Beyond the basics, the Z750a also offers PC modem capability, a code memo for storing sensitive information, voice commands and dialing, PC syncing, e-mail, USB mass storage and Instant messaging. Full Bluetooth with a stereo profile is also integrated and can use the phone as a remote control to connect with other Bluetooth-enabled gadgets. More offbeat applications include an Audible player for listening to content form Audible.com, a tool for composing your wallpapers and GPS services through Google Maps.
Though it's not an official Walkman phone, the Z750a has a comparable music player. The interface is minimal, but the player supports MP3 and AAC files and offers a fair feature set including shuffle and loop modes, stereo widening, and an equalizer. It also supports album art but Sony's Mega Bass is absent. You can transfer music to the phone with ease by connecting it to a PC with a USB cable. And once music is on the phone, you can organize tracks by artist, track name, or playlist. For even more listening fun, the music player also supports podcasts and audiobooks, and the Z750a has an FM radio.
The 2-megapixel camera shoots photos in three sizes (2-megapixel, 1-megapixel, and standard VGA). Other options include two quality settings, three color effects, a night mode, white-balance and brightness adjustments, a digital zoom (unusable at the highest resolution), and four shutter sounds (plus a silent option). There's also a self-timer, a multishot mode, and an option for taking panoramic shots. The camcorder takes clips with sound and offers a set of editing options similar to the still camera. Clips meant for multimedia messages are capped at 25 seconds; otherwise you can shoot for as long as the memory permits. Photo quality was good, with acceptable colors and little blurriness, but we miss having a flash. The Z750a comes with PhotoDJ and VideoDJ applications, and you can connect the phone directly to a photo printer.
You can personalize the Z750a with a variety of color themes, wallpaper, and screensavers. If the options included on the phone aren't enough, you can purchase more with the WAP 2.0 wireless Web browser. You also can download more ringtones or create your own using the MusicDJ application. Investigators, QuadraPop, and The Sims 2 are the included Java (J2ME) games included, but you can buy more.
We tested the quadband (GSM 850/900/1800/1900) world phone in San Francisco using T-Mobile service. Call quality was very good, actually. We could hear callers clearly; their voices sounded natural, and we had enough volume. Also, the signal was strong, and we experienced no static or interference. We also had no trouble using the phone in loud environments as the phone didn't seem to reflect background noise nor did it pick up wind noise. Only occasionally did the sound warble at the highest levels, but it wasn't a consistent issue.
On their end, callers said we sounded very good. They could tell we were using a cell phone, but that's not unusual. Also, automated calling systems were able to understand us. The speakerphone was passable but not completely reliable. The sound tended to vibrate on the external speaker, and we had to speak close to the phone in order to be understood. On the other hand, Bluetooth headset calls were respectable. The Z750a's music quality also was decent, though the experience is best through a stereo headset. Like with the speakerphone, the phone tended to vibrate at the highest levels.
Luckily, the Z750a supports three UMTS bands (850/1900/2100), so it is compatible with 3G networks in North America. That's a welcome sign, as Sony Ericsson typically leaves us out when it comes to 3G. In the United States, that means AT&T would be your only current choice for a 3G carrier, but you should be able to connect to its wireless broadband network for fast data speeds, streaming video, and video calling. At the time of this writing, however, we weren't able to test the 3G connection.
Unfortunately we noticed that the Z750a interface was a tad pokey. It could take a couple of seconds to open the menus, switch between screens, and open and close applications. It caught us off guard, and it wasn't an experience we enjoyed.
The Z750a has a rated battery life of 9 hours talk time and 16.6 days standby time. In our tests, we got a talk time of 7 hours, 30 minutes. According to FCC radiation tests, the Z750a has a digital SAR rating of 1.42 watts per kilogram.
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