Er, wonders continue…?

Despite my post last week about about ‘wonders never ceasing’ it seems Sony Ericsson had another ace up their sleeve this week; the Xperia Arc S.

Sporting a 1.4Ghz single-core processor and the 2.3.4 software updates also mentioned last week, it’s being touted as an improvement to the already impressive – and award winning – LT15i model released just 5 months ago. SE have taken the old ‘if it ain’t broke’ adage and tinkered with it a bit to deliver the ‘ultimate entertainment phone’.

From the Arc S press release:
Taking the award-winning sleek design from Xperia arc,the latest addition to the Xperia family has a processor upgraded to 1.4Ghz, Sony 3D sweep panorama technology and access to the Sony Entertainment Network services – “Music Unlimited” and “Video Unlimited”. Xperia arc S features 25% faster camera start up and media conversion , along with 20% faster web page rendering compared to Xperia arc:
  • Super fast 1.4 GHz processor
  • 3D and 2D sweep panorama photography
  • 8.1 MP camera with Exmor R™ for mobile image sensor
  • 4.2“ Reality display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine
  • Latest Android™ platform Gingerbread 2.3
Whether the Arc S can live up to this moniker is another matter – reading the white sheet here the battery delivers the same power as before – 1500mAh. 

So let’s not forget what goes up, must come down and a 20% performance increase has to be compensated for somehow, so for those out there using the Arc and having to recharge it every 24 hours (based on the performance I get from the existing Arc, as an example, running at 1GHz and with a 1500mAh battery), no amount of software-related performance updates are going to compensate for a 20% increase in power consumption so you’re probably going to have to charge it every 15-20 hours and have a charger (or spare battery) with you at all times.  

The other element to this phone is why 1.4GHz single core? The market for dual core has picked up considerably in the last months. HTC have delivered a belter of a handset in the Sensation and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the iPhone 5 came with dual core. So again, why single core? Why 1.4GHz single core? Yes, it’s fast, but it can still only do one thing at a time, just a little quicker! 

Looks like another missed opportunity to me, especially when you consider the ongoing third-party development with the Arc that lets those who’ve unlocked their bootloader install a new kernel…and overclock the handset to 1.78GHz. The Arc can be overclocked to over 2GHz, however the boot.img that I have been using is restricted to 1.78 GHz as anything over that can potentially be a little risky to use in terms of processors overheating and exploding next to someone’s head etc..!

IDespite my intial gripes, the 3D Panorama app seems to expand on the 2D version beta tested to X10 (and some more daring Arc/Neo owners) back in June which I raved about. To have this app on the earlier-released 2011 phones, without having to root and fart about in framework/permissions, is something I’m very much looking forward to as it delivers some cracking pictures.


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