My wife recently got a new cellphone. After having spent hours reading specifications to her, she finally decided on a W980 from SonyEricsson. As far as a “plain” mobile phone goes, this one hits very close to perfect. My first thought when I opened the box (yes, I need to inspect *all* toys 🙂 was “Helllloooo Mr Gadget!”. The W980 is the latest in SonyEricsson’s Walkman-series. It’s a flip-up type construction, which means it’s very nice and small when folded. It features two screens; one is used when the the phone is folded, to notify of new messages, show which song is playing and so on. The larger screen is used when you flip the phone open to actually “use” it.
Unlike some other non-smartphones, the SonyEricsson W980 features some intelligent connectivity in the form of SyncML (allows you to synchronize contacts, calendars, and so on with a remote server), RSS-feeds, and Java. This makes it harder to dismiss the product as a toy or “just a phone”. It does have some “fun” features as well; PictBridge, Camera (3.2mpx) w/support for video, Photoblogging, Radio; obviously, the W980 being a “walkman phone”, it features a great music player. The phone comes with 8GB of internal memory, with no support for an external memory card. Sure, I’d like to have seen 16GB or 32GB of internal memory, or support for an external memory card. But to be fair, 8GB is fairly sufficient for a good mix of tunes.
What makes the SonyEricsson W980 such a nice product can be summarized with one word: BALANCE
It’s small, but not too small. It’s lightweight (100g/3.5oz). It’s flip-up design protects the phone and makes it fit nicely in your pocket. The buttons are just right for people with normal hands. The headphones/handsfree that comes with the phone delivers good-enough sound for a music player. It’s 3G (UMTS and HSDPA), it’s quad-band GSM (use it in most places on the globe).
I think the only “bad” thing about it that I’ve found is the camera. Not that it doesn’t do nice photos, but it’s not 100%.
Go check it our for yourself on SonyEricsson.com