Sony Ericsson W595 review: Music on the slide
Location services and knowing your way around
Available for free download and compatible with a variety of mobile OS and Java-enabled handsets, the Google Maps for Mobile come preinstalled on the W595. With Location services you can get help finding your way, view information about your current location and save your favorite locations. To use all features of the Location services internet access is a must.
After defining a start and end location, the possible routes are being calculated with overall guidance, based on the available information in the database. With the GPS Enabler HGE-100, plugged in, Location service gets full GPS functionality, as well as A-GPS for faster satellite lock. This makes it possible to use navigation on the go, with turn-by-turn guidance.
Two different view modes are available - Satellite and Map view. Traffic information is another important feature here. The user interface is nice and intuitive.
With a plugged in GPS receiver, the Status info application displays the current activity in km/h for a 60 minutes period. The GPS connection status is indicated on the second tab of this application.
Of course, saving your most recent routes is as easy as it could be. Within several clicks, a title, description and position is all you need to save a favorite location.
Games are amusing
The Sony Ericsson W595 comes with four preinstalled games - Extreme Air Snowboarding, Guitar Rock Tour, QuadraPop and Racing Fever GT. These games are not exactly new or original but provide enough diversity to keep you entertained for a while.
First up is Extreme Air Snowboarding. It's similar to Tony Hawk's popular skating games but focuses on snowboarding. The aim of the game is simple enough - ride downhill and do as many tricks as you can - the more complex the trick, the more points you get.
Next is Guitar Rock Tour which is, as you can guess from the screenshots below, a clone of Guitar Hero. It's a rhythm game in which you need to press a button at the exact moment when the note slides down to the bottom of the screen.
QuadraPop is the simplest of the four but probably the most entertaining. It is a combination of Tetris and JewelQuest. "Blocks" of two notes fall down, like in Tetris, but you need to get four or more identical notes to next to each other (not necessarily in a line) to make them "pop".
Finally, there's Racing Fever GT. It's a 3D racing game with Career mode or Quick race mode. The graphics are not spectacular but it can kill a spare five minutes.
The Sony Ericsson W595 is clearly a mid-range product and a very capable music phone we might add. Of course, there is still a trade-off to be made when choosing between the Walkman or the Cyber-shot part of the Sony Ericsson portfolio and in this case it's camera auto focus. But we are satisfied with the W595 image quality and have no grudge there.
Unfortunately, at a price point of 200 euro (250 US dollars), the W595 is heavily overpriced and its own siblings such as Sony Ericsson C902 and W760 are also its greatest rivals. And truth be told, the W595 can't really fight back when those two are involved.
So looking forward to better times with more reasonable pricing, we part ways with the Sony Ericsson W595 left with nothing but positive impressions.