Thursday, 25 July 2019

Sony Ericsson P910 (2004)

Sony Ericsson P910
Announced July 2004

Fifteen years ago, if you wanted a smartphone your choice was either Windows or Symbian. And if you wanted the latter, then the best smartphones were probably made by Sony Ericsson.

The Sony Ericsson P910 was the third generation of the P-series of Symbian touchscreen devices. Running the UIQ platform, these smartphones came with a touchscreen while it was still quite rare. Back in those days, Nokia was still very much in non-touchscreen territory.

The 2.9” 208 x 320 pixel screen was not the only notable feature of the P910 – the other was the unique flip-out keypad which had a tiny QWERTY keyboard on one side and a standard number pad on the other. When closed, the pad covered part of the screen and the P910’s software would adapt to the screen size as needed. In addition to the keys, the P910 could be used with a stylus or finger and there was a jog control too.

Connectivity was a bit limited, with GPRS data only – so no 3G, WiFi or even EDGE. Internal memory was expandable with Sony’s Memory Stuck Duo Pro cards. There was a basic camera on the back. The main feature was the operating environment which included a web browser, support for various email clients plus of course any compatible applications that you wanted to download onto the phone.

The P910 was moderately successful, but back then smartphones were still a niche market so it was pretty rare to see one. However, it helped to create a template for the smartphone revolution that happened a few years later.

Sony Ericsson did produce a number of other UIQ phones after the P910, but ultimately it was a dead end. Today you can pick up a decent network-locked P910 for around £35 or so, but unlocked examples and ones with accessories can cost much more.

Image credit: Sony Ericsson

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