Sony Ericsson doesn’t always get its handset design right, and this is particularly the case when it comes to the number pad buttons. Often in the past we’ve found these buttons to be too small for comfort. But here, in what has to be the neatest Sony Ericsson handset design we’ve seen for ages, there is no problem. The number pad buttons and the general design of this candybar phone are spot-on.
Overall this is a small mobile at just 104mm tall, 47mm wide and 10mm thick. It weights a mere 78g. It is a featherweight in the pocket but feels solid in the hand. That is always a good trick if you can pull it off, and Sony Ericsson does the job here.
If there is a design let-down it is the Sony Ericsson proprietary headset connector. This has remained unchanged for some while now, and it is a large and clunky piece of plastic that sticks out like a sore thumb from a side edge of this phone. It desperately needs a redesign, and its port needs to be located on the top edge of the handset so that when the phone is in a pocket it feels ergonomic and doesn’t snag the pocket lining.
At least you can use a 3.5mm connector for your own earphones as one is offered just after the supplied headset’s microphone. But given that this is a Walkman-branded mobile, the headset connector styling and location are both really disappointing.
This might be a tiny phone, but it is big on features. The W890i supports 3G with HSDPA and has a front-facing camera for video calling. There is an FM radio to accompany its Walkman music playback features, and you get a 2GB Memory Stick Micro to augment the 28MB of built-in memory.
There is a Web browser that can be pushed into landscape mode to make the most of the 2-inch screen. For the news-hungry there is also an RSS reader. The main camera shoots at resolutions up to 3.2 megapixels. There are higher resolutions available on mobiles, and this handset lacks both flash and self-portrait mirror, but it still shoots a fairly decent photo.
Battery life could be better. We got seven and a half hours of music playback off a full battery charge. To be fair that ought to see most people through even the most musical of days, but it probably means you’ll need to charge this phone daily.
Company: Sony Ericsson
Contact: 08705 237237