The W850i is Sony Ericsson's first slider phone and while it's not the most graceful spring-assisted action we've seen, it's responsive nonetheless. The handset is nice and compact.
The Sony Ericsson W850i runs version 2.0 of the Walkman player with enhanced music management features. Elsewhere there's a two-megapixel camera, 3G, video calling, expandable memory and Bluetooth.
Our prototype model of the Sony Ericsson W850i had a stiff, unresponsive joypad and loose soft keys. The Sony Ericsson user interface is a smooth, lucid experience as always.
The Walkman name is done justice by the Sony Ericsson W850i. Music sounds great through the supplied headphones, and better if you plug in a pair of quality cans. Photos come out well enough, and video calls have good, clear audio through the phone's speakers.
The 225 minutes of talktime offered by the Sony Ericsson W850i doesn't rank with the best, but should last you a fair while.
Review by Sunetra Chakravati,12/12/2011 3:48:46 PM
Look and feel
Ease of use
The new Walkman 2.0 player has some cool new features to take the mobile music experience to the next level.
The navigation controls are a bit temperamental while the slide action, although responsive, sounds clunky.
The Sony Ericsson W850i is the first Walkman phone to carry version 2.0 of the Walkman software. It's also Sony Ericsson's first slide phone. As such, it's a lot more compact, resembling the Nokia 6280 in size and weight.
To add to the new image, the navigation pad blends into the phone. It looks cool, but useability seems to have suffered. Our review sample was a prototype so perhaps all the kinks haven't been ironed out, but we found the joypad keys unresponsive and stiff. At the other end of the scale, the rest of the soft and dedicated feature keys felt loose. Play before you pay.The user interface is a lucid as usual so newcomers won't struggle, while the two-inch screen ranks alongside the K800i for fantastic definition and brightness.
As a 3G phone the Sony Ericsson W850i has two-way video calling capabilities. The inevitable pixelation and drag appear but it isn't too shabby. As with most Walkman phones, the strong built-in speaker redeems its performance. Conversation is distinct through the rear speaker so you won't need the headphones.A rear two-megapixel camera lens shoots photos in a maximum 1600x1200-pixel resolution. There's no auto-focus but merit points are clawed back with a built-in LED light that works okay in low-level environments. The snaps are decent quality but can appear a little washed out compared to other camera phones.
For storing your tunes and multimedia gubbins, the Sony Ericsson W850i has a MemoryStick ProDuo card slot.All in all, the Sony Ericsson W850i lacks the same allure as previous Walkers like the W810i. It's by no means a disappointment, perhaps just a little underwhelming. Perhaps the tantalizing thought of the upcoming 4GB flash memory-toting W950i is nagging at the back of our minds and this is the next Walkman phone we're really getting excited about.