Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications has delayed the launch of its first 3G mobile broadband phone by several weeks to early January as the Japanese-Swedish joint venture continues interoperability tests with wireless operators.

"The initial plan was to introduce our first 3G phone, the Z1010, in the fourth quarter of 2003 but because of very complex interoperability tests with around 15 mobile phone operators, we've decided to push back the launch date by a few weeks," said Sony Ericsson spokesman Peter Bodor. "We've always said we don't have to be the first to offer a 3G phone. What's important is that the product meets our customers' requirements."

Sony Ericsson has yet to announce the price of the Z1010, which the company announced at the 3GSM World Conference in Cannes, France, earlier this year, Bodor said. "This is a high-end terminal, and the price will reflect that but it's not going to be astronomical," he said.

The clam-shell designed Z1010 has two displays and two cameras. The main display is a full-graphic 65,536-color display, while the second is a four-level gray scale status display located on the front panel of the phone for easy access to information when the phone is closed. Customers can use the integrated camera to snap pictures or record video, which they can send as an MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) text. A second "video call camera" below the main display allows the user to view the party at the other end of the call.

The Z1010 will support 2G (second generation) GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) technologies, as well as the new 3G mobile broadband networks based on WCDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiplex Access) technology.

Customers can upload data at speeds of up to 64Kbit/s and download at speeds up of to 384Kbit/s.