Sony Ericsson Xperia neo review
A good standard Android smartphone with an excellent camera, though you may want to find alternatives to some of the installed apps
Review Date: 6 Sep 2011
Price when reviewed: £320
Reviewed By: Ben Griffin
The Xperia neo is an inexpensive Android 2.3 phone which is designed for imaging; the 8-megapixel camera uses Sony Ericsson's new Exmor R sensor tech, which moves the wiring to the back of the sensor and so frees up space for more light to reach the sensor's surface.
Pictures taken with the camera are excellent. While many phones' cameras produce murky, lifeless shots, the neo captures colours accurately, and images had plenty of detail. Low-light shots had less noise than those from most handsets and there's an LED flash to help, but twilit shots were still significantly worse quality than those you'd get from a decent compact camera.
Daylight photos look great on the 3.7-inch touchscreen - which has an 854x480 resolution. Colours are bright and there's enough space for web pages, images and videos. If you want more space, you can always plug the phone into your TV with the supplied HDMI cable, and view your photos or play 720p videos on the big screen. Alongside that screen is a front-facing camera for Skype chat sessions or self portraits.
The neo has a 1GHz single-core processor. It's a fairly inexpensive phone, so this is to be expected - we tend to only see dual-core processors on higher-end handsets. It still runs Android 2.3 smoothly and Sony Ericsson's interface tweaks don’t seem to impact its performance. These tweaks are generally welcome, but we're not so keen on the Timescape social networking app, which displays updates on your home screen and makes it a bit of a mess. This is easy to turn off, though.
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