Product: Sony Ericsson Naite 3G mobile phone
As the fella who was labeled a "refusenik" by the New York Times awhile back (where they amped up the drama to "11" for the sake of the article), it may be notable news I've made a soft return to the world of cell phone use, signing up for a pay-as-you-go plan. Sony Ericsson was kind enough to let me test an unlocked 3G model to dip my toes back into the wireless pool with a handset manufactured from recycled plastic and Energy Star V standard compliant specs, with many features that make the Naite a worthy consideration for the casual, non-smartphone customer.
Just to get it out of the way, because we know you're wondering, the "Naite" is pronounced like the sleepwear with an Aussie accent (nigh-tay). The 4.3" long candy bar handset comes inside a cloth sleeve, packaged in a small box designed to reduce cardboard waste, befitting the small size of the handset itself. The Naite is notably manufactured from recycled plastic water bottles and CDs, earning it the GreenHeart moniker. Lightweight, the handset doesn't come off feeling cheap thanks to its ribbed plastic back, designed with enough texture to give the phone understated design flair while also aiding its ergonomics.
The Sony Ericsson Naite in many ways is a refined entry level mobile phone with features and quality that a few years would have made it a top tier handset before the arrival of luxury handsets like the iPhone, Pre, Blackberry and Android, with their plethora of features aimed at power users. But for casual users who use their mobile devices in modest amounts for the core activities of actual phone calls, light texting duty and the occasional Google search, there's little to fault with the Naite. It's the sort of device you don't necessarily show off, but find as a dependable, low cost-moderate feature companion on the go. We like our Naite, strange name and all.
Pros: pocket-friendly design, capable camera, vivid-sharp screen, manufactured with recycled materials, long battery life, solid voice quality
Cons: horrible proprietary power connection, browsing online is only recommended in dire circumstances, included headset seems an afterthought
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.