Xperia Mini Pro Review : The Mini but Mighty Successor


A year ago, I wrote about Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini Pro review. I’ve always wanted an adequate camera performance and X10 mini pro edition gave me that. More than enough, the 5MP camera is always beautiful to see  the image. Compared to other phone camera, the quality of x10 Mini pro is more than average. It is always fun to have a small but powerful, as their motto : Mini but Mighty.

A week ago, I bought another version of mini pro. Xperia line up has launched another version (upgraded version) of the X10 families. Xperia mini pro is an upgraded version of X10 Mini Pro. What’s so good about the newer version of mini pro??

The most important thing of android version in X10 Mini Pro has been an end to them. Sony has stated an upgrade for x10 families for Q4 this year but I can’t be sure about it anymore. Actually the éclair version of android implemented in X10 families is adequate enough for us. But user’s need more games and other experience in new GUI with dual touch (pinch to zoom) and any other improvement that you can get for a higher version of android. X10 Mini Pro has a limited hardware performance on CPU and RAM that will limit its performance in playing a hardcore game.

In this case, Sony Ericsson made another version I mean an upgrade version of Xperia line ups. They provide a better hardware simulation to provide an upgrade for later version. All Xperia line ups has “GingerBread” version of android (android v2.3.3). For my recent review, I will focused on my Xperia Mini Pro to get in depth on my new gadget. And somehow, I’ll show you some comparison to X10 Mini Pro about the hardware and software performance.

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Previously known as XPERIA X10 mini pro2 (Specifications)

      • General
        2G Network
        GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
      • 3G Network
        HSDPA 900 / 2100
      • HSDPA 850 / 1900 / 2100
      • Announced
        2011, May
      • Status
        Available. Released 2011, August
      • Size
        Dimensions
        92 x 53 x 18 mm
      • Weight
        136 g
      • Display
        Type
        LED-backlit LCD, capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
      • Size
        320 x 480 pixels, 3.0 inches
      • – QWERTY keyboard
        – Scratch-resistant surface
        – Accelerometer sensor for auto-rotate
        – Multi-touch input method
        – Sony Mobile BRAVIA Engine
        – Proximity sensor for auto turn-off
        – Timescape UI
      • Sound
        Alert types
        Vibration, MP3 ringtones
      • Loudspeaker
        Yes
      • 3.5mm jack
        Yes
      • Memory
        Phonebook
        Practically unlimited entries and fields, Photocall
      • Call records
        Practically unlimited
      • Internal
        512 MB RAM, 400MB storage
      • Card slot
        microSD, up to 32GB, 2GB card included, buy memory
      • Data
        GPRS
        Up to 86 kbps
      • EDGE
        Up to 237 kbps
      • 3G
        HSDPA 7.2Mbps, HSUPA 5.76Mbps
      • WLAN
        Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
      • Bluetooth
        Yes, v2.1 with A2DP
      • Infrared port
        No
      • USB
        Yes, v2.0 microUSB
      • Camera
        Primary
        5 MP, 2592×1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, check quality
      • Features
        Geo-tagging, image stabilization, smile and face detection, touch focus
      • Video
        Yes, 720p, check quality
      • Secondary
        Yes, VGA
      • Features
        OS
        Android OS, v2.3 (Gingerbread)
      • CPU
        1GHz Scorpion processor, Adreno 205 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon
      • Messaging
        SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push email, IM
      • Browser
        HTML
      • Radio
        Stereo FM radio with RDS
      • Games
        Yes
      • Colors
        Black, White, Pink, Turquoise
      • GPS
        Yes, with A-GPS support
      • Java
        Yes, via Java MIDP emulator
      • – Digital compass
        – SNS integration
        – MP4/H.263/H.264/WMV player
        – MP3/eAAC+/WMA/WAV player
        – TrackID music recognition
        – Google Search, Maps, Gmail,
        YouTube, Calendar, Google Talk
        – Document viewer
        – Voice memo
        – Predictive text input
      • Battery
        Standard battery, Li-Ion 1200 mAh
      • Stand-by
        Up to 331 h (2G) / Up to 340 h (3G)
      • Talk time
        Up to 5 h 40 min (2G) / Up to 5 h 25 min (3G)
      • Music play
        Up to 29 h

There are a lot of improvement that you may see from this Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini Pro.

Key features
  • Quad-band GSM /GPRS/EDGE support
  • 3G with 7.2 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
  • 3″ 16M-color capacitive LED-backlit LCD touchscreen, HVGA res (320 x 480), Sony Mobile BRAVIA engine
  • Full four-row, slide-out QWERTY keyboard
  • Android OS v2.3 Gingerbread
  • 1 GHz Scorpion CPU, Adreno 205 GPU, Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8255 chipset
  • 512 MB RAM
  • 5 MP autofocus camera, LED flash, geotagging
  • 720p video @ 30fps, continuous autofocus
  • Front facing VGA camera
  • Wi-Fi b/g/n and DLNA
  • GPS with A-GPS
  • microSD slot (32GB supported, 2GB card included)
  • Accelerometer and proximity sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • microUSB port (charging) and stereo Bluetooth v2.1
  • Voice dialing
  • Adobe Flash 10.3 support
Main disadvantages
  • No smart dialing
  • No DivX/XviD video support out of the box
  • Doubtful video recording quality

Designs

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The Xperia Mini Pro is an upgraded version of X10 Mini Pro, You can see from the screen length. It is 3” inch compared to 2.55” inch in X10 Mini Pro. The Keyboard has also been an improvement that provide a cursor and other button implemented to it. There are only 1 hard button (home button) in the screen, the other 2 (return and menu button) is a touch sensitive.

The LED-backlit LCD unit is enhanced by Sony’s proprietary Bravia Mobile Engine. The display produces really nice colors, has decent contrast but the viewing angles are limited. There’s considerable loss of color when viewing at an angle. What we were impressed with is the excellent sunlight legibility.

One thing that gives another huge improvement on Xperia Mini Pro, they implement a front facing camera in this mini phone. It made a Mini but Mighty motto even great. With a slight redesign in the phone, this made me fall in love another time to have it as mine.

The Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro is comfortable to handle and fits every pocket. There isn’t a more compact messenger currently on the market. The Xperia mini pro is a well-built handset, with high quality, albeit plastic, finish. The slider runs sharp and even, no wobbles and such. The mini pro lives up to its name, efficient and a pleasure to use.

Performance

The 1200mAh battery is said to ideally last 340 hours of standby and 5 hours and 25 minutes of talk time in a 3G network. In reality, the Xperia mini pro managed over 3 days in stand-by, connected to a Wi-Fi network most of the time. When we really put it under pressure though, the phone barely lasted a day. It was always connected to both the 3G and Wi-Fi networks, we did heavy browsing, music and video playback, and the usual benchmarks.

Xperia Mini Pro has been implemented a Gingerbread version of android (2.3.3). You’ll find a very fast operating system inside. Xperia Mini Pro inherits the previous version of the corner-based home screen but they have improved it to a better version. You can add up to 4 icon in each corner, it also have 5 native home screen and you can make a folder in the home screen : effective and efficient.

Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro
The Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro UI

Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro
Overview helps you find the widget you are looking for

Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini proimage
Creating folders is possible too

Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro
Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro
Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro benchmarks

You can see the performance of Xperia Mini Pro has overlapped the Nexus S, HTC Desire, etc. I believe this is because a screen resolution 320×480 compared to a higher one in Nexus S, HTC desire, etc in the same hardware (1GHz and 512 RAM). With smaller screen resolution, Xperia Mini Pro boosts the performance and gives the user a new experience in this phone.

Another part of an improvement in Xperia Mini Pro is in the camera GUI version that gives us a very intuitive software. You can now zoom in this Xperia edition compared to the X10 Mini Pro. The GUI porvides an efficient and effective mode in showing a tools in small screen.

imageimage

The video mode provides HD 720p in recording. Though it’s not the best in it’s class, but Sony Ericsson gave us an adequate result. Sony Ericsson has the best technology in capturing an image. With 5MP, the result shows a better image. There is a Smile Shot mode, that will analyze a smiley before shooting.

The quality displayed in Xperia Lines up are very bright. This is because Sony Ericsson has implement a BRAVIA Engine to all their Xperia Lines up that will give a vivid color in pictures and videos shown. It’s not as good as Super AMOLED that implemented in Samsung Galaxy S II but BRAVIA Engine has boost the screen performance. Thanks to Sony Ericsson for their technology.

The image and video gallery has implemented the 3D Gallery that can provide a folder version of image and video. We can Pinch to Zoom with the dual touch that will provide a better experience in viewing our gallery. The pinch to zoom can also be used in games and web browser. The web browser can now support a flash, so you can view youtube without opening a youtube application (view in your web browser like in the notebook).

Gingerbread also provide a wider game and application in this phone. The CPU of 1 GHz, Graphics of Adreno 205 and 512 of RAM is very good in running games. This hardware is all the same in all the Xperia Lines up (Arc, Xperia Play, Xperia Neo, Xperia Pro, etc). Why I chose the Xperia Mini Pro?? This is why, with the same hardware but smaller screen resolution only, the price has cut half of it.

Sony Ericsson have managed to squeeze an Arc’s engine in the Xperia mini pro. The Reality display is here too, never mind it’s a smaller HVGA unit. The real deal though is the proper QWERTY keyboard.

The Xperia mini pro runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Thanks to the lower screen resolution, the mini pro is as fast as possible – you can see that in the benchmarks and our demo video. The whole UI is fluid and responsive, there are no lags, nothing to annoy even the most demanding users.

The one thing missing, that you get with the Arc and the Neo, is the Exmor R camera sensor. There had to be something missing, right? We still think though that the 5 megapixel stills and HD video are more than enough in a handset that puts compact size first.

We’ll say it again though, it’s hard to match the Xperia Mini concept – and Sony Ericsson are so far unchallenged in the ultra-compact class. To fully appreciate the Xperia mini pro, we just have to look back once again at the predecessor. The original Xperia X10 mini pro has a smaller low-res screen, an older generation 600MHz processor and the outdated Android 2.1 Eclair. If someone were to offer you a phone that addresses all those issues, would you not snap their hand off?

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 mini pro
Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 mini pro

For me, The Sony Ericsson has shown a very huge improvement on the mini’s. From all the performances shown above, with small dollar to gave, and to experience the gingerbread with some more good entertainment series. I fall in love once again for this Mini Pro series. I don’t be disappointed for X10 Mini Pro, but an Upgrade made me experience more in innovations. Go For It, Mini but Mighty.

3 thoughts on “Xperia Mini Pro Review : The Mini but Mighty Successor

  1. A]2[B says:

    I’m pretty sure that this one will gonna end up like the old one..
    Coz, Xperia are notoriously known as a rubbish phone, got a little torture and it will gonna end up in a trash can..:D

    So, you better remember a suggestion from your old pal, BUY IPHONE, DUDE?!

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