Reviewed: Sony Ericsson Spiro

4 Oct 2010

The Sony Ericsson Spiro is a budget version of Sony’s WALKMAN phone series. While the phone isn’t perfect and is not in the same league as smartphones for music capabilities, for its low cost, it has some great audio features, elevating it above the standard low-end handset.

The Spiro is a light and compact phone. I tried out the Stealth Black version of the phone, which looks rather sleek for a phone at the low end of the market.

It shares many traits with other Sony Ericsson models, particularly the Navi key. It’s used both to navigate through the phone and operate the music player. It also has a button to quickly launch the player.

Flanking the Navi key are the Ericsson’s standard answer call, cancel, shortcut, confirm and hang up buttons. The keypad slides out underneath, and is large enough to avoid texting mistakes.

Using the Sony Ericsson Spiro

The phone is relatively simple to use, however, it does have its puzzling elements. For instance, the applications folder is stowed away under the Organiser section. It’s not an area I would have thought to put it, myself.

The phone has built-in Facebook and Twitter apps, however, internet use is quite limited. It’s a dual band GMS phone, with GPRS and EDGE connectivity – no Wi-Fi or 3G. It’s adequate for checking status updates and reading text, but it’s not great for anything else.

The handset has a 2-megapixel camera built into it. While it has some nice features, such as black and white mode, it doesn’t produce a decent quality image.

The Spiro’s true focus is on its music capabilities. The phone has a music player with Bluetooth connectivity. It can play MP3 and AAC files and the player itself is pretty easy to use. Users can set up playlists quickly and the sound quality is rather good.

It also has an FM radio built in and a 3.5mm jack for listening to it on headphones.

The Spiro features the TrackID app, which, when you record a song to your phone, it can identify it for you, telling you the song, artist and album it came from. Pretty convenient when you hear a song you like and want to look into it.

Sony Ericsson Spiro memory size

A big drawback for this handset is it has a small internal memory of 5 MB. I could only put about two songs onto the player. Granted, it can support up to 16GB on a microSD card, but it’s an extra cost for someone who probably bought the phone because of its low price.

While the handset is not without its flaws, for its low price, the Sony Ericsson Spiro is good value for money. It’s definitely a cut above the average budget phone, thanks to its various music features.

I’d recommend it for users who want to get more out of music with their phones for a low price – though you’d need to take into account the purchase of a microSD card, too.

The Sony Ericsson Spiro is available from O2 in black, Vodafone in black and white, Meteor in black and pink and is also available in Carphone Warehouse outlets for €69.99.