3GSM: Sony Ericsson unveils its first commercial 3G phone

The launch of a new mobile broadband phone and PC card by Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB was announced Monday at the 3GSM World Congress trade show and conference in Cannes, France.

Sony Ericsson unveiled its first 3G (third-generation) mobile broadband handset; the clamshell dual-mode Z1010, which can be used for video calls and video streaming applications on 3G and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) networks, the company said in a statement.

The company also used the opening day of the trade event to launch its GC82 PC card for EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution) networks operating in the dual 850MHz and 1900MHz bands in North America, it said in a separate statement.

The Z1010 handset, the first in a line of 3G phones targeting the consumer market, features dual cameras, one especially for video calls placed below the main display, and dual displays, with the main display offering over 65,000 colours, according to the statement. The phone provides a 384Kbps downlink, a variety of messaging services such as SMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) and video MMS and uses Sony Corp.’s Memory Stick Duo technology, which makes it easier to transfer images, video clips and music files to and from the phone, the company said.

After completing interoperability testing for the Z1010 handset during the second quarter, Sony Ericsson said it plans to have the product available for operators launching commercial 3G service in the second half of 2003. The London-based manufacturer has been shipping test phones since the middle of 2002.

With an eye to the North American market, Sony Ericsson introduced its new EDGE product, which fits into a PC card slot in notebooks, will provide corporate users with access to the Internet and intranets at speeds three times faster than GPRS.