Not even a year after Mobile World Congress, Sony came out with another Xperia flagship. Back in Barcelona, the company showed the XZ2 handset with haptic feedback, 3D capture and 4K HDR video recording, hoping to impress users from all walks of life. Now, at IFA Berlin, the XZ3 tried less and succeeded more. Sony finally gave users the design they’ve been waiting for and played their strength: HDR technology.
First of all, design. It’s impossible not to notice that the body of the phone has been greatly refined, trying to achieve that balance users are craving for. That translated into an OLED display (finally!), the same 18:9 aspect ratio but with smaller bezels and a slimmer profile. When we looked more closely, we noticed the display ran into the rounded corners of the handset, instead of stopping before it reached them. Also, no notch – Sony Xperia XZ3 clearly caters to those who hate notched smartphones.
Then, X Reality. This new feature apparently allows captured images to be upscaled until they reach near-HDR quality. That’s quite the promise they make, but we’ll have to test the tech in different scenarios to see just how well it does that.
Finally, battery and OS upgrades. This phone is set to go on sale this October 5, making it the first Android flagship to reach customers with Android 9 Pie on board. Google Pixel 3 won’t come out until October 9, so that’s quite the victory for Sony. The “extended” battery life is a relief for most hardcore mobile users.
The Sony Xperia XZ3 will cost $899 in US and £699 in UK. Quite pricey, but at least Amazon offers it with a free pair of Xperia Ear Duo earbuds.