I admire Sony's stubbornness. Despite the fact that many phones are choosing to minimize the edges around the screen, trying to occupy the largest amount of percentage of the front of the smartphone with a display, Sony continues to use the same design style that we have seen for 5 or 6 years. years, when line Z was introduced.
Their newest smartphones, the XZ1 (and XZ1 Compact), therefore, do not look like 2017 phones, but rather models brought back from years past.
While the competition looks like this
Sony presents us with a phone like this:
Leaving aside the design issue, which is quite subjective, the phone offers what we can expect from a $ 700 smartphone: Snapdragon 835, 4 GBs of RAM, 64 GBs of Storage. Sony has opted for a 1080p panel on its 5.2 device (and a 720p one on the Compact). I personally have no problem with it, especially if the phones will not be used for VR. Both are panels that offer HDR support. In addition, Sony offers IP68 certification, something that was pioneered.
In essence, a fairly average high-end Android phone (and personally, with a design that seems outdated to me), but that offers two unique features that could make it stand out in this overcrowded market
One of the few premium compact phones
Where one of the phones stands out is that it offers a Premium experience, in a compact body. Despite the enormous success of the iPhone 7, this is still one of the very few compact-sized phones (less than 5) on the market. If we look at the offer of phones on Android, they will find that they are all 5 inches up, with an average size of 5.3.
The XZ1 Compact is Sony's answer to this, offering us a phone with a 4.6 screen, making this one of the most compact phones with Android. So if you were looking for a phone with internal components that would match the higher range phones but still keep a compact size, the XZ1 Compact may be the answer you were looking for.
Cameras with super slow motion
The second differential factor of Sony phones? The camera capable of recording in Super Slow Motion. The phone is capable of capturing up to 960 frames per second, as we saw with the XZ Premium. Implementation is somewhat awkward, as we cannot record several minutes (or seconds) of content in super slow motion. In fact, we have to calculate precisely when we want to activate it, since it will only be activated when we press the button.
In essence, capturing a video at 960 frames per second on Sony phones is more similar to taking a photo, where we have to press the button at the right time for the phone to capture a fraction of the time and present it in slow motion.
In addition to this, Sony is implementing a camera capable of capturing people and objects in 3D, called 3D Scan. The idea is that we can share 3D models of faces, food and objects, to share them on social networks. Sounds like fun, but it also sounds like a gimmick, not a true feature that gets a lot of attention.
They are not bad phones at all. But for the price range at which Sony offers them, it is difficult to justify their purchase against other rivals in the same range as the S8, or even more affordable phones, such as the G6 or P10.
What strikes me the most, personally? Using Android Oreo. This is the first phone to go on sale with Android 8.0 Oreo, in part because Sony offers a fairly clean Android experience compared to other manufacturers.