Specs and review

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The Xperia Z is Sony’s flagship smartphone and one of the most sought after high end smartphones of 2013.  The Sony Xperia Z is seen by many as Sony’s breakthrough into the mobile communications arena after parting ways with Ericsson.  It has ranked highly in almost every smartphone review and ranking site since it was launched, occasionally coming third after Samsung’s Galaxy S4 and HTC’s One, but this is a matter of opinion.

This phone boasts of a 5 inch Full HD 1920 x 1080 pixels screen, the ‘standard’ for high end smartphones of today, a quad-core 1.5 GHz processor and a 13 megapixels rear camera.  Although the screen resolution is the same as HTC’s flagship smartphone the One, its size means more legibility of text and capability to read text on a web page optimized for a desktop screen without zooming in.

Build and Design

The Sony Xperia Z dominates competition when it comes to design and build.  Just like any other Sony electronic device, the Xperia Z is supremely crafted to maintain the device’s 5.47 x 2.80 x 0.31 inches dimensions and only 7.9 mm thickness despite the 5 inch screen.  The 146 grams mass makes it lighter in the pocket.  The device’s back and front sides are covered in glass, which may be fingerprint and oil magnet, but it is easy to clean and less susceptible to scratches.  The edges of the phone are made of polyamide with glass fiber and a whole line of rubber covers for the slots on the sides.  These covers are what make the Xperia Z waterproof and can still work after immersion in water.

However, the masculine design and discrete curves on the edges gives it a unique ‘geeky’ look is also its biggest design drawback as the edges are sharper than usual and may be uncomfortable for some users.

Performance

The hardware features of the Sony Xperia Z are responsible for the phone’s high end ranking.  It comes with a 1.5 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset with Adreno 320 graphics making it the perfect device for gamers and movie watchers.  To complement this chip, the phone has 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB internal memory.  It also has a microSD card slot for memory expansion by up to 64 GB.

Display

This is the most impressive feature of the Xperia Z so far.  The 5 inch Full HD 1080 x 1920 pixels Super AMOLED brings a display density of 441 ppi, giving it a crisper and clearer screen than AMOLED phones.  The phone also features Sony’s Mobile Bravia Engine 2 that corrects multimedia image playback with a 10 finger multitouch capability and a shatter-proof scratch resistant protective glass.

Camera

The camera has a 13.1 megapixels rear camera sensor and a 2 megapixels front camera optimized for video calls and taking ‘selfies’.  The rear camera can take images up to 4128 x 3096 pixels but can only take 3920 x 2940 when Superior mode or HDR Photograph modes are enabled.Bla bla bla bla

Battery

The Xperia Z comes with a 2,330 mAh battery that promises 550 hours on 2G standby and up to 14 hours talk time on 3G.  It also promises to play back music for up to 40 hours in ideal conditions.

Software

Sony Xperia Z comes with a little older version of Android, 4.1.1 Jelly Bean but Sony promises that a 4.2 update will be rolled out soon.  It also comes with Sony’s popular launcher and tons of widgets and Sony’s Walkman music player.

Conclusion

Sony unveiled the Xperia Z during this year’s CES and it sure has performed more impressively than most would have expected.  The convincing design and craftsmanship, high display quality, IP57 dust and water resistance certification and outstanding performance makes it one of the best smartphones you can find today.  However, it has a few issues worth noting including poor display contrast in different viewing angles, slow camera start and inaccurate scrolling of some webpages.

 

Also check our review on Sony Xperia SP, Xperia Z’s lighter version!