It’s been another week or two with the Sony Ericcson P910i and I have a few more observations and will try to answer some questions people have been asking about it.
First, to clarify, I purchased the phone from a retail store here in Los Angeles. It was unlocked and unbranded and I think just off the boat from the UK. My current cell provider is T-Mobile. All that was necessary to get the P910i working was for me to take the SIM card out of my old phone, a Sony Ericsson T610, and put it in the new phone.
The P910i was able to read the SIM card and get my contacts and cell provider info immediately so I was able to make an receive calls. The next step was configuring the phone for SMS text messages, MMS multi-media messages and for T-Mobile Internet. That was and can be accomplished relatively easily by using either the Sony Ericsson support site for the phone or using T-Mobile’s own configuration site.
Both sites work in essentially the same way in that you click on what you would like to configure, say SMS text messages, and then follow the directions to have the settings sent to your phone wirelessly. The phone gets the settings and uses them to auto-configure itself and that’s pretty much all it takes.
I used this method for setting up text messages, multi-media messages and T-Mobile internet. The two sites differ in that on the Sony site you need to select the phone, select what you want to configure, select your wireless carrier and then have the configuration setting sent to your phone. The T-Mobile site only needs you to select what you want to configure, select your phone and then send the configuration through.
Of the two, I prefer the T-Mobile site as it is from the carrier I use so I feel that the settings will work better. I don’t really have anything to back that up, its just my preference. You can probably use either and be fine.
As for usability, I am getting pretty good with the phone. I now have it set up to check my POP email every hour via T-Mobile internet and that works every time. You can also set it to do IMAP if you want but my accounts are all POP. I can also use it to instant message with AOL, MSN, Yahoo and even ICQ using a third-party tool called IM+ from Shape Services.
Also, I am using a couple other third-party apps, AvantGo and Resco Photo Viewer. Resco Photo Viewer I like better than the native photo viewer that comes with the phone. AvantGo is still in beta so it has a few bugs and is pretty slow but still, its kinda cool.
I have solved my bluetooth issues, at least for the moment, by doing a clean install on my 12″ Powerbook and then paring the phone and the Powerbook to use iSync. That has worked four or five times in a row so, fingers crossed, it will keep working. I’m not saying that wiping your computer and reinstalling OSX is a good work-around, I just happened to have to do it anyway due to another issue to it worked out.
Other than that, I still love the phone. It gets great signal, sends email, text messages, pictures, instant messages, reads word and pdf files, browses the web (albeit at GPRS speeds. yawn) and is not that big and looks cool. Plus, it takes pretty good pictures and video and finally syncs with my Mac using iSync. What more can you want?
Oh, I almost forgot, it does give me some sort of error, as indicated by a yellow icon with an exclamation point, during certain calls that I have made or received. I think it might have something to do with encryption of calls but I haven’t gotten to the bottom of it yet. I’ll let you know.
Also, I have tried to update the phone’s firmware using the Sony Ericcson Update Service but as of yet have been unsuccessful. You need to use a Windows machine and the two I have don’t seem to be able to manage it. I am going to be building a new Windows gaming rig in the next week or so (so I can play Half Life 2 as God intended, of course) so I will try to update using that pristine install of Windows XP. I’ll let you know on that one as well.