Amateur review of Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro

After much though and suggestions made by my dear readers, I finally acquired the appealing Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro smarphone. Powered by Symbian S60v5, this 3.2inch touch screen device offers incredible features like a 5MP autofocus camera, 720 HD Video recording, WIFI (and the usual stuffs) and above all, a full fledge slide QWERTY keyboard.

Today, I invite you to read about my personal experience. I won’t be covering detailed comparison or discussing about technical aspects since this phone is my first experience of this kind. I will leave all this job to The Tech Blogger, carrotmadman6.

Hardware and Software

Weighting only 117 grams and 15mm thick, the Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro is one of the slimmest smartphones with a full QWERTY keyboard and pumped up with most of the latest technologies found in the market. Unlike its big sister, the Vivaz, this phone comes with this famous keyboard and equipped with a 5MP camera instead of the initial 8MP.

One of my greatest fears prior owning a touch screen smartphone was my big fingers pressing simultaneous keys and icons for each tap.

I feel that the choice for this specific device was rightly made, the whole smartphone tailored just for users like me. The large rubber keys are equally distributed over the slide, with adequate spacing to make the user experience pleasant. As for the resistive touch screen, I never thought that I would love it to this extent. In addition to the physical keyboard, the user can also opt to have a virtual numeric or a QWERTY keyboard and a handwriting recognition feature.

Thanks to the phone’s accelometer, you can do incredible things, among ; muting the ring tone or the alarm simply by turning the phone over. I even came across one application which displays the degree of inclination of your car (or anything else) wherever you place the device. “Ils sont fous ces dรฉveloppeurs!

I read that the screen is scratch resistant. I don’t want to test it lol. The device came with a screen protector, so I will leave it like that, at least for now.

Despite the pleasing and trendy look of the phone’s rear view, the back cover of the phone feels somewhat cheap and fragile. Personally, I will try to avoid frequent openings to remove the bundled 8GB microSD card, the 1200mAh battery or the SIM card.

The wide range of free applications available on the net makes the user experience enriching. Although the operating system is quite old, it hasn’t disappointed me till now. As we say in creole : “Dans vieux marmite ki faire bon carry!”.

The 720MHZ processor runs the operating system and the applications smoothly. However, the phone complained a few times about the low RAM available while running several applications despite the existing generous 250MB RAM.

Social networking

Customized for the Vivaz Pro, Twitter and Facebook apps are readily available on the default standby screens. You can choose to use the Facebook app in landscape mode while using the large buttons of the specially designed user interface. However, the app currently has a small login issue.

The workaround? Tap on Connect while using the good username and a wrong password. Wait for the login error. Now use your username and the correct password to get access to Facebook. According to Sony Ericsson, they are working on a fix right now.

Uploading pictures and video on Facebook and Youtube can be done via dedicated menus available. That’s for sharing stuffs. Sony Ericsson and Symbian have clearly dedicated much effort to this social networking aspect of this smartphone.


The 5 mega pixels camera did not disappoint me. It delivers up to my expectations! The only downside is the LED Flash which has to be enabled via the menus prior before use. Anyways, the flash is not really useful.

The focus is quick and precise. A few scenes mode are available : Auto, Macro, Beach etc. The camera also offers a touch focus mode in which you tap the screen to show where you want the camera to focus. Pretty cool!

Here’s a quick video shot in HD mode and directly uploaded to youtube via the phone’s wifi connection :

[HD Mode and other resolution version of this video available on Youtube too.]

In fact, the camera was The determining factor which made me chose the Vivaz Pro over the HTC’s Touch Pro 2. A few hours before the purchase, I decided to forget about the Windows Mobile 6 and the 3.6inch screen of the HTC mainly because of the discouraging camera reviews and bad photo samples.

I have an old S60v5 powered device, so what? I can still do practically anything with it. Just name it!


To tell you the truth, I am quite disappointed with the sound quality. I believed that Sony Ericsson was always good at these things. It seems that I won’t be able to enjoy the stereo sound of my previous Nokia N73.

And to make it sound more serious, Sony Ericsson even forgot to include a built in equalizer. They had to release a separate app!

The purchase

Purchased from an US-based eBay store, the total cost for the device is approximately Rs12,500 (including Shipping and VAT). If you read my earlier post, I planned to spend only Rs10,000 but however, I did not hesitate to invest 25% more. Since I opted for an Express Mail International shipping service, the device was in my hands exactly 7 days after the purchased. Unlocked, the phone came with its charger, an ear piece and a 8GB microsd card.

hmm, what did I miss in this review? Shots from the phone Camera? I will keep that for the photoblog and a dedicated facebook album, keep tuned!!!

I heartily thank all those who participated in the “Choosing my next mobile” blog post. Your reviews, criticisms and suggestions were very helpful for assessing the strong and weak points of the various smartphones. Thumbs up!

76 thoughts on “Amateur review of Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro

Add yours

  1. Great review! How about video playback & web browsing? ๐Ÿ˜€

    256MB & running out of memory? I guess it’s S60v5… Let’s hope Sony Ericsson will update this device to Symbian^3. ๐Ÿ™‚


    1. @carrotmadman6 : Oh *shy*… I will take this as a compliment ๐Ÿ˜‰

      I haven’t tried playing videos other than those already on the phone, which play magnificently well. Pure pleasure to watch them!
      As for web browsing, I am getting used to the default symbian browser and I installed a few others too. Experience? Quite nice, but need to get used to precisely tap the right spot on the screen, especially on small links LOL.

      btw, I also installed the necessary plugin on the blog to turn it into a mobile version one. Lighter and suitable, the mobile version of is now optimized for small smartphones ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. heyy nice review .. Sony Ericsson used 8gb micro sd :S .. they’ve dumped their M2, memory stick pro duo and all now :S .. lol .. the video quality’s really good .. concerning the music, you didn’t talked about earphones ๐Ÿ˜ฆ


  3. the sound is low ? how come ??? :S mine is playing high up without any distortion and matches the reviews on gsmarena :S

    you can debrand and flash the phone to newer firmwares and better capabilities..



    1. @lost wanderer : Hmm, I tried running the SE update software, it tells me that my phone has the latest updates.
      Can you check please?
      Here’s the version displayed :
      Date : 20/08/2010
      Version 1232-0380_R2EA023

      The sound cannot be defined as ‘low’. I would rather say that it sounds like a mono sound : “Kouma dir drome!” ๐Ÿ˜›
      Thanks for your help.

      @Le_Voyageur : Earphones? lol, it is still in its original packaging haha! I need to test it out too!


  4. Ohmygod so overall is Vivaz Pro worth buying? Overall what are the cons? Are you satisfied with it? I’m planning to buy it but I’m still hesitating. I love the functions and design really much but is it good?


  5. Hi @Claire!

    To be short, I find the Vivaz Pro worth the investment. The cons? As I said, my device’s sound is not what I was expecting. @lost wanderer says that he has no problem with that. I will need to check for any firmware updates.

    And I think that automatic flash is the most welcomed in smartphones like these ones. Having to enable it manually is quite annoying + the flash keeps lighted until you disable it, manually.

    These are the 2 main points which Sony Ericsson needs to improve, for now.

    So, how you find the choice now? ๐Ÿ™‚


  6. I REALLY WANT TO BUY IT NOW! HAHA! but i’ve been reading the reviews and many said its not good, but many also said its good. so im confused. im from malaysia. and i want to buy it and im a college student and the qwerty part turns me on! its quite expensive so im still considering whether i shud buy it or not. I mean, I REALLY WANT TO BUY IT. IM NOT HESITATING ANYMORE. I just want to make sure that i wont regret.


  7. Sssss…. Aiiiyyaayaay….
    Pa dire moi ki ou’n prend enn telephone ki ena SLIDE…? Dimal! Tou saki ena moving parts (flap, slide, swivel, whatever) = problem with physical integrity dans le long terme, c-a-d, li “gagne battรƒยฉ” rapidement within the first year…

    Bon, mo touche di-bois pou ou bรƒยฉ…

    Ek pa bliรƒยฉ, apart 3310 ek 3330, pena okenn telephone ki’nn design pou pliss ki 1 year’s (in actual fact 10 months, because a normal service period for westerners is 10 months!!!) service life. Beyond this , expect issues with the thing.

    Allez, cheers, mo arett porte malerr la!


  8. Seriously?! The SE Vivaz Pro?! Coudnt you have just gone for the Nokia C6(and expect frequent updates from Nokia) or the Nokia N900 at Rs13.5k on eBay or the Nokia E5 or the Nokia C3!

    If you remember well, SE stopped supporting Symbian and RARELY update their devices. I’ll eat my hat(if I ever own one) if SE update the Vivaz Pro anytime soon…


    1. Come on @Rwishi, it is no use criticizing the choice.
      btw, did you ever feel the thickness and weight of the N900? And the price (All inclusive)?
      My colleague has a N900, and I think that he will agree with me, the Vivaz Pro is much more better, in terms of design, thickness/weight and especially keyboard usability.
      As for the C6, I did not particularly like the design. Did you notice that Nokia’s models all practically look the same?

      @Torpedo : hey mate, thanks for coming regularly!
      Well, let’s hope this one lasts long, you will be kept informed, you can count on me!


  9. Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro is overall a nice phone , but the querty keypad is small and some time the phone can slip out of the hands. Plus its a slider phone , which make the life of the phone less and they generally get damage earlier. Consider this before buying this phone.


  10. @Yashvin: @I’ve trialled the N900 for nearly 6 months in total and other than the thickness(the weight actually makes it better), there isnt any other design flaw. And the keyboard is perfectly confortable and its the best resistive touch screen phone. Ever. My typing speed on it closely matched my typing speed of that on the iPhone.
    The resemblance in all the lower end Nokia touch screen devices is a marketing strategy to make people think of the Nokia 5800.

    @carrotmadman6: I think you are right ๐Ÿ˜› Maybe it is just for geeks ๐Ÿ˜›

    @DJ: Just download the S60v5 version of the official DivX player from

    @Yowan: Yowan Ram….? Is that you? Symbian is not being replaced by Meego. Symbian is still going to be included in 3/4th of Nokia’s lineup. Meego is reserved for the high-end models…


  11. @ yurit0s:
    Wazzat?? A fannypack?? ๐Ÿ™‚ Nah, ok, i got it, but I did not mention anything about the parts, but I’m a lot weary about the lifetime of anything that contains moving parts – dimann “latest price” li pou dir ou: sorry, you missed your target.

    @ Yashvin:
    By the way, your review is not at all amateurish: you covered almost all aspects that any user would go through when making a purchase. I’m sure hope you won’t act too modest again ๐Ÿ™‚ and that you’ll continue publishing great posts like this more often!!

    By the way, maybe you were so impressed by its functtonalities that you did not mention anything about the display (screen type, brightness, reading comfort during night and day, etc.) and
    autonomy (battery life, type, weight, charging cycle, etc.) Can we get more on these please? And, of course, since it is not (yet?) on display on the shelves of local official resellers / distributors, commiรƒยฉ ek commiรƒยฉ letan ou cwar ou pou capav contigne “glassรƒยฉ”(pas dir mwa ou p’enkor coummencer… :-)) ar ou ti-zouzou la?



    1. haha @Torpedo, toujours toi ๐Ÿ˜›

      So, yes, I will answer to your questions :

      I must admit that it is a bit difficult to read what’s on the screen when you are out under the bright sun. I did not try to increase the brightness to see if that improves the reading. Else, the display at night or during ‘normal’ lighting conditions is totally ok, no prob with that.
      As for battery, it drains down completely everyday, under “under-average” usage.
      That includes phone calls, sms, some wifi. So, I charge mine every 24hrs, and it takes about 2hours for a complete charge.
      But I guess that if you are a heavy user (music, lot of browsing), the battery may die in a few hours.

      As @Rwishi just said, the device seems to be on sale at C&C for s13k+VAT.

      Of course, it’s so cold here, tellement p glacer lol!


  12. Yeah I agree with Torpedo there. Please do mention about the display and autonomy parts. In English please. Hahaha cause that’s the only language I understand!


    1. @Claire : 1 day for ‘under-average’ usage seems ok but depends on the user.
      Earphones? You can forget about enjoying exceptional sound quality with the bundled earphones. I tried my Sony earphone, and the sound is great ๐Ÿ™‚


  13. it’s a nice phone but symbian is on the verge of dying.

    It’s good if u are planning to stay with this phone for atleast a year otherwise it’s a kill


    1. Yes @buddy, I am not among those who change mobile as often as their clothes ๐Ÿ˜‰
      I have been using my Nokia N73 for more than 3.5 years now and the need to change was triggered by frequent problems with the N73.

      Thanks for your visit ๐Ÿ˜‰


  14. Hi all,

    Am planning buy this on new year. i read all your opinions which givs me lot of confdnce to buy it. can anyone tell me the capacity of the memory card included ? and is it worth of buyng at 20k in india ?


  15. Hello @Ashik! Welcome to my blog ๐Ÿ™‚

    The bundled memory card is 8GB. 20k? kindda difficult to say anything on that. I suggest that you go on ebay, add the shipping costs and tax before comparing the price. Good luck!


  16. thanks Yashvin,

    am not interest buy any products at ebay and other online shopngs. okay hav tried this moble in 3g network sim ?


  17. Hey there i just bought a reconditioned phone just below Rs 5000, do u know if there’s any external costs applicable to it? I bought lots of other things on ebay like jewelery,shades and shoes and have never had to pay anything other than the actual product and shipping. I have always had it delivered to my doorsteps aswel.
    Thanks and happy new year


  18. It’s a BB from the us, shipping through USPS. Any idea? I’m actually not the one paying for it thats y im wondering.
    -I just checked, it’s closer to just above Rs4000 than just below 5000


    1. @Sharia, that’s better.
      Assuming that the phone is Rs4000, you are going to pay vat on 15% of Rs3000 + you will be paying a parcels office fee of around Rs100 most probably.
      These are the only charges to get the item out of the parcels office and customs.

      btw, I hope that you purchased an unlocked Blackberry, else you need to pay and get it unlocked in Mauritius.
      Keep us informed,


  19. Thanks, must feel like a teacher-going over the same thing all the time with someone new coming up and asking the obvious all over again. I so hate that, cant believe i just did it:p
    I do appreciate it, thnx
    Yp i did remember to get one that is unlocked.
    Back to you soon hopefully
    Good day!


  20. You won’t be surprised to find the large quantity of bugs in Symbian OS9.4, I just ditched my for an Android phone

    Nokia is replacing Symbian with WP7 OS as it is considered outdated with lack of development, Nokia has closed down their main Symbian dev team
    Why use such an unstable OS?


  21. the only consideration for choosing my new phone was the quality of the photo, vivaz pro’s image quality was far inferior than vivaz so i choosed to take vivaz. and it lived up to its expectation

    yes the led flash is useless i dont know why sony didnt use xenon for this phone

    the sound quality is really awful

    it costed me 13,000 as for this time i prefered to take my accesory from a local store rather than ebay

    but wiz an investment of 13,000 you could easily have got a N8 nokia in an ebay store…


  22. Hi Yashvin,

    ***Wish you a Happy new year***

    Yesterday i bought this vivaz pro and its hossom with all features.

    I just have some queries to put here.

    1.How to check d remaining batery backup like previous sony phones ?
    2.How to go back while using Qwerty keypad alone ?
    3.Have you got the pc suite cd and card reader from the bundle ?
    4.where i hav to get d gud anti virus for this phone ?

    You will be Thankful if help on above queries.


    1. Welcome @Ashik ๐Ÿ™‚
      Happy New Year to you too.

      So, for the battery, I have tried a few S60v5 apps, but finally I am using SlideUnlock, which also provides a battery meter displaying the % left. As for the qwerty, I must confess that I really don’t know how to do it. I find it annoying to always look for the ‘back’ menu on the touch screen or in the menus.

      No, I did not get any cd or card reader. Sony Ericsson Vivaz Pro comes bundled with the 8gb memory, the usb cable, the charger adapter, battery, manual, headset, and that’s all I think.

      Antivirus? lol, do share if you got any good ones. (ps : I haven’t installed any on mine yet)

      Hoping to see you here again ๐Ÿ™‚


  23. Thanks yashvin,

    am not getting you for my first qustion. can u tell me briefly how your seeing batter % left ? can you help me to get that


  24. Sony Ericsson and other manufacturers won’t be releasing any more Symbian devices and Nokia is shutting down the Symbian Foundation. Symbian^4 has been cancelled and OS9.4.X is no longer in development, Symbian OS is being crushed.
    There is no more reason to get any S60 device as this platform is reaching its end.
    Why not use android as it is much more advanced than S60?


  25. @Yowan
    Symbian isn’t dead. It’s still being actively developed, although slowly because Nokia are concentrating more on MeeGo. But it’s only for mid-end devices. N8 is probably the last Symbian Nseries (that’s what they had planned).
    There’ll be no S^4 because Nokia have adopted a continuous development model – all devices will have a continuously updated Symbian OS (like Android 2.1 -> 2.2 -> 2.3).

    That said, in its current state, yes, Symbian is doomed…


  26. @carrotmadman6
    Nokia is firing most Symbian Devs and are planning to close the symbian foundation because of financial issues and they are now concentrating on WP7 (its a rumor), only Nokia and small Japanese firms are maintaining Symbian and most firms such as BenQ, Motoralla, Lenovo, Samsung, Sharp, etc.. have ceased all development and are using Andoird atm
    N8 is not the last Symbian^3 device
    This OS will be slowly overrun by android in the incoming months (it dropped from 72.8% of the market in Q3 2006 to 36% in Q3 2010.)


  27. Hey there, got the phone quite some time back, paid around 500 something which is quite ok. Thanks for the help. Happy 2011


  28. Hi Yashvin,

    Thanks for your prev help. I hav downloaded pc suite frm d web and installed in my pc and it was askd me to install hotpix for xp2 i also installed that but i couldnt able to connect my pc to use pc suite. can you help me on this ?


    1. Hello @Ashik!

      Unfortunately, I haven’t myself tried the pc suite yet koz the installation process warns me about my old windows xp ๐Ÿ˜›
      I need to install the latest updates (and hotfixes) to be able to use the pc suite.

      sorry mate ๐Ÿ˜ฆ


  29. Hi Yashvin,

    When i install some applications it shows “certificate error contact application author” do u have any idea about this to resolve ?


    1. @Ashik : Hi! That’s the classic error message lol.
      There are a few tricks which u can use to install that one. Just try to google that, I am sure that you will get the relevant sites.


  30. hey, am i need of help! actually i have one vivaz pro and i got a small problem with it! i cant send messages.. no matter what i do!

    i check my account, refill it
    check settings
    hard reset
    soft reset

    i did all i knew.. still nothing happned

    maybe you can solve this for me


  31. does the hd recording is similar to your d5000 hd recording, if am not mistaken, both are 720ps .. or there is still a gap between real hd and “hd” ?


  32. Hi Yashvin,

    How r u ?

    Still i hav not got a gud tpt app for check left batery %.
    most of the applicatn shows ” certificate error contact author”
    could you help me to sort out this probs ?


    Ashik Mohamed P


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