Sony Ericsson W980 First Impressions

W980_2_product_quality_image_1 Straight up: this is a very sexy looking phone. SE call it ?Piano Black?, and it sure does have that deep glossy black look. The screen and buttons on the front are hidden behind a reflective cover and are invisible until they are needed. The clear Perspex block at the bottom of the cover glows with a cool white light when text messages are received.

Flipped open, the W980 looks just as good. Individual round buttons and a large, sharp screen draw the eye.

The walkman experience is good, with the navigation using Sony?s now-standard XrossMediaBar. Finding artists, albums and genres is a cinch.

Menu navigation, SMS, internet, etc. is all standard SE flavor. The addition of a physical keylock switch is nice, especially given the sensitive touch buttons on the front.

Audio output via the included headphones is sublime. Unfortunately the lack of 3.5mm headphone plug means you need to use the giant proprietary headphone adapter (which you?ll note is conveniently left out of any product images). I haven?t yet tried the FM transmitter, but expect it to suck about as badly as any 3rd party FM transmitter.

The ?shake? control is nothing more than a gimmick, but at least they?ve also used the accelerometer for screen orientation.

So, first impressions:

  • Pros: awesome audio, gorgeous looks, and a very useable phone.
  • Cons: headphone adapter, no expandable memory

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