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Review: Sony Ericsson Xperia Play

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If you discount the games included on the Xperia Play, Verizon Wireless actually restrained itself from overloading the device with unnecessary apps. In fact, there's almost no bloatware. As always, you're more than welcome to add as many apps as you like from the Android Market.


The Xperia Play supports the usual bunch of Bluetooth profiles, including mono and stereo headsets, phone book access, and object push. Pairing with headsets and other smartphones and/or PCs was easy to set up. Call quality through mono headsets was OK, music and gaming quality through stereo headsets was not that great. Sending files back and forth to other devices wasn't too troublesome.


The Xperia Play doesn't break any new ground in the clock department. It has the same lock-screen clock behavior that most Android handsets do. The time is displayed in a large, white, digital read-out when the display is woken from sleep. There is also a separate clock app if you need to set an alarm, or time how fast your friends can chug a 2L bottle of root beer.


The Xperia Play comes loaded with both Google Maps and Verizon's VZ Navigator service. Both pieces of software are great for navigation purposes. Google Maps, in particular, has added a few great features lately, such as tighter integration with other Google services like Places and Latitude. VZ Navigator is excellent at routing directions, but costs $10 per month; Google Maps is free. In terms of GPS accuracy, the Xperia Play was able to lock my approximate position (within about a half-mile) in a few seconds. It zeroed in on my exact location (to within about 20 feet) in seven or eight seconds.


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