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Sony Vaio UX180P Micro PC

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Gadgets 2006

Reviewed July 17, 2006 by Lisa Gade, Editor in Chief

Editor's Note: The UX180P is discontinued, as is the UX280P. Read our review of the Sony Vaio UX380N with a gig of RAM, slightly faster CPU and Windows Vista .

A few things are certain: death, taxes and that Sony will release some unbearably cool new piece of technology every year. Last year it was the PSP, this time it's the Vaio UX series. We'll cover the UX180P, which is the US version of Sony's new Micro PC. Shying away from the UMPC (Ultra Mobile PC) design, introduced in late May 2006, Sony decided to do it their way and create yet another highly mobile concept in full Windows XP computing. Indeed, the UX is quite different from the Samsung Q1 UMPC, and bears more similarity (conceptually) to the OQO model 01. Sony perhaps learned from the OQO's shortcomings, thus releasing a more solid, usable machine for $200 less than the model 01's original price. Certainly it's not cheap at $1,799, but we're happy to see any kind of downward price trend in groundbreaking hardware.

Sony Vaio UX180P

So what is a Micro PC? It's Sony's latest creative venture into super-small Windows computing. It honestly makes last year's very interesting and also ground-breaking Sony Vaio U50 / U70 / U750 look pedestrian. It fits in the palms of your hands, runs Windows XP Professional (a sticker on the box says it's Windows Vista-ready), measures just under 6 x 3.74 x 1.27 - 1.5 inches and weighs 1.2 pounds. In the fine Sony tradition, it has everything except the kitchen sink: WiFi 802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth, 10/100 Ethernet, a good selection of ports (some require the included docking station or dongle), a WSVGA touch screen XBRite display, the new Intel Core Solo processor running at 1.2GHz, 512 megs of DDR2 RAM, a fast 533MHz front side bus, an EDGE radio (built-in Sony Ericsson card) locked to Cingular (call Sony to get it unlocked if needed), a backlit thumb keyboard, biometric fingerprint scanner (a must on a device that's small enough to easily lose but powerful enough to carry corporate data) and both front and rear facing cameras. Whew! No wonder this puppy isn't cheap. And it has a touch screen that calibrates much more accurately than the OQO's display (you can use your finger too). And it comes with MS Streets and Trips 2006; just add a Bluetooth GPS and go.

This is the US version which started shipping at the beginning of July. It features a faster CPU than the Japanese UX50 import model and is $400 less than the similarly spec-d import UX90. An EDGE/GPRS radio replaces the UX50 and UX90's CF slot on the UX180P, so you'll need to use a USB card reader or (in Sony's dreams) switch to Memory Stick Duo media. If you have a PSP, that slot is pretty handy though... or a Sony Ericsson camera phone. And it does come with Sony's Image Converter 2.0 Plus should you wish to use the UX to convert videos for PSP playback.

In the Box

Sony includes a nice selection of accessories; a good thing given the price and the usual cost of Sony add-ons. The UX180P comes with a Lithium Ion battery, one small and thin stylus, two replacement mouse navigator covers, wrist strap, padded nylon carry case with belt clip, 5.5" long dongle adapter which has Ethernet, VGA and A/V-out ports, a docking station with power port, A/V out, three USB 2.0 ports, an unpowered FireWire 400 port, VGA and wired 10/100 Ethernet port. As with all Vaio notebooks, restore CDs/DVDs are not included, you must burn them yourself using Sony's included utility and an external CD or DVD burner or buy them from Sony for $20, or rely on the hidden restore partition whenever you need to re-install apps or restore the entire drive. Since the UX has no optical drive, that restore partition is a handy thing. We used a Sony 510UL dual layer DVD burner over FireWire with no problems to make backups and install software.

 

 

Deals and Shopping

 

 

 

 

 

 

included accessories

The UX180P with included accessories

Design and Ergonomics

As you can see, the device is pure eye candy. It's sleek, innovative and incredibly small. It will and does turn heads. You just want to hold it, and the curvy-back with ergonomic grips make it feel really good in hand; even better than the PSP. The UX180P is thick— the thinnest part at the middle measures 1.27" and the hand-grips areas are 1.5". This means it won't fit in your pants pocket unless you're wearing ultra-baggies (and at 1.2 lbs. it just might send your baggies down to your ankles). For those of you who've used the OQO, the Vaio UX is similar in width and height, but is quite a bit thicker.

Sony Vaio UX180P

The left grip incorporates the battery pack. That's the EDGE antenna nestled in the right grip.
The back and left side have air vents up the wazoo, yet it doesn't get uncomfortably hot in hand. It does have a quiet cooling fan which you'll hear from time to time.

Ergonomically, the Vaio is a delight, and that's something I rarely say (the Treo is the only other device to receive that honor). Sony claimed their engineers worked long and hard to make the device eminently usable, and they succeeded (perhaps they borrowed some of the design engineers who make their game controllers and the PSP). It's not just that it feels so good in the hand, but the controls are intuitive and easy to use. Par for the course with Sony, you don't get printed guide that tells you what everything is (that is not a good thing). Use this device for 5 minutes and you've figured out what all the buttons do, and you're enjoying how they lay in just the right places to reach easily and how they improve on the device's overall usability (the good part).

Sony UX180P

What do those controls do? On the left you'll see a larger button up top with a smaller button directly below. These are the left and right click buttons, as on a mouse or trackpad. The textured square control on the top right is your mouse control (two spare textured covers come with the unit). It's pleasant to use, accurate and responsive (even for this lefty). There's an option to have a center press on the mouse button act as a left click, but that's not so easy to use and there's no physical click to let you know when you've pressed it. Since the device has a touch screen which responds to the stylus and your finger, the mouse button is a secondary control.

Just below the mouse button you'll find zoom buttons and on the side a power slider with hold position so it doesn't accidentally power up in your briefcase or purse. Conversely, you can lock it on so you don't accidentally power it off when watching a movie or listening to MP3s. That said, it's pretty hard to accidentally move the power slider when using the UX. A useful scroll button lives below the right/left click buttons. Hold it down while using the mouse to scroll a page rather than move the cursor. And below that you'll find Sony's launcher button which launches (and dismisses) their Application launcher (more on that later). If you press and hold the launcher button, you'll activate Sony's touch command which allows you to do things using on-screen gestures with the stylus. You may customize the buttons as you see fit, should you prefer them to do other things.

bottom

Bottom

in stand

Top

 

The power jack, docking port, 3.5mm stereo out and mic in jacks are on the bottom, and the Memory Stick Pro Duo slot is on the top. The UX180P's single USB 2.0 port is on the left side (more ports are on the docking station), and the camera button (launches the camera app and takes shots) is on the top right side. Given its placement and the device's handheld nature, it feels like a traditional shutter button.

The keyboard... ah. The Sony UX180P has a thumb keyboard (cross a Windows XP tablet with a Sidekick and you've got the idea). No one has been happy about the lack of a keyboard on the UMPC, though you can plug in a USB keyboard or use a Bluetooth wireless keyboard. Score one for Sony. That said, the backlit keyboard has almost no travel and very little tactile feedback. Despite this, I found it fairly easy to type correctly but you don't have the feeling you're getting it right with no feedback. Obviously, the UX is wider than a SideKick , Treo or Cingular 8125. That means those with short thumbs or smaller hands may struggle to reach the middle keys. I have long fingers and have no problems, but others have complained. The blue backlighting turns on when you hit a key and remains on for a few seconds after the last key press. It's bright and easy to see in the dark, though the backlight is fainter toward the edges. Despite its small size, the keyboard has a dedicated number row, Control, Alt and Windows Start Menu keys as well as up/down left and right keys (with embedded page up/page down, home and end functions when you press the Fn key). Everything is in its normal place— no swapped period and comma keys, no strangely located tab key. Good. The only thing missing is a right shift key: the UX180P has only a left shift key which is annoying. Soon you'll discover that Sticky Keys (part of the Windows accessibility features) is your best friend. With Sticky Keys on, you don't need to simultaneously hold down the shift (or Alt or Control) keys and a letter key. Press the shift key, then press the letter you desire (very handy for initial caps in a sentence). The Sony has a caps lock key for those times you want to shout in discussion forums .

size comparison

Size comparison

docking station

Back of the docking station, where most of the ports are located.

 

Horsepower and Performance

Sub-notebooks aren't powerhouses, that we all know. So we don't expect the fastest technology to makes its way into a computer that's less than 1/4 the size of many sub-notebooks. But the Vaio has a few tricks up its sleeve, with a 1.2GHz Intel Core Solo processor that has a generous 2 megs of level 2 cache and a 533MHz front side bus. The Intel U1400 single core processor in the UX180P outperforms Intel' s original Centrino processor of the same clock speed (for example, the CPU in the Sony Vaio TR2A) and outdoes the newer Dothan Pentium M in some tasks. In fact, the UX180P feels a bit peppier than the 1.2GHz Fujitsu P1510d. The Core Solo and Core Duo are Intel's hot new notebook CPUs (actually the single core is also used in the most recent Mac mini line) and they feature fast graphics performance and low power consumption (lower than previous generations of the Pentium M). The processor also runs relatively cool, which is particularly good for a product that one holds in the hand. It's considerably cooler than the OQO model 01, and it never got too hot to hold. The UX180P has lots of air vents keep things cool (top, bottom, back and left side) and a quiet fan. The hard drive is just under the Vaio logo on the back, and the CPU is under the hard drive; so unlike some notebooks, the CPU isn't using the casing itself to dissipate heat.

in docking station

The UX180P in the included docking station.

The Vaio has 512 megs of 400MHz PC-3200 DDR2 RAM that's soldered on. There is no way (unless you're handy with a soldering iron and have no fear of voiding your warranty) to upgrade memory. A shame there's no 1 gig option for power users, but that said, 512 megs generally gets the job done just fine for Internet, MS Office and light graphics work. And the machine handles video playback with aplomb thanks to the Core Solo, Intel 945GM graphics processor and the adequate amount of memory. The hard drive is a 1.8 " 30 gig model which loses about 6 gigs to the recovery partition (curse it if you will, but it just might save you one day on the road when you need to recover an app or restore the entire C drive). That's not a terribly capacious hard drive by 2006 standards, but it's pretty much the same as you'll get in other pint-sized computers like the UMPC and more than the 20 gig Pepper Pad 2 . The Vaio has a "G Sensor" which you can enable to protect the drive from sudden movements (it parks the heads so they don't strike the disc platters). Not a bad idea for a computer that will likely be moved around quite a lot. One of the Japanese UX models features a flash drive for greater durability and even lower power consumption, though that has a high price tag and lesser storage capacity,

Display and Sound

Sony XBrite displays set the standard for brightness, deep blacks and saturated colors made even deeper by a glossy surface that somehow manages to fight glare. The UX180P's display is the zenith of XBrite technology. Yes it's really color saturated, bright and sharp. But even more amazing: it's readable. It seems one step short of impossible to take a widescreen sub-notebook resolution that some have trouble seeing on much larger display and making it work in a scant 4.5" diagonal. The Vaio's display has the same resolution as the Fujitsu P1501d for example, but is about half the size diagonally. And there's yet another challenge: touch screens often don't look quite as good as their insensitive counterparts, but the UX looks as good a regular XBrite (if not better). The display calibrates perfectly unlike the OOQ model 01 and is firm yet responds easily to the touch. Given the high resolution, you'd expect to need a very fine-tipped stylus (like the one included) but a pudgy PDA stylus works fine. Neither notebook nor PDA screens look very good outdoors but the UX180P's display remains visible and readable (much more so than the Samsung Q1). That said, it's still best suited to indoor or shady viewing, though it's visible enough in the car to use as a GPS. Videos look great on the Vaio with no ghosting, great color depth and sharpness. While it's a superb display with very high resolution suitable for viewing DVDs, keep in mind that it is a small display. Personally, I prefer the UMPC's 7" display as a more ideal portable movie machine. But hey, it certainly beats the iPod Video. And unlike the iPod, PSP or PDAs, you need not do any special video conversion— anything you can play on Windows will play on the UX (including iTunes videos if you install iTunes on the Vaio).

Side-to-side scrolling is kept to a minimum at 1024 x 600 and you'll do much less of it compared to the Samsung Q1 (or that ancient 800 x 600 notebook you're still holding on to). Should you prefer portrait orientation, Sony provides a utility to do that quickly (you can even decide which way is up when rotating the display). The zoom in / out buttons are there when something is just too small to read, though they don't do true resolution switching but rather simple screen magnification.

Yes, the display is an absolute marvel, and is the best we've ever seen, beating even the juicy Sony Clie VZ90 with its OLED technology. Yes, it's readable even if you have less than perfect, youthful vision. But common sense does figure in: when taking a notebook display and squeezing it into 4.5", things are small, really small. Don't plan on staring at it for an 8 hour workday unless you've got a big bottle of Visine handy and take frequent breaks. Just because you can read it, that doesn't mean your eyes will love you for it. Plug it into an external monitor if you need to work all day: that's what the included docking station and dongle are for.

Intel's 945GM integrated graphics with 128 megs of shared memory drive the display. For an integrated solution, the 945GM isn't bad, offering 3D acceleration, the ability to drive an external monitor (we tested it with a 20" Samsung LCD at 1600 x 1200 resolution), display mirror, handle extended desktop and more. Working with Photoshop CS2 was pleasant, even when applying filters to 15 meg images and the Vaio can handle gaming, though most recent titles require at least 1024 x 768 resolution, so you'll need to hook it up to a monitor. We did test it with Age of Empires II with expansion pack, since that game supports 800 x 600 and it indeed ran fine on the LCD. In fact it scrolled smoothly and quickly and had no problems running with a full population building and making war. As with other touch screen computers, the stylus is a bit off in Age of Empires II , but not as far off as other machines. The mouse controller and keyboard were welcome additions to keep this RTS playable.

Ageof Empires II

That's Age of Empires II on the UX180P!

Don't expect shaking stereo sound from the built in mono speakers. The computer is small and so is the sound from the built in speakers, though not any worse than several other notebooks we've reviewed. Plug a nice set of headphones into the 3.5mm stereo jack to really enjoy some of Sony's usual excellent sound quality. Since this is Windows, you can play MP3s, AACs and other sound formats easily using Windows Media Player, iTunes or any other Windows app. Likewise, DVD soundtracks sound excellent through headphones. The unit managed to play tunes with the screen off for over 8 hours on a full charge though headphones, so it makes a passable portable MP3 player. The UX has a built-in mic as well as a mic jack, which VoIP fans will welcome.

Networking

Let the acronyms fly: the Vaio has WAN, LAN and PAN, not to mention WiFi. OK, that means it has an integrated Sony Ericsson GSM radio which supports GPRS and EDGE (WAN), wired 10/100 Ethernet (requires the included dongle or docking cradle since those each have a RJ45 port), Bluetooth (personal area networking) and 802.11b/g. The unit has the Intel Pro/Wireless chipset for WiFi, which is a part of Intel's mobile package. It's reliable, comes with good management software and good security support. The Vaio has decent WiFi range, though not as good as full-sized Vaio notebooks. It's on par with the Samsung Q1 and some of the stronger PDAs for signal strength and beats the OQO model 01. Should you need better range when far from an access point you can use Intel's power management software to increase reception (and power consumption, but not by much). Bluetooth behaves well (if such a thing can ever be said) and the Sony uses Toshiba's Bluetooth stack. You can use it with Bluetooth stereo headphones, GPS, mobile phones and PDAs among other things.

The built-in EDGE radio supports both EDGE and the slower GPRS standard. It's strictly for data and there's no software for making voice calls.There's a SIM card slot under a tiny hump on the left side, affixed with a single tiny phillips head screw (the door must be closed securely or the Vaio will complain that the SIM door is open). So yes, you could pop your phone's SIM in there, but by the time you take out your phone's battery, remove the SIM, unscrew the door on the Vaio and pop the SIM in there you could've already checked your email with your BlackBerry or Treo. Life is easier if you can leave the SIM in there, should you plan on frequent EDGE network use. Or use your Bluetooth phone as a wireless modem, though we found we got better download speeds using the EDGE radio rather than Bluetooth. The UX is sold locked to Cingular (odd thought, now even notebooks are locked to cellular providers). But you can call Sony support to get an unlock code should you wish to use another carrier's SIM card in the Vaio. Cingular's connection manager software is pre-installed and is easy to use (though it's an older version than that currently available on Cingular's web site). It comes pre-configured to work with Cingular's data service (ISP.cingular), though you can create your own profile for Cingular's other data service (MEdiaNet, which we tested) and even other carrier's services such as T-Mobile if you've unlocked the EDGE radio. The UX has very good reception on Cingular's network and we got around 145k. Do raise the antenna, it gets you two bars more reception. The UX180P comes with a 30 day Cingular trial, and current Cingular customers get a hefty discount on service.

antenna up
back view

 

Biometric Security

Corporate data seems to end up in the wrong hands daily. Thus we're thrilled to see that Sony included biometric fingerprint security which just might keep our retirement funds, bank accounts and (ahem) personal photos safe. A device this small and powerful is a dangerous thing: it can carry the same sensitive data as any Windows machine, yet it's small enough to be easily lost or left behind. The fingerprint scanner makes security easy: enroll your fingerprints (more than one person can enroll), and use them to log into Windows, store and enter online and local passwords and keep a safe store on your hard drive (a folder that can't be opened without a valid fingerprint). When you visit a web site that requires a log in, Protector Suite QL pops up and asks if you'd like it to store the login info. Say "yes", and the next time you visit that page, swipe your finger to have the login info automatically entered and the page submitted. It all works well, though we found some sites didn't like the automatic page submit, so we used Protector Suite to fill in the login and password, then hit the web page's submit button manually. Logging into Windows is similarly easy: instead of typing in your password, swipe your finger and you're in. The software reads fingerprints quickly and well and you can enroll several fingers, just in case you injure a finger (do enroll more than one; a paper cut could be enough to cause problems). Security is managed at the hardware level by a TouchChip Fingerprint Coprocessor.

Battery Life

We'd all love a computer or even PDA that lasted 8 hours on a charge, especially one this portable. Unfortunately, that's still rare (the much larger Electrovaya Scribbler tablet is one of the few all day machines). The UX consistently exceeded 3 hours on a charge with the WiFi radio on, Bluetooth on only when needed and with 30 minutes of EDGE use (the WiFi radio turns off when EDGE is on). In general, in a mix of web surfing, doing email, working on Word documents, editing a few images with Photoshop and watching several 5 minute movie trailers, the Vaio lasted 3.5 hours. The screen brightness was set to 6 out of 10 (which is pretty bright), the keyboard's backlight was on frequently since I was typing and power settings were at the default (they're not too conservative, I'd opt for stricter settings for general battery powered use). For a machine this powerful, with triple wireless and a physically small battery pack, that's very good. The machine can play a 2 hour movie with power to spare and lasted more than 8 hours as an MP3 player with screen off and music piping out through headphones. Should you need more power, Sony sells spare batteries and an extended battery which increases the size of the right grip.

Thankfully the UX comes with a very compact charger, that's about the same size as the PSP's. Some of Sony's prior subnotebooks have come with absolutely huge chargers that negate the benefits of carrying a small and light machine, so we're thankful for this compact model.

Camera

One camera is never enough. At least not in the days of video conferencing. Thus the UX has a front facing VGA camera whose primary purpose in life is video conferencing (and occasional self-portraits). Like the 1.3MP "Motion Eye" rear-facing camera, it can take photos as well as video. The rear camera is about as good as the average 1.3MP camera phone. Which means colors are sometimes off (skewed toward the magenta and green in the Vaio's case) and the images look best when shot at the highest resolution and then scaled down to 640 x 480 in an image editor. Only one camera operates at a time, so you'll select the one you wish to use when you launch the camera and start shooting photos or video with audio.

sample photo
sample photo

Sample photos taken with the 1.3MP camera , taken at full resolution then resized to fit this page with no additional editing or correction.

Software

In true Sony fashion, you get a boat load of software. The machine runs Windows XP Professional, service pack 2 (no Tablet OS for Sony, they seem allergic). You get the usual bevy of Sony software including Image Converter 2 Plus (handy if you have a PSP and want to convert some videos for it), Vaio Media (Sony's answer to Windows XP Media Center), SonicStage, Vaio Backup and more. In addition you get full versions of Microsoft Works 8.5, Microsoft Streets and Trips 2006 (should you wish to use a GPS with the UX180P, you'll appreciate this), Quicken 2006, Norton Internet Security, PenPlus (lets you draw and write on virtual memo notes), Protector Suite QL for biometric security, WinDVD and more. Sony includes their launcher which reminds me of the one used on the import Sony Clie VZ90. You can use it to quickly adjust volume and brightness, enable/disable the various wireless radios, rotate the screen and switch between internal and external displays. It also has 9 buttons to launch IE, email, Windows Media Player, SonicStage, the camera, Bluetooth settings, open My Documents and run PenPlus. You can configure the 9 buttons and change their label as well as the application they launch.

Compared to the UMPC (Samsung Q1)

I have the Samsung Q1 UMPC. I like it. I have the Sony UX180P. I like it too. I will not tell you one is strictly better than another because their intended usage scenarios are different and because there's a big price gap too. It's hard to fault the UMPC for not having "cool feature x" found on the Sony because it costs $700 less after all. The UMPC makes a great web tablet, ebook reader, multimedia companion and works as a somewhat sluggish regular notebook. Good enough for the web, MS Office work and a little Photoshop. It's easy on the eyes compared to the Sony since it has a 800 x 480 pixel 7 inch display. Icons aren't as tiny; when watching videos, characters in large-cast scenes are bigger and text is larger. Though Microsoft was criticized for setting the UMPC's specs at 800 x 480 resolution, I think that it's a good compromise: most folks can actually see and use the display, even those over 40 . It's a mass market product with mass-market feature promotion— watch videos, listen to MP3s, surf the web, draw, use real Windows and do it without breaking the bank (though UMPCs are still too expensive for mass-market penetration).

The Sony is more of a specialty item, suited to early adopters, those who need serious computing ability most anywhere (and EDGE connectivity), and those who hate carrying 5 to 9 pound notebooks. It's great for sales force automation, IT folks, webmasters and consultants on the go. I seriously doubt that Sony thinks everyone will have one on the coffee table, which is what MS hopes for the UMPC. Not that it doesn't have the multimedia capabilities of the UMPC (it certainly does), but the small screen may not be as pleasing, no matter how sharp and wonderful it looks.

The UX is faster, has a less vulnerable display (by vritue of its smaller size) and comes with a great selection of accessories. Dialog boxes fit on screen (something the UMPC needs some occasional help with). The Sony UX180P has a thumb keyboard, so score one for Sony.

It all comes down to how small you want your computer, how small a screen you can tolerate, how much you hate side-to-side scrolling and how much money you have to spend.

Conclusion

There really isn't anything like the Sony Vaio UX series. The device outlives its hype with gorgeous design, great build quality, an intelligent and usable design, and good performance. Miraculously, the display is readable, even lovely, though you won't want to spend a work day looking at something so small. If you need Windows in your pocket, this is the best option we've seen. If you don't need Windows in your pocket, save money and look elsewhere. One thing is certain, this is a ground-breaking machine; the kind of technology most of us have dreamed of and wondered if and when it would come.

Pro: Sharp display that's one of the best we've seen. The device is pure eye-candy with great build quality as well. Both docking station and dongle included in the package along with a carrying case. Decent performance means you won't be tapping your foot as you wait for the computer to do basic tasks. Triple wireless (WiFi, Bluetooth and EDGE) will keep you connected most anywhere with wired LAN too. The biometric fingerprint scanner is a must on a device like this and works well. While the keyboard isn't an ergonomic delight, it makes the UX180P much more usable and practical. The machine has every currently available feature except a GPS, which you can add. Battery life is reasonable given current technology, though some will cry for more (get the extended battery or a spare if you intend to work all day on the road).

Con: It ain't cheap. Though sharp and readable, the display will tire your eyes after an hour. Keyboard has virtually no tactile feedback. No handwriting recognition included.

Price: $1,799

Web Site: www.sonystyle.com

Shopping: Where to Buy

Display: 1024 x 600 resolution, 32 million colors, 4.5" display. XBrite technology with touch screen. Intel 945GM integrated graphics with 128 megs shared video memory. Can drive an external monitor.

Battery: 2600 mAh Lithium Ion rechargeable. Battery is user replaceable. Extended battery available for purchase.

Performance: Intel Core Solo U1400 processor running at 1.2GHz with 2 megs level 2 cache and 533MHz front side bus. 512 megs of DDR2 PC-3200 RAM. 30 gig, 4200 rpm hard drive.

Size: 5.91 x 3.74 x 1.27 - 1.5 inches. Weight: 1.2 pounds.

Camera: 1.3MP rear facing camera and front VGA camera. Both can take still shots and video with audio.

Audio: Realtek HD Audio, mono speakers, built-in mic, stereo 3.5mm headphone jack and mono mic-in jack.

Networking: Integrated WiFi 802.11a/b/g (Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG) and Bluetooth.

Software: Windows XP Professional, service pack 2. Windows Vista ready. Full versions of MS Works 8.5, Microsoft Streets and Trips 2006, Quicken 2006, WinDVD, Norton Internet Security, Sony Image Converter 2 Plus, Vaio Backup, Sony's SonicStage, Vaio Media, Sony wireless management utility, Protector Suite QL (for the biometric security feature), PenPlus, Vaio Launcher. Trial versions of MS Office 2003 Small Business Edition (60 day trial).

Expansion: 1 Memory Stick Pro Duo slot.

Security: Biometric fingerprint scanner. Protector Suite QL software and TouchChip Fingerprint Coprocessor.

 

 

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