10:09 pm - Wednesday July 26, 2017

Sony Xperia Z Review

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Introduction:
Having fallen slightly by the wayside in the recent smartphone stakes, Sony is back with its biggest and best handset to date, the 5-inch Sony Xperia Z.

On paper a true rival to the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S3, Google Nexus 4 and iPhone 5, the Sony Xperia Z runs Google’s Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean OS from the box – although a 4.2 update is already on the cards. Pairing a selection of premium innards with a raft of new, consumer appeasing features, the handset plays host to the likes of an IP57 waterproof coating.

Officially unveiled back at CES 2013 ahead of a late February launch, the ‘Z’ hits the high notes on all fronts, with the Sony Xperia Z specs sheet boasting a veritable what’s-what of high-end innards.

Kicking things off with a 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm processor, the Xperia Z’s zippy CPU is matched up with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, creating a base setup to rival any Android device on the market. Adding a 13.1-megapixel rear-mounted camera, a 2330mAh Lithium-Ion battery and integrated NFC connectivity options, and the Sony Xperia Z quickly stands out as a leader of the smartphone scene.

Despite the handset measuring in at a superbly svelte 7.9mm thick, the Sony Xperia Z screen is an expansive and vibrant 5-inch 1080p Full HD affair, one which benefits from a shatter and scratch resistant coating, 10 finger multitouch compatibility and an inbuilt light sensor.

With a premium price tag to match the premium components, the Sony Xperia Z is available from a selection of leading UK network providers and smartphone retailers, including the likes of Vodafone who are offering the device for free when tied to a £42 per month, 24 month contract. For those not wanting to tether themselves to a two year deal, one that will set them back a hefty £1,008 during that time, the Sony Xperia Z is also available on a SIM-free or PAYG basis from £549.99.

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Though it makes few concessions to ergonomics, the Xperia Z deserves credit for its thinness and minimal bezel — you get the sense that every superfluous millimeter has been shaven off this phone so as to make its size more palatable. Additionally, Sony’s endowed the Xperia Z with a quality that most other mobile manufacturers consider an extravagant extra: water resistance. You can submerge the entire phone in water without doing damage to its precious internals. That necessitates flaps covering every port on the Z, including the headphone jack, but on the balance it’s a trade-off worth making. In fact, if you buy the additional charging dock and make use of Sony’s launch promotion of bundling the Xperia Z with a set of MDR-1 Bluetooth headphones, you might never need to open the phone’s covers after slipping your SIM card in.

Adding to the Z’s ruggedness is a very rigid construction and all-around excellent build quality. It survived a pair of meter-high drops during my review and doesn’t convey the same sense of vulnerability that you might get when handling the aforementioned iPhone 4 / 4S or Nexus 4. Making an all-glass device that’s as durable as its plastic- or metal-shielded competitors is a design feat Sony should be commended for.

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