Sony Ericsson W880 Review
As far as software is concerned W880 is a typical Sony Ericsson. The new series of the manufacturer does not come with a new user interface, which makes it very similar to the previous models. The musical software Walkman 2.0 is the available upgrade for this type of phones, but there is nothing so special about it really.
The unit’s home-screen displays system information only: level of signal strength/ battery, date, hour, etc. Unlike the Nokia Series 40, Sony Ericsson does not yet dispose of the option to display active information on the screen in stand-by mode, and thus use most of its potential. The four directions of the d-pad are shortcuts to various functions, three of them pre-defined whereas the fourth (right) is left to the user’s choice. In addition you can use the right-side shortcut button as well as the link to the Web browser. There is no Walkman key here like the one in the previous models. Anyway, you will not need such there so long as you have it on the left side.
The appearance of the Start menu can differ depending on the current visual theme you are using. By default the telephone shows the ‘Walkman’ theme with a 3 x 4 grid of animated icons, which is simply reminiscent of the ‘Old School’. Our unit had 2 themes on the card and one – in the built-in memory. Since Flash UI Themes is supported (as with W810), the menu can be replaced trouble-free. Apart from the colors, two of the themes altered the icons of the main menu as well. Perhaps the most interesting of them (though not most convenient) is the one called Citybeat, which turns the main menu into a horizontal list that can only be scrolled left/right. This system provides a lot of choice to personalize and themes are not restricted to color and icon change. They are capable of altering the menu type itself and adding effects like vibration at moving, etc. Unfortunately the sub-menus are hardly changed by the themes; they always appear as a horizontal list with several different tabs.
In the contact list up to 1000 names can be loaded into the phone memory with several numbers each, but the total must not exceed 2500 numbers. Contacts are viewed in a vertical name list without images. There is an option to search by up to several symbols, but only applied to the first name word. This has been our major complaint for quite some time – there is no way to search by family name.
Each contact has a quite a lot of blank lines that are sufficient to fit the necessary information in most cases. Up to five numbers can be entered, but only one of a type (i.e. it is not possible to type two mobile phone numbers); also several e-mails and an address. There is a space for adding text information and one for birth date, which enables you to enter an All Day Event to your calendar. It is a bit inconvenient that it will not inform you of the exact age of the respective person. Each contact can be supplied with its own Caller ID image and Ring ID tone, which can also be a Video file.
Here you will find the standard Sony Ericsson organizer as well. The number of alarms has been increased to five; however, other problematic issues have not been fixed. For example, the days with ascribed events from the calendar are only barely marked in bold and one can hardly tell them from the rest. In the Task menu reminders with an alarm for certain hour can be set and the calculator interface is rather inconvenient. Notes, Timer and Stopwatch are also available. Code Memo is an odd application: in it you can create messages that are not protected by a password – it only serves for decoding them instead. However, anyone – even not knowing the password – can erase them, which makes us think there is little sense in this.
The voice control system is really useless and mediocre. It has to be manually activated and, not being speaker-independent, a voice tag for each name to be dialed must be recorded. While recording (respectively – searching) a voice tag, the unit must be in contact with your ear. First it displays the necessary instructions on the screen and in no time has to be pressed against the ear, so that you can hear the ‘beep’ sound prior to recording the tag. Whether one has performed that right is not registered by sound, which takes another look at the display in order to confirm you have successfully done so.
The telephone features around 16 – 17 Mb in-built user-available memory, which can be increased up to thru a Micro M2 card. We consider this to be a very impractical solution, typical for Sony Ericsson, because this card’s price is higher than that of its analogues and its capacity definitely does not exceed theirs. Fortunately the manufacturer has included a 1 Gb Micro M2 in the sales package. If you wish to replace it with a one of larger memory, there are M2 cards of up to 2 Gb on the market at present.
1. azaas (unregistered)
this phone is desperatelly pretty.I know there are flaws but wich phone doesn't have flaws?Sure it lacks a flash and a miror.Sound quality also is mediocre with the standar headset.But it comes with 1 gb m2 stick,so i guess the money you'll save from buying a mem stick you could use it at buying a better headset. But as i said in the begining if what you're looking for is above all a good looking phone,then that's the one to buy for sure.It's extremelly slim,very light and as a true SE phone very easy to fall in love with...well,at least i have and i'm sure you'll too get there once you get it
2. Milky (unregistered)
I do think you are a tad harsh in this review. Motorola, Samsung and LG phones are far from mainstream yet (IMHO) The only true players are SonyE and Nokia. Nokia's attempt at a functional solid sexy phone are the incredibly expensive Siroco units (8800?) This offering from SonyE is amazing, sexy, solid functional and affordable too. I've read many reviews about it and all seem to give it high regard. I think for the size, what it can achieve is outstanding. I have Java applets running my gmail, my Microsoft Live services, including hotmail. It also supports SYNCML which ties in with your google calendar using GooSync. All in all very useable if you needed email, cal, contacts and web in a sexy but small package. If you want any more functionality while mobile it works splendid with a bluetooth connection and a Palm TX! I say all this as I have just in the past two weeks gone from SonyE P990i, to a O2 XDA Orbit, and now happily rest at the gorgeous W880i and my Palm TX, defo the best choice for Christian Dior's with a techy edge ;-)
3. mully (unregistered)
The sound is compressed, squashed and horrible. and through headphones at full volume just sounds like a muddy mess. A pretty phone but my old W800i sounds infinitely better!!!! Why do SE have to ruin it???!!! Argh. Sending mine back tomorrow.
4. Chez (unregistered)
I been using the W880 for about 6 months now. Its a great phone in my opinion if you use the phone a lot for talking. I really got this for the size and the look. Camera and music player is only average but the screen resolution is pretty good.
5. Sarah Daly (unregistered)
I bought this phone 4 weeks ago and can honestly say I utterly detest it. I will frustratingly, be replacing it with a Nokia or Motorola phone instead. I find the predictive texting a complete pain in comparison to the Motorola SLVR I had been using for the past 12 months or other brands of mobile phones used before this.. It seems archaic and incredible frustrating in this area for a plethora of reasons. Yes it looks good - hence the main reason I chose it. Also the sales assistant sang it's praises on the MP3 player front - which was of no interest to me as I use an I-Pod. However, I have found out of the 7 or so mobiles I have used over the past 10 years, the Sony Ericsson W880, is in my opinion; Useless. The buttons are way too small unless one has the thumbs of a toddler and by the time I've managed to write a reasonable length text, I have restrained myself from frustratingly dumping it in the garbage/throwing it across the room. As someone who has never used a Sony Ericsson phone before, I find the general interface is confusing, complicated and very user-unfriendly.. All in all I would give it a 2 out of 10 - the 2 being awarded purely for the visual design... It may excel as an MPS player but if one is looking for a mobile phone for the purpose of actually telephoning or texting someone - please do yourself a favour and do not buy this attractive lump of muck.