network in a scrollable interface.

On board there’s only 320MB of memory but a microSD card slot makes it possible to expand the memory to up to 32GB.

Battery life provided nearly a day and half of operation, which is the same as the previous Arc model.

The Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S

VERDICT

Sony Ericsson has enjoyed success with the Xperia Arc and they’ve advanced the latest device even further thanks to these improvements.

If you’re a Telstra customer and are after an Android device – the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S is well worth your consideration.

Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S

Price: $600 outright or for $10 a month on $59  Freedom Connect Plan for 24 months.

Four and a half stars (out of five)

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