It has been a while since
I’ve reviewed a phone that boasts certain qualities that make it unique
compared to the competition. Maybe
it is the fact that it does not belong to one of the big three phone brands
(Ericsson, Motorola, and Nokia). Maybe
it’s because of its unique appearance. Whatever
it may be, this phone is just different.
Siemens was not the first manufacturer to come up with a MP3 phone – nor is it
the company’s first phone in the market either.
But this is the first Siemens phone that I have managed to review so far,
and I’ve grown to like it quite a bit.
On top of having very neat packaging (the box that the SL45 came in), the phone
itself – with the silvery finishing – has been sized “just right” to fit
in the hands of most people. One
may notice the closeness of the keypad to the base of the phone – which some
may find annoying, or just plain stylish (it’s unique!)
Complementing that is the weight of the phone – at 88 grams, it’s
again “just right” for the SL45 (being lightest is not always best!)
The SL45 uses an orange backlight to illuminate the large LCD screen displaying
up to 5-7 lines (dependent on the size of the font).
For those who find displays on most phones hard to read, because of the
typeface (or font) used, the SL45 will solve this problem for sure.
Reading anything on the screen did not need me to move my hand any
For people who may have used Nokia phones before, trying to get use to how you
navigate with the SL45 requires some getting use to.
With navigational keys very much similar (apart from the addition of a
4-way button), you may need to swap around how you press “menu” and
“names” – because they are on different sides of the screen.
Pressing the button wrongly is normal in the beginning.
Again, time to get used to a new phone.
One unique feature that I praise is the offering of an online help system –
which is something similar to a typical Windows help file.
Within each submenu (for example, messages, surf/fun, etc), there is an
option to activate the help function at the end of the list of options.
This is really useful for people who are trying to get to know the SL45
32MB isn't really all that much - which meant only having a couple of
songs on there."
Some of the functionality of this phone includes profiles, programmable
ringtones, WAP, games, organiser functions (calculator, calendar, appointments),
voice functions (dialling, commands and recording), an MP3 player, and data
storage capability through the provided 32MB (megabytes) SanDisk memory card and
desktop stand (provided with the sales package).
A dynamic phone book is also provided for business card-like entries.
But the highlight of this
phone, of course, is the built-in MP3 player.
Sound quality was good, where this factor is heavily dependent on the
quality of the MP3 file itself. Unfortunately,
32MB isn’t really all that much – which meant only having a couple of songs
on there. Trying to work the player
was easy and accepting calls on listening to your favourite, and personal,
compilation will have the SL45 pause the track and resume it from the same point
after finishing up with a call.
Conversations on the phone are not bad also – with both the phone itself and
the dual headset (provided for the use of both phone and MP3 player) providing
very good audio quality. Talk times achieved on the phone came to approximately 3 hours with around
3-4 days' standby time on average.