Neither Nokia nor Sony Ericsson has been particularly keen on the slider form factor. Compared to the likes of Samsung, they have merely skimmed the surface of the slider phone market. However, it seems like they're slowly changing their minds and two of their latest phones to adopt the slider style are the Nokia 5300 and the Sony Ericsson W850i.
Both models are pitched at music fans and include dedicated music buttons and expandable memory slots so you can store all your favourite tunes. They're both about the same size and weight, feature cameras and both of them slide, but are these two phones identical? No.
The W850i has 3G connectivity, meaning you can browse the Web and download data faster than you can on the 5300, which only has GPRS connectivity. The W850i also has a secondary VGA camera so you can make video calls and its main camera features a 2-megapixel sensor. The 5300 can't make video calls and it only has a 1.3-megapixel camera.
But before you condemn the 5300 to the depths of mobile hell keep in mind that while it doesn't share all the W850i's features, it does have some of them. It has an FM radio, infrared and Bluetooth connectivity and a colour screen that displays 262,000 colours. It's also probably going to be much cheaper on pay-as-you-go than it's Swedish-Japanese counterpart. The W850i is currently available for free on a monthly contract from the Carphone Warehouse and the 5300 will hopefully be available before Christmas. Expect a full review of both soon.
Update: A full review of the Nokia 5300 is now available. -AL