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Review: Sony Ericsson W580i

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Menus Calls / Contacts Messaging  

Sony Ericsson's menu system continues to evolve, but only slightly. After about 5 years of work, the menu system works well enough that it is only being refined at this stage.

After testing so many other phones, it was pleasant to get to use a visually mature and user-friendly menu system. Menus are snappy - much faster than on past Sony Ericsson models, and the animations are also smoother. Navigation is efficient, often requiring fewer steps to accomplish a task than on many other phones.

Sony Ericsson is the only manufacturer that does not have send and end keys on most their phones. All call functions, as well as navigation, are done with the two soft keys and the back button (in addition to the D-pad, of course).

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The menu system is extremely consistent. Even if applications look different, the menus always work the same way. The left soft key and the select key both trigger the default action, which usually takes you to the next step. The right soft key opens the options menu, and the back key will take you back one step.

There is a key to immediately take you to the Walkman application, as well as a shortcut key that has a number of uses. The shortcut key can quickly take you to new messages, to commonly used functions or to open programs. However the standard menus work so well, I rarely found myself using this key.


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