Sony Mylo Review
Sony Mylo – My Life Online
This is Sony’s latest take on the portable entertainment. I got my hands on mine last Friday.
It is great little device. It has built-in wifi, 2.4″ 65536 color screen with a slide out keyboard and supports variety of audio and video codecs. Along with multimedia capabilities, there is also built-in apps that makes the device more interesting. There is Skype, Yahoo Messenger, Google Talk and Opera Web Browser. At the end of this post, you can see the full specs.
I have been using Mylo on my daily commute and its sound is as good as Ipod so far. I installed a 4Gb memory stick duo, so I got good amount of capacity for music and video. (Its built in flash is 1Gb)
This was the easy part. When you plugin your Mylo through USB, it comes as two drive letters, one for internal, one for Memory Stick Duo. The documentation provides you the directory structure. The music can go under either \PSP\Music or \Music. This is a nice thought, if you are sharing the stick with a PSP, you can put the songs under \PSP\Music folder. I copied my MP3 files and I was ready to go.
The sound quality is good, I tried different headsets. One thing that can be problematic is that you have to use first Sony’s 10 pin headset cable, then attach your headphones.
This makes the cable extra long and also making the device harder to carry. But I manage by cable tieing the 10 pin cable and making it shorter. I have uploaded around 400 songs and have to admit it is much easier to find your songs on a Ipod, not just because of the clickwheel, but also how Ipod lets you browse by categories, like artists. Mylo sorts by artist name and the only way to categorize is via folders. Also going up and down the list can be tedious. I wish they implemented simple UI features, like a keyboard shortcut, hitting T goes to the first artist starting with letter T. Also, while you can skip to a next song, you cannot skip to the previous. And finally, when the device is in its case, it is hard to find the location of the buttons. I wish Sony included a remote control.
I have uploaded some old PSP movies I had converted (they have to be the older format, not the new AVC codec) and they worked like a charm. They were as good as the PSP. I guess Sony has not learned from PSP though, you still have to use the weird directory/file naming structure, like \MP_ROOT\101MNV01\M4V12345.MP4. Good luck managing your videos through your PC, luckily, you can delete them from the Video menu in the device. Controls are similar to PSP, you can fast forward, rewing, pause, zoom, etc.
Mylo comes with 4 major apps. Skype is my favorite one there, as you can make phone calls through it. Too bad they do not use the built-in speaker as a speakerphone, you can either hold the device to your ear or use a headset. The speaker and mic is on the front side, so you have to hold the LCD towards your face. And Mylo is almost as bad as Ipod to attract grease, the shiny plastic gets slick quick. I have installed a screen protector, as I do with almost any portable device with LCD, and it solved the issue for that part at least.
The call quality is really good with Skype and there were no lags, just like the Skype experience on desktop.
I have tried next Google Talk and Yahoo and both are fine, but I primarily use MSN Messenger, so did not spend too much time on them. I know I can add my MSN contacts to Yahoo, but did not do it yet.
Opera is on my next to check out list. I tried different web sites and all rendered fine. I haven’t spent extensive time on it, but it has some great features and is able to render the pages to 320×240 well.
Also for the PC end, Mylo comes with SonicStage and Mylo Utility. Mylo utility is a great tool allowing you to update the firmware, backup/restore data (incl. your settings, music, etc), edit Wireless AP profiles, upload your bookmarks to Mylo and finally edit your personal details (which is visible to your friends that you connect via Ad-Hoc wifi).
The keyboard is very nice, though the keys are little, I found it they are easy to type, even for a quick chat session. There is no backlight though, which can be problematic. Also when keyboard is out, the screen feels shaky, unlike the Pocket PC devices I used with a slide out keyboard.
The button layout is ok, once you get used to especially. Info button quickly gives you information about your running apps and playing song/video. Home takes you to the main menu, whereas Option works like a right click, for example in the Video list, if you click on Option, it will give you options like delete, copy, move, etc. The direction buttons have multiple use, for example when you are playing a song right button works as skip song, but inside the menus, it works to go into the menu. There is also Back, Hold, Volume + and – and at the bottom you can see the rocker to rewind/fast fwd/play/stop.
Mylo is a great device and has lots of promise. I love it and recommend it, if you have the budget.
LCD screen: 2.4” QVGA (320×240), 65,536 colors
Internal memory: 1GB Flash (a portion of which is used for data management functions)
Expansion: Memory Stick Pro Duo™ media Expansion Slot
— DC IN 6 V
— 10 Pin Headphone/Microphone (incl. external Mic adapter with standard mini stereo jack)
— Hi-Speed USB (mini-B)
— Wireless LAN (IEEE 802.11b)
Unit Dimensions: Approx. 4 7/8 × 31/32 × 2 1/2 inches (123 × 23.9 × 63 mm)
Unit Weight: Approx. 5.3 oz (150 g) including battery
AC power adaptor: DC 6 V
Battery: Removable Lithium-Ion Rechargeable Battery 3.7V 1200mAh
Battery operation time:
— Playing music: Up to 45 hours
— Talking: Up to 3.5 hours
— Viewing Web pages: Approx. 7 hours
— Instant Messaging: Yahoo!, Skype, Google
— Internet calling: Skype to Skype, Skype In, Skype Out
— Web Mail Clients: Yahoo!, Google
— Web Browser (Opera)
— Audio player
— Video player
— Photo viewer
— Text Editor
Photo Supported formats: JPEG (DCF 2.0/Exif 2.21 compliant), PNG, BMP
Video Supported codecs: MPEG-4 Advanced Simple Profile
Audio codec: MPEG-4 AAC-LC
File Format: MP4 (Memory Stick Video Format compliant)
Speaker: Built In (For music playback only not speakerphone)
Audio Supported codecs: MP3, ATRAC, WMA (Secured and Un-Secured)
Audio Supported bit rates: MP3: 32 to 320 kbps (supports variable bite rate (VBR)) ATRAC: 48/64/96/128/132/160/192/256/320 kbps WMA: 32 to 320 kbps (supports variable bite rate (VBR))
Audio supported sampling frequencies: MP3: 32/44.1/48 kHz ATRAC: 44.1 kHz WMA: 44.1 kHz