Sony Ericsson W960i
- Versatile interface, impressive camera, 8GB internal memory, excellent music player
- No memory card slot, no built-in 3.5 microphone jack, price, occasionally sluggish interface, erratic predictive text input
The W960i ticks most of the boxes we expect from a good music player, including smart applications, great functionality and oodles of on-board memory. Unfortunately, a few design blunders have left it slightly wanting as a mobile phone.
Price$ 1,099.00 (AUD)
The Sony Ericsson W960i marks yet another entry into the increasingly crowded 'touch screen' mobile phone market. With the Apple iPhone setting its sights on trendy videophiles, and the LG Viewty (KU990) catering to amateur photographers, this latest addition attempts to wow the music-loving demographic. Proudly displaying the Walkman name, the W960i is a 3G-capable smartphone and fully-integrated music player with 8GB of internal memory. A surprisingly solid 3.2-megapixel camera, Opera Web browser, FM radio, plus Bluetooth and WLAN connectivity round out this feature-packed offering.
Unlike some of the other touch screen phones we've looked at, the W960i comes equipped with a full numeric keypad and jog wheel, in addition to its interactive screen. This vastly improves the overall user experience, allowing you to navigate certain menus in any way you see fit. The keypad is quite spacious and should pose no problems during texting (although with that being said, fans of predictive text should brace themselves for some uneven and bizarre behaviour -- so much so, that we often found ourselves keying in each letter at a time). Apart from this one caveat, we were quite pleased with the overall quality of the W960i's interface, which maps everything out in an intelligent and straightforward manner. Similarly, we found the touch screen to be equally responsive when using our fingertips or the included stylus. At 55x16x109mm, the W960i is quite hefty for a mobile phone while retaining a slim width.
First and foremost, the W960i is a music player. As already mentioned, the versatile controls make navigation a dream, allowing you to cycle through track lists and adjust settings effortlessly. As with previous Walkman phones, the W960i offers access to the PlayNow music download service, as well as Track ID; a fun application that lets you record a few seconds of a song with the phone's microphone and then get the title, album and artist name sent back to you. (Naturally, this is particularly helpful when you hear a song on the radio and have no idea who sings it.) If the track is available, you can then download it directly to your phone. Handy.
The W960i's other main claim to fame is its 3.2-megapixel camera. Equipped with a 3x digital zoom and LED flash, it certainly doesn't seem like anything special, yet the photos we took were surprisingly sharp and vibrant. While it falls a long way short of a dedicated compact camera, it will prove more than capable of taking regular happy snaps.
Unfortunately, Sony Ericsson has neglected to include a memory card slot with the W960i, leaving you stuck with the 8GB of on-board memory. While this should be more than enough to satisfy most users (up to 2000 MP3 files can be stored at any one time), it does mean you can't swap and load data on the fly.
For calls, the W960i has a reasonable voice quality, but volume could have been louder, as it is sometimes difficult to hear when there's a lot of background noise. Thankfully, the included headphones go a long way to eliminate this issue -- but this brings us to another problem altogether. Somewhat belligerently, Sony Ericsson has once again refused to equip its phone with a dedicated 3.5mm headphone jack, despite the W960i's musical leanings. Instead, users must make do with a portable adapter which slots into the rear of the device. While audio remains perfectly adequate, it seems like a baffling omission for an MP3 player. (Naturally, Bluetooth headsets are also supported.)
One other problem we noticed with the W960i was a general sense of sluggishness. Certain applications took a lot longer to load than we're used to, and powering up the device took an astonishing 46 seconds. While not a huge issue, this does tend to grate over time, especially if you're an impatient type.
Battery life is rated at three hours of talk time on a HSDPA network and up to 300 hours of standby time; a reasonable result.
Join the newsletter!
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
cloudandco Smart Cane
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
Toys for Boys
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Bose SoundLink Micro
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Xbox One X
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 2 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 3 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Oppo A77 smartphone: Full in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Sony Commences Android 8.0 Oreo Rollout in New Zealand Starting With Flagship Xperia XZ Premium Smartphone Device
- Qualcomm adds security, battery life features to phone chips
- Cygnett’s new wireless charging range has arrived
- Belkin Introduces USB-C 3.1 Express Dock HD
- Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10 Will Come To Australia
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- LG V30+ review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
- Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- Xbox One X review: Brave new world
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTLead Mobile DeveloperNSW
- FTLevel 2 Support Engineer | 12mth FTCOther
- FTBusiness AnalystNSW
- TPProcurement ManagerACT
- CCCommunication and Change ManagerNSW
- TPData AnalystVIC
- CCProduct ManagerACT
- TPBusiness Analyst - Public Sector Health ProgramQLD
- FTSenior Project CoordinatorOther
- FTTechnical Services AdministratorVIC
- TPSenior Project Manager | Service Management I ITILQLD
- CCAxway DeveloperNSW
- TPSAP Technical Data AnalystQLD
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSenior BI ManagerNSW
- FTiOS DeveloperWA
- TPSenior Business AnalystACT
- TPProject ManagerQLD
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- CCLead Pega Systems ArchitectACT
- FTSolution ArchitectNSW
- CCSenior Data Centre Capacity / Facilities Engineer - Large Telco - Sydney CBDNSW
- CCGIS SpecialistNSW