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GPS comes to Walkman phones with Sony Ericsson’s W760i

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Sony Ericsson has added built in GPS to its Walkman phone lineup for the first time with the unveiling of its W760i sliderphone.

Announced at the CES event in Las Vegas, the W760i comes with an integrated GPS receiver for onboard satellite navigation, 3G HSDPA high-speed download technology and a 3.2-megapixel camera.

The W760i arrives with the latest version of Sony Ericsson’s Walkman Player that supports Shake control for skipping forward and back tracks, plus SensMe mood-matching playlist technology, and TrackID. A pair of front facing stereo speakers are designed to enhance the loudspeaker playback experience, although Sony Ericsson also announced an optional speaker case accessory, the Active Speaker MAS-100, that can be attached to the phone to crank up sound further.

A 1GB Memory Stick Micro card is supplied in-box to go with 40MB of internal storage, as well as quality stereo headphones with a standard headphone jack – although there’s still no 3.5mm jack socket on the phone itself.

The W760i’s GPS receiver can be used with the Wayfinder Navigator subscription service app, supplied on the phone. This can provide over the air updates and turn by turn directions for countries all over the world. Other apps, such as Google Maps Mobile – preloaded on the W760i – can also be used with the GPS receiver, and Sony Ericsson has included a fitness application, Tracker, that uses GPS to keep a log of your performances when running or walking.

Sony Ericsson has brought the motion sensor technology into play for other features, including automatic screen rotation for viewing content, depending on how you’re holding the phone, and motion sensor gadgetry is also incorporated into its 3D games capability. The display is a 2.2inch, QVGA (240×320 pixels) 262K-colour TFT screen

Standard 3G functionality – video calling via a secondary camera, high-speed video and audio downloads and streaming – are present, and the W760i has a full web browser inside, plus support for RSS feeds. Email and instant messaging are offered, plus there’s a picture blogging option when using the camera or video. Stereo Bluetooth and USB connecttivity are featured too, as you’d expect.

The W760i, which will be available in Rocky Silver, Fancy Red or Intense Black, weighs 103g and measures 103(h) x 48(w) x 15(d) mm. Sony Ericsson quotes battery life of up to 400 hours standby or 9 hours talktime (4 hours on 3G networks). The Walkman player can go up 20 hours between charges.

The W760i is being lined up for release in the second quarter of 2008, with expected price still to be confirmed.

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