Svelte, eye-catching clamshell phone in red, compatible with T-Mobile’s 3G network (available in select markets)
Compatible with T-Mobile’s MyFaves service–unlimited calling to your five most called contacts
2-megapixel camera/camcorder; Bluetooth for handsfree devices and stereo music; M2 expansion up to 4 GB; digital audio player
Up to 9.5 hours of GSM talk time (3.5 hours on 3G networks), up to 250 hours (10+ days) of standby time
What’s in the Box: handset, battery, travel charger, wired handsfree headset, quick start guide
T-Mobile Sony Ericsson TM506 Red HIGH
With an all around eye-catching design, the compact and stylish clamshell Sony Ericsson TM506 for T-Mobile keeps you connected to your closest friends and family members with T-Mobiles myFaves. It’s also Sony EricssonÂs first handset supporting T-Mobile’s HSDPA 3G network (in select markets), which provides fast web downloads and multimedia messaging. With built-in GPS and Telenav Navigator software, you can get turn-by-turn directions via voice and screen as well as see nearby restaurants, gas stations, and more. Other features include Bluetooth for handsfree communication and stereo music streaming, a 2-megapixel camera/camcorder, memory expansion via Micro Stick Micro (M2) media, digital audio player, and up to 9.5 hours of talk time.
The eye-catching, compact clamshell TM506 delivers an exceptional Web experience thanks to T-Mobile’s 3G network (available in select markets).
The TM506 operates on GSM 850/1800/1900 networks and can handle high-speed data connectivity via T-Mobile’s EDGE network (which stands for “Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution”). This high-speed, mobile data and Internet access technology is fast enough to support a wide range of advanced data services (with average data speeds between 75-135Kbps), including video and music clips, full picture and video messaging, high-speed color Internet access, and email on the go.
It’s also compatible with T-Mobile’s UMTS/HSDPA 3G network, which operates on the 1700/2100 MHz AWS spectrum. This phone is designed to automatically connect to the best available network (3G or GSM/GPRS/EDGE) to provide faster data speeds when accessing the Web or downloading content from the T-Mobile t-zones content portal. T-Mobile is currently rolling out its 3G network, and it expects by year’s end that its high-speed data network will be available in those cities where a majority of its subscribers currently use data services.
Call your favorite people with T-Mobile’s myFaves service, which allows you to call up to five of your most common contacts–on any network, even landlines–without using any of your minutes. You’ll also get free domestic long distance and no digital roaming charges anywhere across the US on all calls. (All myFaves plans require a two-year contract.) Learn more about myFaves from T-Mobile.
Download cool new games, HiFi Ringers (real songs by today’s hottest artists), MegaTones (instrumental versions of songs), and wallpapers quickly, as well as stay connected via the Web, instant messaging, and email.
The Sony Ericsson TM506 proves that good things come in small packages. Its compact design fits into any pocket, purse or briefcase for consumers on the move. A thin outer display (1.1-inch, 128 x 36 pixels, monochrome) on the sleek ebony gloss clamshell allows you to glance at caller ID without having to open the phone. It also provides current time, signal strength, and battery life. The interior screen measures 2.2 inches, has a 240 x 320-pixel resolution, and supports a 262K color depth. The alpha-numeric keypad has a unique overlapping circular design surrounded by lighted accents and they have a rubbery feel for easy keying.
The phone has 32 MB of internal memory, which can be expanded via optional Memory Stick Micro (M2) media, up to 4 GB in size. The internal phonebook provides storage for up to 1000 contact entries, with up to seven phone numbers per entry as well as an email address, street address, and web URL.
The integrated Bluetooth technology (version 2.0) allows handsfree communication with a compatible headset as well as the ability to exchange files with another Bluetooth compatible device. And, with the A2DP Bluetooth profile, you can stream your music to a pair of compatible Bluetooth stereo headphones. Additionally, you can connect to your PC using infrared or USB.
The 2-megapixel camera provides several resolution options for either saving for print or sending via MMS messaging. Other features include a 2.5x digital zoom (for use at lower resolutions), panorama multi-shot capabilities, white balance and brightness adjustments, night mode, multiple color effects and frames, and a self-timer. The camcorder function of the camera can shoot in two modes: for as long as you have available memory for saving or a maximum of 45 seconds for sending via email or MMS. Share special moments with T-Mobile’s My Album online sharing as well as the phone’s video blogging capability.
The in-phone media player supports video and audio playback–supported audio formats include MP3 and AAC–and it features playlists as well as shuffle and repeat modes. It also includes a “Music Mode” that shuts down the phone functions so you can listen on an airplane or anytime you don’t want to accept calls. Meanwhile, Digital Mega Bass and stereo widening combine to enhance your listening experience.
The TM506’s built-in aGPS (assisted GPS) navigation capability along with the Telenav application enables you to always know your location get turn-by-turn voice-assisted directions. It also provides the ability to add geotagging information to your photos so you’ll remember where snapshots were taken.
The phone offers a full range of email, text, and multimedia messaging options, including access to personal email viewed through the included Access NetFront web browser. It also supports RSS feeds, allowing you to use your phone to view up-to-the-minute news and other content from selected Web sites and blogs. Just subscribe to the feed and let it come to you.
Other features include:
- Messaging: SMS text, MMS picture and video
- Email: From select POP3 email accounts
- T9 predictive text entry
- USB connectivity with mass storage capability
- Organizational tools: calendar, alarm clock, tasks, notes, timer, stopwatch, calculator
- Compatible with polyphonic and real-music ringtones
- Downloadable Java-based games
- Supports Exchange ActiveSync for synchronizing your Outlook contacts
- Bluetooth version 2.0+EDR with the following profiles: A2DP (stereo music streaming), AVRC (remote control), HFP (hands-free car kits), HSP (communication headsets), BIP (for sending images to another device), DUN (dial-up networking), FTP (file transfer), HID (support for mice or joysticks), OPP (object push for business cards, calendar items, and pictures), PAN (personal area networking), PBA (transfer contacts)
The Sony Ericsson TM506 weighs 3.6 ounces and measures 1.8 x 3.7 x 0.7 inches. Its 950 mAh lithium-polymer battery is rated at up to 9.5 hours of talk time on GSM networks (3.5 hours of talk time using the 3G network), and up to 250 hours of standby time. It runs on the 850/1800/1900 MHz GSM/GPRS/EDGE frequencies as well as 1700/2100 MHz UMTS/HSDPA 3G frequencies.
Those the three main upgrades in store for anyone who previously owned a Curve. While the 8900 is a nice upgrade for sure – RIM still suffers from build issues in the Curve model line. The battery door on mine (and I’ve read elsewhere that others have this too) is loose and has “give” to it when I type (yes, you can solve this by sticking a business card between the battery and door).
I’ve been using the 8900 for a couple weeks now. I also have a BlackBerry Bold (which I prefer for the larger screen and different keypad which I find easier to use).
If you have small hands – the 8900 is a nice phone. It’s size will fit in your palm just right and not be difficult to hold.
In practice I find the control keys (send, end, escape, menu) that are between the screen and the keyboard are difficult (perhaps uncomfortable is a better word) to press. If you don’t press in the right spot – there’s very little give and after a while continued use hurts your finger.
The smaller keyboard on the 8900 is less comfortable for me. I’m using a BlackBerry Bold whose keyboard I prefer because the keys are less pointed on the Bold. This will be a matter of preference – so you should try the 8900 keyboard yourself prior to making a final decision.
In testing the OS on the 8900 is fairly stable. I’ve owned T-Mobile UMA equipped BlackBerry’s before and they all seem to have some tendency to sporadically lock up on incoming calls when on UMA (which is voice and data sent over Wi-Fi). The lock ups don’t happen frequently (maybe once a week at most) – but they’re annoying.
RIM’s latest OS (4.6) has a major lag time when re-booting. I haven’t run a stopwatch against my devices but both the Bold and the 8900 easily run 5 minutes to reboot. Hopefully enough people will complain and RIM will fix this. Earlier models of the BlackBerry had this same reboot lag but I do not remember it being this lengthy.
Overall here’s my BlackBerry 8900 PRO / CON list:
– Uses a much improved BlackBerry OS 4.6.x
– Vastly improved camera of 3.2 mp
– T-Mobile UMA allows calls via Wi-Fi when out of native T-Mobile coverage
– T-Mobile UMA allows data, sms, mms via Wi-Fi
– Re-designed form factor for those needing a smaller phone
– Battery cover has give when pressed during normal use
– Lacks 3G capabilities
– T-Mobile cellular coverage in Northeast (and I believe elsewhere) is the worst of all carriers
– Sporadic lock ups while on UMA
– Smaller screen and keyboard may be too small for some (especially screen)
– Inserting micro-SD card requires removing battery cover (though not battery)
Is this a good phone to buy?
In a word – Yes. I think for the price Amazon offers it (after rebate) you have a hard time finding a better bargain. Given all the pros and cons I think you should zero in on the T-Mobile coverage first and be sure that you’ll be adequately covered in your home usage area.
Also, first time BlackBerry buyers should be aware that there’s a mandatory BlackBerry data plan required to use this phone. I’ve read lots (LOTS) of messages on discussion boards about people trying to get around this and while it seems that some do skirt the data requirement (and be aware that if you buy through Amazon you are required to keep data on your line for a period of time or you can be assessed a penalty) – most find that there’s no good way around a BB plan.
April 13, 2009
the item was delivered on time but it was defective, the n button doesn’t respond as well as the other keys. it’s utterly annoying because my first name begins with n. furthermore, the keyboard isn’t as comfortable as blackberry bold and after a week of use, it lost its rigidness, i started to see this item as a 3 stars item.
so i called tmobile for replacement, i was transferred several times to do the troubleshooting only to find themselves unable to replace the unit. i ended up calling amazon and without asking any nagging question, they just sent me one right away, even a day faster than my purchase shipping method. what an excellent service amazon has, cheap, professional, and satisfying.
the replacement has a more rigid keypad than the first one. no defect at all. furthermore, i started to liking it. it has way more application memory than bold (119 vs 42mb), the design is fantastic, and the screen is way more vivid than the bold especially under the sun.
i have no regret having this blackberry.
i just wish they would make a better keypad for curve series.
April 4, 2017
However, T-Mobile needs to get with the program. Not only did they try to switch my plan from a promotional 1000min/mo to 600min/mo claiming I couldn’t have possibly found such a deal (even though I had the paperwork to prove it), they also tried to get me to send the phone back to Amazon and buy one off them “For free after rebate plus tax”.
Anyway I stuck to my guns and stubbornly refused any service contract other than the one stated on my Amazon invoice. After some quiet mutterings from the in-store manager and a lengthy phone call to T-Mobile headquarters everything went as it should. But what a hassle!
In the end it was worth it though. Anyone who sees my phone is simply floored when I mention the fact that I didn’t pay a dime for it. I’ve got friends with the same model who shelled out hundreds of dollars for it.
The phone gets 5 stars, but I knocked the overall deal down to 4 because of the fuss T-Mobile gave me when I tried to activate this baby. Also their network coverage is sub-par, but it gets the job done. All things considered though this is a great deal!
November 3, 2009