Sony Ericsson W595 in-depth review -

Look and feel

Predominantly made from a smooth plastic, a metallic trim gives the W595 a real distinguished look. It’s available in a host of different colours including Lava Black, Cosmopolitan White and Active Blue.

 

Features

We expected more from the W595’s 3.2-megapixel snapper. Firstly you can only use the zoom facility when shooting in VGA mode. Photographs shot in VGA mode are far inferior to those shot with the aid of multipixels and the W595 is no exception, suffering with each zoom.

 

Ease of use

Once you’ve gone through the motions of setting up a YouTube account (a feature that is exclusive to the operator), each time you finish shooting a video with the W595, you are given the option to upload the video directly to YouTube. Sony Ericsson claims it can take as little as five minutes for your video to appear on the web but concedes that this depends on the amount of traffic YouTube is handling at the time. We are disappointed to find that you are limited to recording your video at a maximum of 15 frames per second.

 

Performance

The playback experience is not great, and the camera is nothing more than average. Sure, the music player impresses and there are plenty of applications, but there are better Sony Ericsson Walkman phones available. 

 

Battery life 

Wit a talktime of 540 minutes and a standby time of 385 hours, the W595's battery life is pretty decent.

 

 Sony Ericsson W595 Review -
3

Review by Sunetra Chakravati,12/12/2011 3:53:25 PM

6

out of 10

Performance

8

out of 5

Look and feel

8

out of 5

Ease of use

6

out of 5

Features

8

out of 5

Battery life

Pros:

Customers of 3 can upload their own videos to YouTube with the press of a button.

Cons:

The 3.2-megapixel camera left us with rather unbalanced shots, and the lack of zoom was frustrating.

The secret of success behind any product range is innovation. Regular improvements and improvisations are key to maintaining a faithful following. The Sony Ericsson Walkman range is one of the most successful and enduring ranges in the mobile phone market. It’s also one of the most crowded currently with 23 Walkman phones available. 3’s exclusive ‘grey jungle’ Sony Ericsson W595 has a novel YouTube uploading application that may just separate it from the crowd.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - look and feel

 

Predominantly made from a smooth plastic, a metallic trim gives the W595 a distinguished look. The device is a slider, much in the same mould as the impressive W760i, although the W595 is marginally thinner. Its sliding mechanism is both smooth and fluid and even when closed it remains fairly svelte. The front of the handset is adorned with your media controls – calling keys, cancel key, shortcuts key and two soft keys – all of which are slightly raised and feel good under the thumb. The same can be said for the numeric keypad, and skipping through  menu options you will be greeted with a slight vibrating response.

 

The left soft key takes you to a list of websites, which it calls your ‘favourites’; however, this is a tad misleading as there doesn’t appear to be any way of editing them. With the inclusion of an array of social networks, coupled with the fact that you can customise your home screen with various ‘urban’ colour schemes, it appears the manufacturer is targeting a younger demographic.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - upload to YouTube

 

As mentioned, customers of operator 3 have the added bonus of being able to upload YouTube videos direct from the handset. Exclusive solely to the operator, once you’ve gone through the motions of setting up a YouTube account, each time you finish shooting a video with the W595, you are given the option to upload the video directly to YouTube. Sony Ericsson claims it can take as little as five minutes for your video to appear on the web but concedes that this depends on the amount of traffic YouTube is handling at the time. We are disappointed to find that you are limited to recording your video at a maximum of 15 frames per second. What’s more, when recording in picture message mode, you will be restricted to recording only up to 24 seconds of footage.

 

Streaming videos via YouTube proved to be fast and seamless, thanks in part to on-board HSDPA speeds. However, we found the picture quality to often be pixelated, and the sound was very quiet. Built-in accelerometers mean you can tilt the phone into a horizontal position and the screen will be instantaneously transformed into landscape view.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - 3.2-megapixel camera

We expected more from the W595’s 3.2-megapixel snapper. Firstly you can only use the zoom facility when shooting in VGA mode. Photographs shot in VGA mode are far inferior to those shot with the aid of multipixels and the W595 is no exception, suffering with each zoom. There was a lack of balance in the shots that we took, with the lighter colours overpowering the darker shades leaving you with often glaring disproportionate photographs. We tried to rectify this issue by doctoring our images with Sony Ericsson’s Photo Fix, but we found this only made the problem worse.

However, we mustn’t be too harsh on the Sony Ericsson W595 in terms of its camera ability, after all it is a fully fledged member of the Walkman family with music at its core and should be judged accordingly. As has become expected from the Sony Ericsson Walkman range, the music player is capable of producing some excellent audio – there is also a 3.5mm headset adapter so you can use your own headphones if you so wish.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - Shake control

 

The W595 features the manufacturer’s shake control facility. On the right-hand side of the handset is a silver coloured Walkman key that needs to be held down when administering a ‘shake’. Flick the phone to the left and you will skip back a track, and flick it to the right to skip to the next track on your selected playlist. Likewise, flick the phone forwards or towards you to change the volume levels, while a shake in all directions will shuffle your entire music collection.

 

Having previously had our reservations regarding shake control, we are coming round to the idea thanks to some improvements made by Sony Ericsson. Firstly, the positioning of the Walkman key is far better than it was on the Sony Ericsson W910i, which awkwardly placed it on the top of the phone. However, we still struggled to adjust the volume levels accurately enough to be fully convinced.

 

Sadly there is not a huge amount of internal memory with a mere 40MB of shared memory; however, Sony Ericsson does include a 2GB MemoryStick Micro card.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - array of applications

 

Sony Ericsson has bundled a huge amount of additional applications into the W595, from the bizarre to the mundane. Walk Mate may appeal to the fitness fanatic, recording your step count; Comeks Strips, as the name suggests enables you to put together your own comic strip storyboard with the option of using your own photos; and Music Mate 5 allows you to form your own one-man band by playing various instruments via the phone’s shake control.

 

Sony Ericsson W595 - the verdict

 

We anticipate the Sony Ericsson W595 to be a popular handset, particularly among the younger generation and 3 customers. It is expertly crafted, and the YouTube uploading application will open the door to hundreds of people who have posted their own videos before. However, the experience just wasn’t smooth enough to warrant top marks. The playback experience is not great, and the camera is nothing more than average. Sure, the music player impresses and there are plenty of applications, but there are better Sony Ericsson Walkman phones available.