Sony have relaunched their popular Walkman range of phones starting with the release of the new W8 handset. This news will delight music lovers but does the handset offer users any other facilities that will see it compete with the other phones available that offer a multitude of features?

Casting your eyes over the device for the first time you will see the W8 is a phone that is certainly pleasing in the aesthetic sense. Much of this appeal lies in the striking colour schemes that the phone is available in. These finishes contrast perfectly against the phones black fascia with the orange option being particularly nice looking. The other options available are red and azure. Along with the attractive colour another great appeal is the phones compact size. At just 104 grammes the handset is one of the lightest you are likely to find whilst the overall measurements of 99 x 54 x 15mm maintain this compact theme. Occupying the bulk of the phones front panel is the screen which measures 3 inches which is in line with the brands other recent releases which are the Xperia Mini and the Mini Pro. What is very pleasing is that in order to make the small screen easy to use Sony Ericsson have again decided to again use the four corners of the display to house a series of shortcuts keeping the regularly used middle segment clutter free and nice looking. Whatever you are viewing on the screen it is sure to look sharp as the manufacturers have a packed a high quality resolution of 320 x 480 into the relatively small display. On its own this figure may not sound to spectacular, but given the screens compact measurement it results in exceptional quality.

An important thing to remember about the Sony Ericsson W8 is that it is not a handset designed to compete with the high powered smartphones available, it is aimed at people not needing smartphone specification but who require good storage and excellent audio features. Having said this however what does impress is how the manufacturers have enabled this handset to operate using the Android OS. Admittedly the version incorporated here is only the outdated 2.1 edition however it does offer some great functionality that you would not normally expect to find on a feature phone. An excellent example of this is the Timescape UI which is found on some of the makers very top end handsets. This offers some great synchronisation with social networking sites in order to bring you a single timeline informing you of everything that is relevant, from SMS texts to Facebook updates.

If you are looking for a handset with super audio functionality but with modern looks and some great user friendliness then this is the perfect model for you. The colour scheme is eye catching and the inclusion of Android is a definite plus side to the impressive handset.