Sony Xperia XZ

For the last couple of weeks I have had a new toy to play with, the Xperia XZ, Sony's flagship mobile phone. Ok so toy is probably not the best word to use. For the position I hold, it has been an extremely powerful tool.

The Sony Xperia XZ oozes quality and style right out of the box. Boasting a 5.2inch screen it is big enough, without feeling too big in the hand. The body is made from metal giving it a certain level of sophistication and a well weighted feel. The rounded edges complete a very nice visual package.
Measuring in at 146x72x8.1mm and weighing in at 161g it is one of the smaller flagship smartphones on the market.

With all that said and done just how does it run?


Punching out that speed is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor with 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage and a microSD card slot allowing you to increase your storage by a further 256GB . The Xperia XZ has been released with Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow in Australia, an upgrade to 7.0 Nougat is in the works. The system is unobtrusive and won't require you to re-learn a new interface, especially if you're used to Android.
The 5.2inch LCD screen has a good resolution of 1920x1080pixels making it not as high as some others in the range, however the difference is insignificant, some text may not look quite as sharp to some. The high maximum automatic brightness makes the phone easy to read in the bright Aussie outdoors.

These days your phone is more than just a phone, it is a tool, a link to your social network and a nice and portable camera. The Xperia XZ has a 23MP rear camera to capture high res photos. Its innovative triple image sensor allows you to capture blur-free photos even when your subjects are moving around, much like my energetic toddlers. The 13MP front facing camera is perfect for low light conditions and if you're a selfie perfectionist. Top that off with a video capable of 4k recording and you have one of the best cameras in a smartphone to date.

On  a daily basis I use my phone more than the average person, not only for calls and messages, but emails, pdf's, video conferencing & navigation. Luckily the Xperia XZ's battery life was enough to get me through the day. Its quick charge feature meant I was able to spend less time charging before hitting the road again.

One added feature we are seeing more and more often is the IP rating. The Xperia XZ has a rather high rating of IP65/68 for water and dust penetration. Just remember one very important thing. This feature is designed for "life's" mishaps, not to be tested.

The biggest selling point for me was the inclusion of the PS4 remote play. Living in a house with my wife, two small daughters and only one TV means my want for a gaming downtime is limited. Now I can sit anywhere in range of my WiFi and connect directly to the PS4. Pairing the XZ with the available PS4 Dualshock cradle meant it was just playing the PS4 on a smaller screen with all my usual controls.

A lot of people that have seen me using the Xperia XZ have all asked the same question.

"Should I buy one?"

It is a hard one to answer. The $999 price tag puts the Xperia XZ into the premium market. Its biggest features are the extremely impressive camera and PS4 remote play. Couple that with adaptive battery tech and it is a very safe option. Fear of the unknown will be one thing in people's minds.

The Xperia XZ is a dark horse for Sony in the current smartphone market, but given the size and market share the big two have and the upcoming release of the Google Pixel, I am not sure the XZ will get the position in the market place it deserves. It may well be the best mobile device Sony has produced to date.

For me I am sold, having had just about every version of smart phone currently available I can safely say it was money well spent.

To get a bit of a visual of what I thought about the Xperia XZ from Sony have a look below at my unboxing and video review.

 Pat (Snoogan512/Snoogs)

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