We've just been playing with Sony Ericsson's latest Walkman -- the W995 -- and have confirmed our predictions: this is the best Walkman phone in the company's history.
To recap from our previous report, the W995 features an 8.1-megapixel camera with autofocus, a 66mm (2.6-inch) 240x320-pixel screen, GPS, Wi-Fi, Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync support, an 8GB Memory Stick Micro M2 card and stereo Bluetooth.
But it's also got the one thing we've been waiting for: a real 3.5mm headphone socket. It's up on the top of the handset, and we've got pictures on the next few pages. The usual proprietary USB socket is still on the side of the phone, but for data transfer only.
In the ol' hand, the W995 feels meaty, solid and well-built -- like the C905, only not quite as chunky. The keypad feels good for speed texting, and the dedicated Walkman controls on the right-hand side are easy to control with one hand.
The usual Sony Ericsson interface makes it an easy phone to browse, with the black and silver media player menus as simple as ever.
Honestly, this is a music phone to get excited about. It'll be out in the second quarter of this year, and if you've been waiting for the perfect Sony Ericsson to upgrade to this summer, the W995 is the one to be holding out for. Check out our gallery of hands-on pictures over the next few pages.
The keypad looks a little small, and it is. But it felt decent to use when we tried it out.
The dedicated Walkman controls can be found on the right-hand side of the W995, and are easily within thumb's reach.
Look! A real 3.5mm headphone socket! Finally. No more crappy adapters.
The old USB port is left intact, but is now only used for data transfer, not headphone connectivity.