It's hard work improving on an original, but with the just-announced Xperia Z2 and Z2 Tablet, Sony has more than exceeded last year's blockbusters. Much like Aliens, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Nirvana's Nevermind...or McDonald's chicken McNuggets.
Just what are we referring to? The smartphone (Xperia Z2) records video in 4K with SteadyShot, a technology previously seen on their cameras, which uses motion sensors to counteract the user's shaking hands. It includes Digital Noise Cancellation, the first time that's ever been spied in a smartphone.
Physically, the 5.2-inch phone has softer edges and a narrower body than its predecessor, and the 3200mAh battery inside will keep that beautiful Live Colour LED screen running long-time. Inside, it's packing Qualcomm's latest Snapdragon 801 chipset, which is perfectly aimed at devices that record, play and stream 4K media.
Revealed at CES, the brand new Lifelog Android app records physical movements along with social and entertainment bookmarks -- you can quite literally track everything about your life in a beautiful animation. And graphs! Oh, the graphs.
Xperia Z2 Tablet is the world's slimmest and lightest waterproof tablet; at 6.4mm thick, it still manages to squeeze in all-new S-Force surround sound, an 8MP camera, and 4G connectivity behind the QHD 4.8-inch screen.
With Xperia Z2 and Xperia Z2 Tablet on sale shortly, you have more than enough time to come up with your own reasons why this year's sequels are better than the originals. And with the five kickarse sequels below, they're in good company...
If only it were as simple as pitting Ridley Scott's directorial skills against James Cameron's. Cameron took Scott's horror film and turned the sequel into an action film, though Ripley did a fine job of counteracting that by proving to have a human side when she took the little girl Newt under her wing. And hey, we wouldn't dare argue against Ripley herself, with actor Sigourney Weaver commenting that Aliens made the first film resemble a "cucumber sandwich." Whatever she meant by that...
Snagging all sorts of awards when it was released by Capcom on arcade in 1991 and SNES the following year, Street Fighter II went on to become one of the most influential video games of all time, thanks largely in part to allowing gamers to actually play against one another. Its various characters also had unique fighting ranges and were able to bust moves completely differently to one another. Imagine if gaming had progressed with merely indenti-kit Hadoukens. Shudder.
Sure, Nevermind has the student bar mosh-favourite Smells Like Teen Spirit, but it goes far beyond that opening track, folding in some beautiful soft moments too. Cobain and co polished their earlier efforts from two years prior, for an album that went on to sell six times what their first album Bleach did. It's a more mature effort, one that propelled grunge into the mainstream and cemented Nevermind as not just Nirvana's greatest album, but one of the greatest albums -- full-stop.
Chances are, you saw the viral photo of the "pink slime" McDonalds used to create its delicious McNuggets, made of ammonia-treated lean beef trimmings used to fatten chicken nuggets up on the cheap. The good news is that McDonald's changed the recipe back in 2011, so every drunken bite of those deep-fried morsels now contains actual white meat.
Not only did the second Star Wars (or is that fifth?) introduce characters Yoda and Lando, it had the Battle of Hoth! And Luke lost his hand! (Wait -- is that technically a spoiler?) It was incredibly dark. Oh, and the dude who did the visual effects for all five movies, Mr Dennis Muren, claims it was the most ambitious -- and hardest film to make -- of all of them.
Sequels often are.