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Phones.com » Cell Phones » Review of the Sony Ericsson Zylo

It’s been quite a long time since the Sony Ericsson caught the heartbeats of sentimental music lovers. Their Walkman series have been itching to get out of the box of surprises and voilà! Sony introduces two new varieties, the Zylo and Spiro. Two mid-range phones concentrating only on music and media-capable features, the fraternal twins perhaps cease to satiate the taste of document editors and stocky screens.

The Zylo does not stand up to the Aino in features since it is not garnished with functions like
PS3 connectivity et al. However, a Walkman is a virus overtaking you once you are subjected to it. Use it once and you want more of it.

In other words, if your whole soul is inspired by music and you don’t fancy complex gadgets, then the W-Zylo is the right one to grab.

Look, Design, Feel (/10)

Sony Ericsson has stopped caring about the design of their phones amidst most of them molded from the same cast. A slider phone with smoothed edges and a curved back panel, the device is available in three shiny colours: Jazz Black, Chacha Silver, Swing Pink. Whilst the Black and Silver are adorable, the bright-in your face Swing Pink is mostly for teeny boppers. The handset structure is such that it gives you a good grip and the thick back feels nice to hold in your hand. Even the slide glides slickly from one end to another without any wobbling.

The not so light Zylo at 115g when closed doesn’t throw any surprises. It allocates the Walkman logo in its rightful place just below the screen. Below you discover the circular D-pad, 2.6-inch, 240 x 320 resolution screen, and call buttons on the either side. Right below on opposite sides of the D-pad you have two shortcut keys for multimedia apps and a cancel button.

As you push back the screen, the alphanumeric keypad presents itself, assisted by keys that are large and comfortable to press. Expectedly, a dedicated music button is at hand on the right to get a quick snatch of the music player. It doubles up as a camera button; however usable only when the camera is switched on from the menu. The charging and headset jack is also on the right and what irritates us the most is its loyalty to the Sony master. There’s no 3.5mm jack and if you want another headphone, it would have to be another Sony Ericsson pair for sure.

On the back side is the 3.2-megapixel camera covering up as a video recorder. Remove the back case and the regular SIM and microSD card (up to 16GB support) slot is to be seen.

Features (/10)

Nothing’s changed much with the user interface of the Sony Ericsson Zylo. The only tweak has been the optional change to displace or replace the widgets on the home screen. Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Music Genie and Walk Mate are the options although social networking sites will get the most votes. As said earlier the media shortcut key gives access to various widgets and application by either pressing it left or down. It’s a nice of way of keeping up with the applications rather than go through the daily grind.

The phone book stores upto 1000 contacts and 7000 numbers in a simple list and no knitting available with SNS sites. It might not offer the variety, but it offers the count that is optimum. The Zylo also supports push email and threaded messaging with attachments. As typing is a consequence of a traditional keypad, long emails is a forgettable experience.

Talking about the camera, the 3.2-megapixel resolution is not bad to say the least. While this may be true, it fails to click acceptable images. As no flash exists, indoor photos also depend on existing light conditions. The video recorder is dependent on a VGA camera that surprisingly plays quality shoots compared to the images.

Lastly, but of immense importance comes the music part. Zylo is a music phone and that’s what it should be bought for. It runs the latest Walkman version illustrated by its various themes allowing searching for artists, files, playlists and genres. It also makes available the accelerometer feature in the Media Centre along with traditional Sony features such as Clear Audio, MegaBass, TrackID, Stereo widening and Gesture control. Zylo truly stands up from other phones due to FLAC support capable of high quality audio listening. Sony provides headphone in the box, but if want a genuine Walkman experience it is recommended that you buy the latest and better ones available from Sony.

Connectivity (/10)

Zylo is okey-dokey in the connectivity department. GPRS / EDGE and 3G are the two options supported whilst Bluetooth v2.1 with A2DP and USB port play their part of PC connectivity. Wi-Fi is not available, but we are not moaning considering the phone’s price.

Performance (/10)

The battery life is excellent and lasts quite a long time. However, an ample use of the internet, and multimedia applications would topple the battery significantly.

Call quality is not what we expected. Even at max volume we could not hear the voice from the other side and in noisy environments, the situation can turn out to be embarrassing.

From the looks of it seems that the Sony rooted the camera lens just for fun. A passable 3.2-megapixel resolution does no justice without flash and auto focus.

Listening to music is fully enjoyable on the Zylo with loads of features keeping you entertained. Even the audio quality is respectable and most of the file formats are supported. For a music-centered device, the phone fulfills its role sincerely. Being a budget Walkman phone, we guess its price restrains itself from providing certain quality features.

Value for Money (/10)

The Zylo is a mid-range device with enough of music and multimedia features packed in. Its unique FLAC music playback scores brownie points as does its messaging widgets like Facebook and Twitter. However, the lack of USB cable and microSD card is a sin that is not to be forgotten. For a music device, the audio quality is good enough, but does not justify a dutiful Walkman phone. The purchase is worth the price if it was targeted as a media directed device but for a Walkman we cringe from tilting our head in positive. There are superior ones at better prices to be grabbed.

Pros

  • Bright and clear screen
  • Decent cost
  • Easy to set up email settings
  • Feels great to hold
  • FLAC support
  • Good media widgets
  • Threaded SMS conversations

 

Cons

  • Bad camera
  • Misses on certain 'have must' Walkman features
  • No 3.5mm audio jack
  • No standard USB port
  • USB cable and microSD card not available in the box
  • Disappointing call quality

 

Price

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Rating

Style: 8.1
161
Technology: 8.0
159
Efficiency: 8.0
160

Total votes: 338 | Hits: 8579

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