BERLIN: SONY HAS UNVEILED what it is calling the "world's first 4K smartphone" as part of the latest Xperia Z5 smartphone line-up.
Announced at the IFA conference in Berlin, Sony's latest smartphone line-up includes the Xperia Z5, the smaller and slightly less powerful Xperia Z5 Compact and the Xperia Z5 Premium, a bigger and beefier model that brings 4K resolution to a smartphone for the first time.
As the predecessor to the Xperia Z3+, the Xperia Z5 has the same IP65/IP68 dust-tight, waterproof design with cap-less USB port, measuring 7.3mm and weighing 154g.
It boasts a 5.2in full HD display, Android 5.0 Lollipop, 3GB RAM and Qualcomm's notorious Snapdragon 810 processor. This is the chip that featured in the Z3+ and was blamed for its overheating problems, which resulted in an unexpectedly low score in our review. Sony is still denying any problems with the Z3+ but promised the Xperia Z5 will not suffer any overheating problems and will offer up to two days of battery life.
The Xperia Z5 also brings Sony's next-generation camera sensor, the larger 1/2.3 Exmor RSTM for mobile with 23MP sensor and F2.0 G Lens. This, Sony says, is the first upgraded sensor the phone series has seen since the Xperia Z1 and will introduce a host of improvements for those snap-happy smartphone users.
The camera improvements aim to relieve three main "pain points" in mobile photo taking. The first is "missed opportunities", which the new camera sensor looks to resolve with a much faster shutter speed than previous versions, promising to be the "world's fastest" auto-focusing smartphone camera at 0.3 seconds.
The second is improving "low quality zoom" with Clear Image Zoom, which Sony says allows users to zoom into an image up to 5x without quality loss. The third is better quality photos in low light, meaning users can capture clearer photos in darker surroundings with less noise and blur.
Another new features in the Xperia Z5 is the addition of a fingerprint sensor on the side. Sony has somehow managed to return the same small size of the power button but added fingerprint technology on top of this so you can unlock the device when you pick it up, without having to then move your hand to a separate button to unlock the screen.
The Sony Xperia Z5 will come in white, graphite black, gold and green options globally from October. Prices have yet to be unveiled but will be in "the premium region", Sony said.
Apart from a slightly different design and bigger and thicker form factor, the Xperia Z5 Premium has all the same features of the Xperia Z5 but is what Sony calls "the world's first 4K smartphone" with a slightly larger 5.5in 4K display made with the firm's Triluminos TV screen tech.
Measuring a slightly thicker 7.8mm, and weighing 180g, there's also a higher capacity 3,430mAh battery on the Xperia Z5 Premium. This is to support the power-hungry 4K screen to power the smartphone for two full days, Sony said.
Other differentiators include Xperia Z5 Premium features such as a larger 32GB internal memory, with the capability to take a 200GB external microSD card, which offers extra room for 4K videos and images.
As with the Xperia Z5, there's no pricing for the device yet but Sony has said it will arrive in chrome, black or gold sometime in November.
The third and final smartphone as part of the new Xperia Z5 series is the smaller Xperia Z5 Compact. This carries the same features as the Xperia Z5, such as the same updated camera sensor and Snapdragon 810 chip, but is actually the thickest of the bunch despite its name at 8.9mm. Nevertheless, the Compact model has a generally smaller form factor owing to a 4.6in 720p HD screen with 1280x720 pixels resolution, as well as a smaller 2700mAh battery and slightly lower RAM offering of 2GB.
The Xperia Z5 Compact will hit the shops in October in the more fun colour options of white, black, yellow, or coral - and guess what: prices have yet to be revealed. µ
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