Sony Ericsson W395 review

A cheap new Walkman music phone which gets the job done

TODO alt text

sony ericsson w395

Sony Ericsson's W395 is a likeable budget Walkman handset with a cracking audio performance. Its other features may feel standard issue low budget, and its build may feel a bit plasticky, but it's a straightforward to use no-fuss slider mobile that has some appeal to younger phone buyers - particularly those who want to use those loud speakers to pump out their tunes.

We liked:

The high quality music player performance really pumps up the W395's appeal; it's a chief selling point of any Walkman phone, and the earphones deliver.

Packing in a 1GB Memory Stick Micro card provides enough tune-playing room to get you started, and it's easy to swap cards on the move without fiddling with the back or battery.

The stereo speakers on the back pack quite a punch – they're LOUD, if not particularly subtle – but don't expect much in terms of decent bass.

The camera puts in an adequate performance for an entry-level 2-megapixel shooter, providing decent enough snaps without being stand-out for this class. The user interface overall is also straightforward to operate, and the controls responsive.

We disliked:

Music-wise, that lack of a 3.5mm headphone socket or adaptor, and the positioning of the connector socket on the side of the phone are, once again, disappointing in a Walkman music-orientated handset.

The lack of 3G is naturally going to be a drawback, and the mobile browser experience has a low-grade clunky feel to it. Mobile optimised sites work fine, but its target audience may have higher expectations for the device. Email set-up is too clunky for a phone pitched at this level too; an automated system, as used on Sony Ericsson's more mid-tier phones would be far more user-friendly.

No onboard flash means the camera isn't much use in dark environments, which could be a drawback too for its target audience. And the small, low res display isn't ideal for onscreen content viewing.


Any Walkman phone is asking to be judged on its musical merits, and the budget Sony Ericsson W395 kicks in with a very ear-pleasing music player experience. Sure, there are compromises, and the W395 is far from the most feature-heavy of handsets out there around this sort of price level.

There's plenty more it could have packed in, but as it stands, its key features – including that loud loudspeaker - will have plenty of appeal for its younger target audience who are after a high quality tune-playing mobile that's got enough of the other stuff too.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCellular Phone
Network BandQuad Band
Built-in Memory10 MB
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, HSCSD, EDGE
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 800, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900
Rear Camera Resolution2 Megapixel
Memory Card SupportedMemory Stick Micro (M2)
Phone StyleSlider
ColourDusky Gray
Brand NameSony Mobile
Battery Talk Time8 Hour
Screen Size5.1 cm (2")
Screen Resolution176 x 220
Weight (Approximate)96 g
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), EMS, Email, Instant Messaging
Width47 mm
Depth14.9 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time480 Hour
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product NameW395 Cellular Phone
Screen TypeLCD
Manufacturer Part Number1220-9057
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Boost your favorite tracks through the stereo speakers. The equalizer and the deep bass offer excellent acoustics, no matter how loud you play. Control your music via dedicated keys and the Walkman player. Identify the song with TrackID, then use PlayNow to download. Snap pictures with the 2.0-megapixel camera and enjoy them on the large 2.0" crystal-clear screen. Or share them in an instant through your blog.