Sony Ericsson Xperia Play review

The PlayStation Phone finally lands - but can it live up to the hype?

Sony Ericsson Xperia Play
The definitive Sony Ericsson Xperia Play review

Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.

Sony Ericsson Xperia Play review: Contacts and calling

Contacts are accessed through the icon found by default in the dock and the menu. You can also access the phone dialler, call log and favourites from the menu at the bottom.

Importing our contacts to the phone proved as simple as providing our Google log-in details, and there's a wizard in place to help you get contacts onto the phone in various other ways too.

Sony ericsson xperia play

With your contacts loaded up, you'll see them presented in a fairly standard alphabetical list, which you can filter in a couple of ways, but not reorder.

The presentation of contacts is stylish, if a touch counter-intuitive where it matters. Primarily, it's the main info page for each contact we find awkwardly inconsistent. To send a message, you tap the messaging icon, while making a call means tapping a phone number from the list of possible numbers below.

We'd prefer either clear messaging and call icons in a prominent position, or a menu asking what you'd like to do when you press a number. Ideally, both.

Sony ericsson xperia play

Also, you can't set a number as the primary one, so you'll have to enter a custom field to make differentiating between, say, two mobile numbers easier. When you have a friend with a personal phone and a work one, that's unnecessarily tricky to work out.

Still, the rest of the page is good, and more handy pages are added as information becomes available, showing, say, Facebook statuses or your message history in conversation bubbles, which we liked.

Adding contacts is simple to do from the main list too, with a dedicated button in the top-right of the screen.

Finally, joining duplicate contacts into a single entry is as simple as pressing and holding on one entry and then choosing the appropriate menu option.

We're pleased to say the Xperia Play is very competent in-call too. The dialler is simplistic, with no support for smart dialling, but the big screen does make it easy to key in what you want.

Sony ericsson xperia play

Once we'd established a line, the connection quality was good, and didn't drop at all during our calls. We'd say the volume could stand to go a little higher for those calls when you're fighting inner-city traffic noise, but it's not a big deal.

One thing that's worth noting is that letting the handset speaker drift up and slightly away from your ear during calls will result in dramatically diminishing volume. It's more sensitive than a number of handsets we've used, and a little frustrating.

Speakerphone calls were fine on our end, but the person on the other side of the line did detect a little echo.