FLASH IN THE PAN
IT’S NO SECRET I’M a bit of a sucker for cool industrial design and in the case of the Sony Ericsson Cyber-shot C902 it was love at first sight. Resplendent in black and silver, the phone oozes class and the silver ridges down its side set it apart from the pack when it comes to the fashion stakes. In the gadget stakes it comes with a five megapixel camera and even though megapixels mean relatively little in this kind of device, it’s still something to tick off the list.
The quality of photos is impressive but the camera’s let down by the flash, which isn’t nearly bright enough – resulting in pictures taken without the flash looking better than those taken using it, even when reasonably close to the object. They come out underexposed and completely unusable. That said, the camera does have an awesome James Bond style slider that makes you feel a bit like a secret agent every time you take a picture. There are also nice touch-sensitive strips down the side of the screen that make accessing camera functions really easy.
Despite the substandard flash there’s a bigger problem with this phone – battery life. While thinner phones do tend to have less battery life, I expected to be able to get through a weekend without having to charge the C902, especially when I hadn’t used it a lot. I can imagine that being very frustrating if you make lots of calls.
That said, SonyEricsson has made great strides in making its menu system easy to use and I was impressed with the simplicity with which I was able to perform most functions. Despite some nice touches the awful flash and the sub-standard battery life made this a short-lived love affair.