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Sony Ericsson's T303 Ups The Glitz Factor

It's not jewel encrusted, but vendor hopes polished metal and gleaming surfaces appeal to the fashion conscious.

The pocket-sized Sony Ericsson T303 combines phone, camera, Bluetooth and FM radio.
(click for image gallery)

Sony Ericsson is not the first, just the latest, to design and package a mobile phone that it hopes users will also consider as a fashion accessory.

The T303 slider phone will be available midyear, the vendor said at the product's introduction Tuesday at the CeBIT trade fair in Hanover, Germany. No pricing information was immediately available. It comes in a couple different versions: T303/T303c is a GSM/GPRS 900/1800/1900 megahertz phone; the T303a is a GSM/GPRS 850/1800/1900 megahertz phone.

"Our aim was to create a phone that would function equally as a daily companion as well as something to show off on a night out," said Lykke Taersbol, senior designer at the Sony Ericsson Creative Design Centre. The unit's mirrored screen, metal housing, and chrome finish are intended to do the trick.

The T303 is equipped with a WAP 2.0 XHTML interface for Internet connectivity, as well as a 1.3-megapixel camera, and a 1.8-inch screen with 128x160 pixel resolution. Up to 10 MB of memory is available, with 9-hour talk time and up to 400 hours in standby mode.

In addition to support for Bluetooth accessories and USB devices, the phone also has a media player with Track ID, and an FM radio to handle users' multiple audio media needs.

Sony Ericsson is the world's fourth largest handset maker with 9% of the market, trailing Nokia, Motorola, and Samsung. The relative maturity of mobile markets in North America and Europe has led some forecasters to predict relatively sluggish growth globally. Consequently, emerging markets like China and India have become more appealing to mobile phone makers.

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