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Sony Ericsson Z300 Review

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The phone has an external round display, which is grayscale unit with white under light. It has two options – to look like an analog clock, or like a digital one, such as while in digital mode it shows indicators for signal strength and battery life. On an incoming call it shows the number that is calling you, and if it is stored in the memory, the name as well. The uncomfortable part to that is the name and number are on one row which scrolls from left to right. That way you can see the number and you have to wait until it shows the name again stored with it. It would be more comfortable if it only showed the name. Suprisingly, when the shell is opened, the display is blank.

Sony Ericsson Z300 Review
Stand-by
Sony Ericsson Z300 Review
Different notifications
Sony Ericsson Z300 Review
When opened


The main display is relatively small, 128x128 pixels STN type showing 65 K colors, with this being an improvement compared to the predecessor, which display only showed 4 K colors with the same resolution. Even with the good sounding of 65 K colors the display looks primeval for today's standards and having that look backed up by the small size. Again, one needs to keep in mind that the model is from the low class and after all is decent, but definitely not the best, since in this price category can be found models with far bigger displays.

Sony Ericsson Z300 Review

When closed it gives you access to two keys – the ones on the side, which are for the sound. Access is a strong statement, since they are hard to reach if you are using the phone with one hand, regardless whether it is the right or the left one. By pressing on then in standby the display lights up, and the clock changes from analog to digital. On an incoming call by pressing down it switches to silent mode and up rejects the call. While opened in a waiting mode they practically have no purpose since they only show status – with other models of the firm the meaningful information which is shown is battery life, while it is not shown here and it only shows the model and the time/date. In the menus is used as navigation up/down, which is done with the 4-way button, and when on a call – adjusts the level of the sound.

Sony Ericsson Z300 Review
the keys on the left side

Opened, the phone has the standard numeric keypad, a 4-way button with one in the middle for selection, answer/reject keys and edit/clear ones all in grey and rounded. The numeric keypad is ugly light up and in an uneven (shaded towards the ends) orange light, which reminds us of the models from the past century, manufactured by the not existing anymore company Siemens Mobile. Although this is a good decision, if compared to the rest of the buttons – there is not lighting at all and using them in a dark environment requires luck entirely. In addition to that, against all logic, the answer & reject keys are on the very top, while with almost every other phone they are right above the keypad, and the system ones are left above them. This for me especially resulted in a large number of mistakes while using the phone, but maybe after longer time of using the phone one can get used to it. The good side of this part of the keypad is that it is raised which allows for the keys to be identified – the numeric keypad is not raised and it is hard to dial without looking at it. The last ones mentioned make definitely unpleasant noises when pressed, while hard and not especially pleasant.

Sony Ericsson Z300 Review
Sony Ericsson Z300 Review

Sadly there are no service lights at all on the phone, to show visually missed events, and checking those requires looking at the screen. For our joy grayscale displays (like the external) are easy to read at almost every light situation, but after all one simple LED light would have done a good job.

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Display128 x 128 pixels STN
Size3.30 x 1.80 x 0.90 inches
(85.5 x 45 x 23 mm)
3.20 oz  (91 g)
Battery900 mAh, 5.5 hours talk time

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