* Prices may differ from that shown
I acquired the Sony Xperia U around 3 years ago as it was part of a Virgin Media deal, and so I took it. It cheap phone to go with my £5/month contract, and I wasn't expecting too much from it. However, once I received and start using it, I found that this little Android powered tank was a brilliant piece of equipment.
To begin, the Xperia U is a nice size, very light weight and can fit perfectly into almost any pocket, an extremely useful asset. I have taken this phone with be practically everywhere on my person because it does not matter what I am wearing. The Xperia U also has a nice long battery life compared with other smart phones. Depending on whether I am using WiFi or not, the phone can last about four days without needing to be charged at all. The screen is also a nice size, not too large and not too small. This can however be detrimental to the product.
The keyboard of the phone can be extremely annoying at times, as it is very small when held in a upright position. Turning the phone sideways however, allows much more freedom and eliminated this problem. The phone does have a fairly low processing power, but can still run most android apps at an acceptable standard. The camera is not the best but is still decent enough for casual use. The flash is very powerful and that helps along the camera quite nicely. The software does have the occasional glitch and bug which can be annoying and the phone will have to be reset after a long time. The phone has a 2GB memory, but there is NO SD CARD SLOT. This is its biggest downfall.
The best thing about this phone though is its durability. After 3 years I have not once cracked or damaged this phone other than the speaker port cover. The screen is still in perfect condition and I have dropped it more times than I can remember. Extremely durable and it still works fine.
I bought this phone when I was back in Switzerland starting new branch of my business. It was in that time, when iPhone 4S was the most wanted phone. Sounds like ages ago? Well, it is actually just about 3 years ago. That's how fast the market grows! In that time, I just needed a basic cheap phone where to put my Swiss sim card and this Sony Xperia U seemed to be a good choice.
This phone had a 4inch screen and the display was very clear. The camera was good for a cheap phone as well. But here the advantages for me end. At the beginning I kinda liked the lightening on the bottom of the phone but after a while it started to become annoying and lets be honest, it does not look so professional. But I guess it is suitable for some teenage girl, who loves colors. I got this phone in black and i could change the bottom of the phone (below lightening) to pink (never used. But again, this is just my personal opinion and maybe someone likes perky colors on her-his phone. The touch keyboard is way to small and is very easy to make mistakes. After having the phone for about 6 months, the keyboard went insane and did not want to cooperate with me as well. Writing just one word was a battle. Display cracked a month after and I knew it is time to give this phone good bye. I sold it on Ebay as Faulty for £3.99 in auction.
I am very happy I am not dealing with this phone anymore.
Recently sold this phone for the Xperia S. The Xperia U is quite a good phone for the price. It is quite stylish and streamlined, although the plastic back isn't the best. The coloured bar and flashing light strip I personally liked, although it will depend on peoples tastes.
The speed of the phone is very average, I found that it would freeze up a lot, and browsing websites could be very difficult sometimes.
The phones interface which Sony designed is very nice, and easy to use, one of the reasons I continue to buy Sony Phones.
I really liked the Ericsson music player on the device, and the playback quality through the speakers is quite good.
The screen quality, and brightness is amazing. However I found the 3.5" screen to be slightly to small for my needs.
Overall a cheap and basic affordable mobile in a sleek form from Sony.
The Sony U is actually a good, little Android powered phone. It fits in the palm of my hand so I don't have to fear that it will slip. It also looks good - it's eye catching. Also, with the phone you can also always change the bottom bar. Thus if you feel bored with your phone, you can change the bottom bar. There are many colours, such as, pink or yellow. It makes your phone look brighter and generally more eye-catching.
However, I dislike the constant flashing bar. Firstly, it drains a lot of battery and it also constantly is on, so using the phone in the dark is very annoying. Unfortunately, Sony does not have a feature that allows you to turn it off. However, there are various apps, on Google apps, which allow you to turn off the constant flashing bar.
My favourite feature is the keypad. You are able to slide your fingers, from letter to letter, to spell out a word. I love it. It can be so annoying when you have to spell something word by word, especially at night. This feature is amazing and so convenient.
What I truly dislike is how many google apps there are on this phone - that I cannot uninstall. This takes up various memory, when Sony does not have a micro sd slot. This, in my opinion, is the worst feature. After all, the phone only has 4GB memory, the other 4GB is not open to the user. If you thus like to have various songs, images and apps on your phone - Sony U is not for you.
The touch screen on the phone is great; it is so responsive. It's great how much the screen responds. You do not have to fear the slowness of the touchscreen or that it will not respond.
The camera is simply adequate. It takes pictures - but it is nothing remarkably amazing.
Overall, the phone is great, for somebody who likes a small phone and who does not need various memory.
I've had this phone for over a year now, on contract, it being my first smart phone I thought it was great at first.
It is a good little smart phone and has survived my daughter's wrath many times. I loved this phone to begin with, it is small enough for my hands, small enough to fit in my pocket, and any little compartment in a bag. It does all the things I want from a smart phone, social networks, games, camera, texts, calls, WiFi etc.
It's camera isn't amazing quality at only 5 megapixels but it's good enough. Although it's video recording is not the best though, it doesn't record sound very well. The camera has multiple different settings that you can put on for different environments, like night time portrait, portrait, documents etc. It even has a front camera, although not great quality. This phone is an android phone, it has plenty of free apps and games that you can download. I mostly use it for texting and social networks, and it's fast enough going from app to app. Although if you do have a lot of apps installed this will slow down your phone. It's memory isn't great but there isn't a lot you can expect from such a small smart phone really. It's battery life is also not the best in the world, but I use my phone most of the day and have to recharge it over night, every night, I haven't had to do that with previous phones.
After having this phone for over a year, I've recently started to dislike it, as I said it does slow down over time with all the apps and it's memory isn't great. It's started to become unresponsive but I think that may be mostly due to my daughter. For me, the absolute best thing about it is it's size, I don't want a massive brick phone, and this was just the thing for me.
At first glance, the Xperia U is a good-looking, smart little phone that fits nicely in your hand, and has the added bonus of an interchangeable bottom in black, pink white or yellow! The strip above this also lights up and is a different colour depending on the theme and colour scheme you choose, and also changes to coordinate with any photo you may be viewing.
The on/off and volume controls are situated perfectly for ease of use, and the swipe function to lock, and navigate menus is also very straightforward. You can customise the multiple home screens to include any apps, shortcuts or widgets you wish (e.g. if there is a person in your contacts you phone frequently, you can install a widget which, when pressed, calls that person immediately. The on-screen keyboard is fine for those with small fingers, but with the extremely sensitive touch screen and small keys is, according to my significant other, rather frustrating to use if you have larger hands!
Powered by android, there is a wide range of apps and games that can be downloaded to the phone at the touch of a button via the Play store whch is simple to access and navigate.
A good camera is important to me when choosing a phone, and the Xperia's 5MP camera does not disappoint. The video recording, however, is disappointing. Not for those who want to record high quality videos.
Now for the main problem for me - the extremely oversensitive touch screen! I can't count the times I've accidentally pressed the mute or speakerphone buttons whilst making a call or sent a text before it was finished!
---When I first heard of and purchased---
Until about July 2012 I had been using a Nokia C3 and had slowly started thinking about upgrading to a new phone as my current Nokia was about 2 years old and was starting to wear out.
I had been looking around at different phones and was going to avoid a touch screen phone as I had owned a Nokia XpressMusic before the C3 and found it was really terrible so I was hesitant to try out another touch screen phone.
I found the Xperia U on the Carphone Warehouse website and was initially attracted by the 8gb of internal storage (I believe it uses 2gb for system, 2gb for apps and the other 4gb is for your media such as music and video etc)
I was still hesitant so I looked up videos on YouTube demonstrating the phone being used, I saw from the videos I watched that the touch screen was very responsive and so I decided I would try out the phone in a store.
After trying the phone in the store I decided to order the phone when I got home, the phone arrived within 2 days and tried it out as soon as I got my Sim card plugged in.
---What I use the Phone for---
I mainly use the phone to text and occasionally browse the internet which I find the phone does very well, although the on screen buttons for the QWERTY keyboard could be a bit bigger as I find myself accidentally pressing the wrong letter.
I find the touch screen very responsive almost like using a an I pod or an I phone and the android OS runs well without any problems (I have had the odd freeze or crash since updating the phone from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich.
The app store works really well and is easy to navigate, it is divided into Apps, Music, Books, Magazines and Movies and can easily just search for the app I require.
The notification bar at the top of the screen is also useful for telling me when an app has downloaded and installed, it also tells me if someone has sent a text or a message on Facebook, although since updating to the latest Ice Cream Sandwich firmware version I find that the phone doesn't play the notification sound and just vibrates so I find that messages may go un answered until I get the chance to check the phone.
---Issues / Disadvantages---
One issue is the battery life, I find it doesn't last more than about 3 days and it isn't helped by the fact that the alarm clock can't be used while the phone is switched off thus causing further drain on the battery life.
Overall I would give this phone a 4/5 rating as the phone is still very good apart from the problems I mentioned above, I hope this review helps anyone looking for a cheap alternative to the more expensive options available from Apple or Google
I think it was around September last year when i decided to buy this phone. I loved the way you get to change the bottom bar to many colors: White, yellow, pink and black. I got given the pink and the black one when i bought the phone. I first used the pink one for a bit then decided to change it to a black.
One of the things that i really love about this phone is that when your listening to music and you press the unlock button it straight slides to a widget on the lock screen that allows you to pause the music and change it. Talking about music, i also love the way they set the music gallery out. You can also add favorites etc.
The camera is one of the best things about this phone although the front camera is not as good unless your outside, which your always not. The normal view camera is very detailed and is High Quality (HQ). Same for video's, again the front camera is not as good and the normal view camera. There is also 2 3D-camera's which i really could not find the time to use yet but I'm guessing its good.
Another thing about this phone that really made me buy this phone is the fact that it is waterproof. If you are the kind of person that isn't responsible for handling phone's and you drop them frequently then i suggest this because you never know were exactly you are going to drop it. I dropped it in a puddle like a couple of months ago and i was glad that nothing happened.
It is an android phone so you get to take the advantage of Google play store, now android used to have its own market but thank god that Google bought it. There is most apps you can probably find in the apple play store however one very popular iPhone(iPod and Ipad) app that android yet does not have is 'Cam Wow' and that's a shame. Be careful, too much apps can mess up the phone, by that i mean freezing and slowing down, my phone only freezed 2 times since iv got it and i used to have a hell load of games.
You can shot pictures even quicker with the Sony xperia. when your phone is locked, simply press hold of the camera button and it will open up the camera and take a picture for you.
Another very cool thing is that while your talking with someone on the phone, you can 'Multi-task' basically when your talking on the phone you can press the home or back button and it will go to the main screen. You can even play games whilst your taking, baring in mind that you wont be able to hear the person your talking with unless there on loud speaker or earphones. Another thing is that you can also turn the lock button to a 'hang up' button when you are talking with someone on the phone. You will be able to find it in the call settings.
On the bottom of the front screen you have 4 slots to put things that you want to access quickly the things you use the most.
The color of the led bar changes, for example when your on pictures, i think it just picks out the main color from there and uses it in the led bar. However if you get annoyed of the led bar then simply download 'screen filter' from app store make sure the 'enable soft-key backlight' (on the app) is without a tick. Then you just have to press 'enable screen filter' and then your done. But, you still get the light on pictures and when your on the music application.
I had this phone for about 2-3 months now and have yet to find a fault. This phone was picked amoungst a whole shop full. I paid £129.99 at a phone shop on o2. My one came with a pink extra strip at bottom which is very pretty. Above that is a colour changing strip which the colour can be changed in phone settings. The phone is a touch only phone and is always in perfect sync. It has an android system and uses google play for all its apps, ive found that the phone I can download most apps with no problems. The phone has both wirless and phone internet connections and always runs at top speed. My husband brought another top phone at same time but prefers mine as his keeps crashing. The only draw back to this phone is there is no sd carf slot which isnt too bad as ive never run out of space. It has an amazing camera at 5mp and flash, with which uve taken some amazing pictures and videos. This phone is defently worth its price and maybe more as it cannot be faulted what so ever
I have just bought this phone to replace my worn out Orange San Francisco. I have to say, I am seriously impressed.
First impressions when I bought the phone were that it felt really really well built. It has a good weight to it, the plastics feel very solid, and the back cover is rubberised. All the buttons are rubberised, and have a satisfying click to them. When turning it on, I was shocked how quickly it was on and up and running. I realise my old San Francisco was no speed demon, but this is really very fast.
Quick Spec Summary:
Dual Core 1GHz Processor
8GB Storage, 2GB for system, 2GB for Apps, and 4GB for your files
Mali-400MP GPU (Single Core)
5MP Camera with flash and 720p Video recording and front facing camera
480x854 3.5 inch screen LED screen with scratch resistant glass
Android 2.3 with 4.0 update available.
Seems a bit of a bargain, right? It definitely is.
Continuing with the performance of the phone, as I said, it is very very fast. I hardly ever get any sort of lag. Web browsing is fast, multi tasking is fast, games work brilliantly, I can't fault it here.
The screen is lovely. Due to being so high resolution on a smaller sized screen, everything is very clear with a great amount of detail. The touchscreen is very sensitive, and is very accurate. It also has the Sony Bravia engine software, which really improves picture and video colours.
Camera performance is almost perfect. The Camera comes with a load of features, infact, more than my actual camera! It even has the auto panorama mode, where you press once and then slide the phone across, a feature which has now just been included on more expensive fruity phones. The front camera works great in Skype, and the only disadvantage I can find in this area is the 720p video recording. While it does record usable video, it's not of the finest quality and won't be replacing a video camera any time soon. Standard picture quality however is fantastic, and the flash works brilliantly.
The phone also has a cool light bar at the bottom which I call the mood light. It lights up when the touch buttons below the screen are pressed, and lights in the color of your chosen homescreen wallpaper. It also is used in the Gallery, and changes colour depending on the picture being viewed.
The downside to this phone is the lack of micro SD card slot, and the fairly limited internal storage, with only 4GB available for things like music and video. For me this is not a problem as streaming music services can be used and I don't store or record a lot of video on my phone.
Sound quality from the rear speaker is so-so. It's better than a lot of phones, but it's still nothing to shout about, and isn't very loud. The phone does have Sony's xLOUD option to help with this, but I found it made the speaker sound very distorted, so turned it off. Sound quality through headphones is brilliant however, and the 3d effects that can be selected are excellent. In call quality is also very good, and having asked others, I sound very clear to them.
The overall experience of using the phone is also very good. I was a bit apprehensive about buying a phone with Android 2.3 Gingerbread this late on and having to wait for Ice Cream Sandwich, but Sony have done a really great job of making it a pleasure to use, without diverting too far from the normal Android experience.
As an end note, you can change the rubber cap at the bottom of the phone to personalise it, but as mine came with a black one or a shocking pink one, I think I'll be keeping the standard black one.
In short, if you like your phones to be a bit smaller like me, and don't mind the limited internal storage, this phone is an absolute bargain. The Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update is being rolled out as I write this, but even with 2.3 this phone is great, and I would recommend it to anyone.