I am the owner of a Sony EricksonE w580i which I am very happy with.
However 2 days ago, out of the blue after sending a text I was faced with the message which I had never seen before. " REPLACE SIM OR WATCH DEMO"
Despite playing the demo several times and taking out and replacing the sim several times, I was faced with the fact that my phone was locked.
On replacing the sim I noticed that it was pushed into position by the battery itself, thats the way it had been set up by the Orange Shop. so it was like on a spring and the battery was pushing it into its working position.
And this is the root of the problem. The sim card has to be pushed home until it clicks into position. I have small fingers and I still could not push it to its fully seated and clicked position with my fingers alone.
eventually I managed to do it using the edge of a small screwdriver, but even then it took several tries before it clicked home. I believe this is a flawed design as it is not easy to do by any means.
And yet using the battery to push the sim to the seated position is the way it was et up for me at point of purchase and this also gave adequate contact for me to get uninterrupted use for several months. But this is NOT correct, the Sim must be clicked and locked into position so it is no longer movable on the spring mechanism.
Once it was clicked home - Hey presto ! like magic, everything worked perfectly, only had to reset the date.
However, and quite worryingly, when I called the Sony Erickson help line befor I found the magic solution, I was advised that to overcome the locked system and to bypass the dreaded message, I needed to go to the Sony Erickson site, go to support and downloads then click on Update your product software/Update Service.
My friendly support advisor said this would overcome the problem but the downside would be that I would lose all my memory ! I would have to start again, Calender, Tasks, Notes, Contacts. everything.
This would have been a heavy price to pay, for a non solution ! Clearly the advice was a shot in the dark from the advisor !
I had already downloaded said updates as a matter of course 2 months ago so I was sceptical of solution that SE had suggested.
No, this problem is mechanical/circuitry. NOT SOFTWARE !
The sim card is not locked home unless clicked, do not depend on battery pressure. Thus the phone when in "battery pressure mode" may have a circuit or a partial circuit, leaving the user at best to be in my situation to get several months of usage, and then kaputt ! as the circuit is lost and the phone thinks it needs re setting up. and it gives the message you can not get past. or the worst case of continual working /non working scenarios, which are linked to the partial contact and partial circuit.
I think this may also be the route cause behind many other of the problems raised on this forum, ie; Phones turning off, or just a red light, or just a slight vibration, or phone behaving like it's dead, or phone locked etc.
(from other posts it appears all the above issues are are further "encouraged" by a low battery charge) which seems to be a separate quality issue altogether.
So at the end of this ramble - the tip is make absolutely sure the sim card is locked home, be patient, you may have to try many times, but it will click home if you use a tool to assist you, (fingers are not enough) and you may well just solve your problems too.
Essentially I think the phone is a very good mid range phone and this design fault may be hugely tainting its performance /likeability.
If Sony Erickson are listening........? they will correct / make easier the sim card clicking action,
They will also instruct the help desk to give out the "clicking the SIM card home" advice.
Rather than the totally useless - download software advice which will do nothing to create a good circuit, but will ensure lose all your information unless backed up somewhere.
And while SE are at it they should also re work the battery life AND the cover panel removal. To get the back panel off is a nightmare and can lead to creating other damage as such excessive forces are required. Not good at all - BAD COVER DESIGN
Good luck to all. (can't do anything for the cracking keys though)