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Sony Ericsson Walkman W902 mobile phone

Image-conscious Walkman phone gets a snappier snapper

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High performance access to file storage

To use this you need to sync the phone with a PC using Sony Ericsson’s supplied Media Manager software to utilise the pre-defined SensMe data. As well as using Media Manager to copy over tracks, you can drag and drop music with the phone plugged in via USB in mass storage mode. Sony Ericsson also supplies in-box a USB Memory Stick Micro card adapter, in case you want to load up cards that way instead, or you can use Bluetooth.

File formats supported on the phone include MP3, MP4, M4A, AAC+,WMA and WAV. With an 8GB card supplied in-box, you have a hefty amount of track storage to be getting on with. Cards slot in to a tray behind the back panel, though this is still hot-swappable. An FM radio function provides more audio entertainment, while TrackID song identification is another stalwart Walkman feature.

Sony Ericsson W902 Walkman mobile phone

The Walkman player’s audio performance is superb for a mobile handset

In fact, the W902 has a familiar set of non-camera features – reprising much of what we’ve seen on a plenty of mid-level Sony Ericsson phones over recent months. Although there’s no GPS inside, Google Maps provides its usual welcome way of finding your way around, searching for places of interest, getting routing information and viewing satellite images. It’s not satnav, but its ability to bring up on a map your approximate position or location you’re headed to can be very useful in unfamiliar places.

Its HSDPA connectivity means web browsing can be a reasonably speedy experience. Again, it’s a familiar Sony Ericsson Access NetFront browser – not iPhone slick by any means, but with a tidier, easier to follow front end than on most non-smartphone devices, with Google search and address bars heading up the options. Pages render fairly quickly, and you can zoom and pan in standard Sony Ericsson fashion. RSS feeds are supported too.

The basic voice calling performance is excellent on this phone, with first-rate sound quality and decent volume levels. Battery life is comparable to other recent mid-tier Sony Ericssons; the manufacturer rates this phone as offering up to 360 hours on standby on 3G networks or 380 hours in GSM coverage, or nine hours' talktime on GSM and four hours on 3G. We found we managed to get a comfortable three days’ standby out of the phone between charges with our average usage, though listening to music regularly will take that down considerably.

Verdict

Apart from the superior camera, the W902 offers a similar spread of mid-tier features and Walkman player functionality as several recent models – so if you’re after a Walkman phone and camerawork isn’t your priority you may prefer a phone with other features, such as GPS on the W760i, or FM transmitter on the W980. Still, the W902 is an attractively designed mobile that handles well, has a fine music player onboard, and comes with a decent amount of out-of-the-box storage.

High performance access to file storage

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Sony Ericsson Walkman W902 mobile phone

Image-conscious Walkman phone gets a snappier snapper with a 5Mp camera appearing on a Sony Ericsson music phone for the first time.
Price: Contract: From free. Pre-pay: n/a. Handset only: £295 RRP

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