Sanyo Katana II Review

Introduction, Design and Software
The Sanyo Katana-II is an update to the original Katana, which was introduced by Sprint last year. Even though the features have remained the same, the Katana-II has been redesigned to be more fashionable and pleasing to the eye. The Katana-II is considered an entry-level phone and lacks some of the more advanced features of the Katana DLX, such as a MicroSD card slot. It is targeted to consumers that are looking for a basic cell phone, such as teens, without spending a lot of money. The retail package includes the Katana-II phone, 820mAh battery, wall charger, and user manual.


Despite the phone not being a higher end model, the overall plastic construction feels sturdy and well made, unlike the Razr V3m, and is available in a choice of three colors (Black, Pink, and Midnight Steel). When opening the flip, the hinge feels secure and clicks into place.

The external display is a small 128x160 pixel 65K Color TFT, which is only large enough to see the status icons along with the date & time. The internal screen is a much larger 240x320 pixel 65K color QVGA TFT, which displays images and text with good quality and color. Unfortunately, both screens are difficult to view while in direct sunlight. The blue-backlit keypad is laid out well, with large buttons and adequate space between them. We had no problems using the navigational pad to select menu options, while the numeric keys are easy to use for dialing and text messaging. The buttons provide a good “click” when pressed, but they are made out of smooth plastic, which provides no tactile feel to the surface. Because of this, dialing by touch alone can be challenging.

ModelDimension (Inches)Dimension (mm)Weight (oz)Weight (Gramms)
Sanyo Katana II3.70" x 1.90" x 0.60"94 x 48 x 153.1088
Sanyo Katana DLX3.70" x 1.90" x 0.60"94 x 48 x 153.5092.2
Sanyo Katana3.88" x 2.02" x 0.58"98.5 x 51 x 153,4096

Software / Features:

The main menu is categorized into nine sections (Call History, Messaging, Tools, Web, Missed Alerts, Contacts, Pictures, My Content, and Settings), and it is easy to navigate between them. The interface works well, is fast and responsive; yet is it not as customizable as the DLX.

The Phonebook is only capable of storing up to 300 contacts, which is less than some other phones allow. Adding a phonebook entry is simple, with each contact allowing you to enter in the name, 7 numbers, 2 E-Mail addresses, web site, group, ringtone, street address, memo, and picture. Ringer ID and Picture ID is useful and fun way for identifying callers.

A basic VGA camera is built into the phone, but the quality of the images are poor and lacking in detail and accurate color representation. The pricier Katana DLX does capture better quality images, however neither phone is going to replace a standard digital camera.

Sample images:

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