We’ve seen quite a few leaks over the past weeks about Sony’s new ‘superphone’, and quite a lot of it has been right on the money. A 5-inch 1080p-’Reality’ screened beast, packing a 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM, LTE, a 13MP shooter, and it’s waterproof to boot. Do we have a slick, new king of the Androids on our hands?
The phone’s glass is of the Dragon Tail variety, so it should stand up well to abuse, while on-board storage is rated at 16GB, complete with a microSD slot should you need more. It comes packing Android 4.1, so not quite the latest and greatest, but only a .1 behind the curve, and Sony’s promising a swift post-launch update to 4.2. Of course it’s also got Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 and NFC on the connectivity front, and is both dust and waterproof to IP55 and IP57 standards.
The 13MP camera on the back apparently boasts “the fastest shutter speed on the market”, along with HDR video at 1080p thanks to its new Exmore RS mobile sensor. Sony’s saying the end result is effortless amazing photos and video, but we’ll have to wait to see if this is just marketing guff or not. It’s also got a pretty decent 2MP front-facing camera too, for those all-important profile shots, and, err, Skype, I guess.
It’s a not-too-shabby 7.9mm thin, and 146g too, but packs a 2,400mAh battery and Sony’s new ‘Stamina’ mode, which suppresses any Android apps that happen to be running in the background (that don’t need to collect data) extending your battery life by ‘at least four times’, or that’s the idea. Sony’s also pushing Miracast as an open alternative to AirPlay, plus MHL and DLNA, should you want to sling or pull media from somewhere else.
I had a quick hands-on with this thing and can say that it certainly feels a cut above the previous generation of Sony handsets, with a great-looking, premium design aesthetic and solid build quality. Unfortunately the images Sony spat out above don’t really do the thing justice, it looked much better in the flesh. The image-processing tech in the Bravia Engine 2 also worked wonders on video, with great colour saturation and elimination of artefacts, especially with upscaled video, making the best of that gorgeous-looking full-HD ‘Reality Display’.
We’ll have to wait till we get this thing in for a proper test, but it looks like Sony’s finally got a phone to compete with the likes of the Nexus and Galaxy S III, and it’s about time too.