The wait is finally over! Sony has finally launched their new flagship smartphone – Xperia Z3. The rumors over the past few months suggested it to be quite a boring device but it is actually a pretty interesting smartphone.
Let’s talk about the hardware specifications first. It comes with the same 5.2 inch 1920 x 1080 resolution IPS display with Sony’s Triluminos Display for mobile and X-Reality image enhancement technology. Powering the smartphone is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, clocked at 2.5GHz. There is 3GB RAM and 16GB of internal storage, expandable by a microSD, 20.7MP Exmor RS rear camera, 2.2MP front camera, 3100mAh battery, IP65/68 certified dust and water-resistant, LTE Cat.4 support for up to 150 Mbps download speeds, and Android 4.4.4 KitKat out of the box. The dimensions of the device are 146 x 72 x 7.3mm.
These specs might not sound very different from the Xperia Z2 but actually there are a lot more differences than these specs suggest. The most promising change has to do with the battery life. Sony claims that they have been able to tune all the components of the smartphone to be as efficient as possible to extract the maximum possible battery life. The result of that is said to be a 2 day battery life. That’s right! Sony claims that you can use the Xperia Z3 for two continuous days without having to look for your charger. Even though battery capacity is down by 100mAh over the Xperia Z2, the battery life is said to be quite a lot better. There is also an ultra-stamina mode on board that limits your phone to core functions only like calls and messaging to extract the most out of your battery.
Another area where Sony seems to have concentrated is the camera. You might remember that even though the Xperia Z2 came with a 20.7MP camera, it underperformed as far as the image quality went. Its rivals like the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the LG G3 delivered better results even though they have lower resolution cameras. The Xperia Z3 camera sees some major improvements. The maximum ISO has seen a big jump to ISO12800 now, the highest sensitivity in any smartphone to date. The G Lens has also been upgraded and is now 25mm wide lens (27mm on Z2) that allows you to capture wider shots than before. The camcorder also features a new Intelligent Active Mode which analyzes your movements when shooting a video and minimizes blur and shake from videos. The list of camera apps has also been extended, with more to follow soon.
Even though the display packs the same enhancement technologies and resolution as the Z2, the panel itself is said to be brand new and offers the highest brightness of any Xperia yet according to Sony.A contrast enhancement technology has also been adopted to improve sunlight legibility.
Playstation Remote Play is also a big feature on the Xperia Z3. Sony claims the Xperia Z3 (along with other Z3 products) is the only smartphone in the market that allows you to access your PlayStation 4 games from anywhere in your home using a Wi-Fi network. A separate attachment accessory will help connect the PS4 controller to your Xperia Z3 so you can continue playing your game on it and move around the house.
Audio is another area where Sony has achieved some significant improvements. The noise cancellation feature from the Xperia Z2 is retained but you now get DSEE HX (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) from Sony Walkman devices that allows you to enjoy all your music in the highest possible quality. It also comes with Hi-Res Audio support, letting you enjoy listening to lossless audio files on the go.
Sony has always been the master of good-looking industrial designs, and the Z series line has been testament to that. The Xperia Z3 looks like an evolution of the Xperia Z2 design with much of the same philosophy but with clever new touches being added to make it a more ergonomic smartphone. The bezels have been trimmed and the side bezels are now said to be just 0.2 mm thin. This has allowed the Xperia Z3 to be slightly less wide than its predecessor and at the same time the thickness has reduced from 8.2mm to 7.2mm. Weight has also reduced to 152 grams from 163 grams on the Z2. The materials used are the same though, with double tempered glass and an aluminum frame. The dust and water resistance capabilities have also seen an improvement with the Z3 being IP65/68 certified, it is now water proof up to a depth of 1.5 meters in fresh water.
All Xperia Z3 models appear to be 4G LTE compatible and the handset supports Nano SIM cards. The Xperia Z3 will be available globally this Autumn with pricing details to be revealed at a later stage. Four color options will be offered depending on the market – Black, White, Copper, and Silver Green,
Granted, it might not have the absolute hardware power of the Note 3 but it does seem like a well-rounded smartphone that offers a decent mix of everything. If Sony can price it right, they sure do have a winner in their hands. What are your thoughts on the Xperia Z3?