2010 seems to be the year of the Android, and Sony Ericsson is one of the many that's taking that route. Unveiled as an integral part of its Fabulous Five devices during this year's Mobile World Congress, the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 mini is an offshoot of its bigger sibling, the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10.
With the 'mini' term tagged to it, there's no doubt that you'll get a smaller and easier to handle device than the X10's larger 4-inch sized display. However, when we first noticed the X10 mini, we had the impression that Sony Ericsson took 'mini' to be too literal with its 2.55-inch screen and 83 x 50 x 16 mm dimensions. But thanks to that, the X10 mini is possibly one of the smallest Android phones on the market now. In fact, if you have sufficiently large hands, you might even be able to hold the X10 mini, clench your fists and the X10 mini would stay out of sight. Similarly, taking a phone call could be a bit awkward if you aren't used to the phone stretching no further than your ears.
Like its bigger comrade, the three staple buttons are present on the front - Menu, Home and Back, and a matte backing for a non-slip and easy gripping. Thankfully, the buttons are adequately raised for easy access, which also includes the volume and camera button. Oddly, Sony Ericsson chose to flush the power button at the top, which makes it hard to lock the phone with ease.
Beneath the device lies the 3.5mm audio jack and the microUSB port. The latter is hidden by a plastic cover, which became more of a hindrance when it comes to charging and connecting the X10 mini to a PC. We spent more time trying to pry the cover away to reveal the microUSB slot, and it wasn't made any easier if you don't have nails to get a better grip of the plastic cover. Fortunately, removing the battery casing was easier than expected, with a slight grip to the side and pulling the casing away. Once done, you'll notice that the X10 mini's battery is integrated within, hence you won't have the option to insert a backup battery should you be running dry. Other than that, the battery casing should stay closed unless there's a need to swap your SIM card or microSD card.