"Beautiful phone with great design and quality throughout."4.5 starson by n1020m
Pros: Crystal clear calls, long battery life & good volume,
Cons: Slippery little devil and Bluetooth is not Stereo
Summary: After charging this little beauty and trying it out for the first time, make a trip to Wal*Mart! Go to the electronics department where they have the cellphone cases hanging on plastic cards. Pick one out that fits your phone and take it home. This little phone is a real beauty from just about all aspects including design and fabrication. However, all that high impact plastic and shine makes it feel a little like you are trying to hold on to a wet bar of soap in the shower. So, sooner or later, it is going to take a dive on the street or sidewalk which could leave some scars. Thus, the need for the trip to Wal*Mart. That being said, if it does take a few dives, skips or slides, it is more than up to the task! Solid, sturdy and just about bullet proof construction makes it one of the few phones that actually has a chance to make it through a two year service contract and still work like the day it was first taken out of the box. It might not look new in two years, but I'm sure it has a very good chance to still be working like it did when it was new! A retired Engineer I am, I am!
This phone takes a little time to get used to, however! For one thing, it doesn't have the traditional SEND and END keys, we are all used to, for starting and ending calls. It is a menu driven phone and there are two little function keys at the top left and top right of the keyboard. So, after dialing a number, you will see the word “call” above the left function key, so just hit the left function key instead of a SEND button and away you go! Similarly, when talking on one call, and another one comes in, glance at the menu on the display to learn which button to press. Once you get the knack of it, it is a breeze! Just make sure you have your bifocals on, the first few times you use this phone, so you can see what to do. Without your glasses, you may be overheard saying some bad words while you are trying to figure out what operation should come next, so whisper, don't shout! The learning curve is not very steep and is easily mastered, so don't worry about such a minor hurdle!
When I went shopping for this phone I was forced to select from a very short list. Retired now and having spent several hundred hours flying a single engine airplane where cabin noise levels could probably sterilize mice and also having been involved in competition shooting for a number of years have made these old ears take on a pretty good handicap. So, for starters, I needed something that had good volume at the ear piece. In addition, I needed something that would give me a minimum of five(5) hours of actual talk time and a long standby time. If I leave the phone on and toss it in the glove box for a week, I still want for it to be capable of squeezing out another 20 minutes of emergency phone calls. This little phone wins on both of these battle fronts! I use it with the volume cranked all the way up and it is just fine for me. However, when I hand it to my wife, so she can talk to the grandchildren, well, it's kind of like that commercial for that personal listing device on TV, “Do you really have to have this thing so loud”! You get the picture! The volume is just fine, for me, the half deaf one and should be good enough for just about everyone else too.
I also like to listen to music, so the first thing I did was order a 1 Gig Micro M2 Sony Memory Stick. 1 Gig is the maximum this phone will take, but for me, that is just fine! Then I went to the Sony Ericsson site and downloaded their software package, for free, which allows your computer to transfer music, among other things, to and from your phone. I transferred 13 of my favorite CDs onto the 1 Gig memory stick, and I would estimate that it will probably hold about 10 or 11 more CD s just like it. That should be enough for me on my trips to see the kids and grandchildren. Oh, by the way, you can also transfer photos to and from your phone over the USB port or the infrared (IrDA) port. This makes it easy to setup our Caller ID files with pictures you have already taken. My last phone/carrier made you send everything back and forth over their network to squeeze every last drop of revenue they could out of you. I am very pleased with the Walkman capability.
I read one review that dinged the ear buds for not fitting properly. That person must have had some weird shaped ear canals, as I found that they fit quite nicely and were very comfortable. Besides, Sony Ericsson supplies three(3) sets of ear bud cover tips, small, medium, and large, which should provide a good fit to just about anyone! I listen to the Walkman at night, while in bed, and have no difficulty lying with one ear against the pillow with no discomfort whatsoever. The wires to the ear buds have a short connection to the left ear and a long connection to the right ear. This allows you to route the longer one behind your neck to the right ear and keep the wires out of your way. It also helps when putting them on in the dark.
Bluetooth capability is unsurpassed, but is not stereo! I suspect it supports Bluetooth Version 2.0 because I paired it to a Motorola H700 headset and all functions work as stated and all have been tested. The H700 is a 2.0 device, so I am assuming the W300i Walkman has 2.0 capability also. However, the documentation does not specify what level of Bluetooth is supported. But then, the Motorola H700 is backwards compatible to earlier versions, so who knows! I just know that all the functions and capabilities specified for the H700 work as stated, included voice dialing. The W300i Walkman phone paired with the H700 in about 10 seconds and I have been using it pretty much constantly since setup was complete. One reason for its constant use is that the ear piece volume from the H700 is even better than that from the W300i Walkman, so this half deaf person is in seventh heaven. I can hear again! Yea!
The call quality is phenomenal, period! I'm sure that this has a lot to do with the GSM network as opposed to my old carrier which used a CDMA network. Everyone I have called has reported crystal clear and loud voice quality, with no interference, and the same is true at my end of the conversation. The battery provides a good solid five(5) hours plus, of talk time, using Bluetooth most of the time and still allows time to listen to music. For the way I use a phone, I really can't complain about any of its functionality, only the slippery feel. But then, one should be able to overlook that! After all, it provides an excuse to make an extra trip to Wal*Mart and, in addition, it is a great looking phone and just about everyone wants to look it over and try it out. You will not be disappointed!