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Sony Xperia XZ1 Review !!

By: TWINKLE VARSHNEY | TECH TALK

  Sony releases two flagship smartphones every year, and though that might seem like an oddity, it’s not very different from what several other Android OEMs do. Samsung releases Galaxy S and Galaxy Note flagships roughly six months apart, and LG’s been doing something similar with the G series and the V series.


Both Samsung and LG, however, try and cater to different audiences with their two flagship ranges. Samsung’s Galaxy S series is clearly meant for a mainstream users, while the Note range with its S-Pen stylus and bigger screens targets professionals focussed on productivity. Similarly, while LG’s G series is the flag-bearer of its smartphone range, the V series has recently been used as an opportunity to experiment with different designs and form factors.

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Sony doesn’t seem to have any such philosophy, and its second-half offerings can at best be considered incremental upgrades to each year’s ‘main’ flagship, with minimal changes. It’s no surprise then that the Xperia XZ1 looks virtually identical to the Xperia XZs from the front. This time, however, Sony has done enough to ensure that the Xperia XZ1 feels like a bit of a refresh over its predecessor, even though it lacks the narrow bezels and 16:9 display that became a popular trend in 2017.

Sony Xperia XZ1 specifications, performance, and battery life


The Sony Xperia XZ1 is powered by the Snapdragon 835 SoC - the standard for nearly all Android flagships of this generation, and the only major change in specifications compared to the Xperia XZs. There’s 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, of which around 54.5GB is available for your use out of the box. You can add up to 256GB of storage using a microSD card, though that means you will have to give up on the second SIM. 4G and VoLTE are supported, though LTE can be active on only one SIM at any given time.

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As you’d expect from a phone of this class, we did not experience any issues in terms of day-to-day performance, and benchmark numbers for the Xperia XZ1 were similar to what we’ve seen with other Snapdragon 835-powered phones. Thankfully, the phone does not suffer from the heating issues that plagued the Xperia XZs and the Xperia XZ while recording 4K video or running other processor-intensive tasks. The phone is rated to be IP65/ 68 water- and dust-resistant.


The Xperia XZ1 features stereo speakers that sound good, but had us wishing they were a little bit louder. Like many other Sony phones, this model also supports a bunch of features for audiophiles, such as High-Resolution audio, LDAC-enhanced Bluetooth, aptX, and more.

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Sony is pushing the 3D scanning capabilities of this smartphone as one of its headline features. Using only the primary camera - no dual camera setup here - the preloaded 3D Creator app lets you scan various types of objects: Face, Head, Freeform, and Food; each with a different preset mode of its own within the app. The idea is to let you grab 3D models of different kinds of objects, and then print them from your smartphone if you have access to a 3D printer, which obviously isn’t the case for most people.


You can also use them as 3D avatars on social media, or as AR effects within the Camera app. In practice though, the first step itself is extremely hard, and despite the hand-holding by the app in the form of tutorials - we found 3D scanning to be a big chore. Results were unreliable if we strayed even a little bit from what we were expected to do, which we did all the time thanks to the complexity involved. We asked a couple of other colleagues to test the feature out, and they came back reporting similar experiences.

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The Xperia XZ1 insists on restarting every time you fiddle with your SIMs, a problem that’s existed with Sony phones for quite a while now. We realise this bothers people like us who swap SIMs constantly a whole lot more than regular folks, but, just like the design, this is an area where Sony seems to be stuck in the past.


The Xperia XZ1 has a 2700 mAh battery and we had no trouble going through an entire day with a bit of juice still left at the end. In our HD video loop battery test, the phone lasted 10 hours and 40 minutes before shutting down, which is in line with what you’d expect from a battery of this size. The Xperia XZ1 comes with the Sony UCH12 charger that supports the Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 as well as MediaTek Pump Express 2.0 standards for fast-charging compatible devices. In our testing, the charger topped up the Xperia XZ1’s battery from 0 to 42 percent in 30 minutes, and to 72 percent in another 30 minutes.

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