Sony Xperia XZ1 Review- Xperia Got Smarter in the Same Chocolate-bar Construction

Highlights

Rs. 44,598

Pros

    • Handy form factor
    • Swift performance
    • Fantastic camera
    • Decent Battery Life
    • Receives Regular Updates
    • Loud Audio Output

Cons

    • Broad bezels around the display
    • Slippery rear surface
    • Low light camera performance isn’t upto the mark

Sony is making giant leaps in smartphone industry yet again by offering the latest specs, a brilliant camera, long battery life and a premium form factor in its smartphones. The latest Sony Xperia XZ1 once again comes in the same construction, single camera and broad-bezel design.
  • Review

Introduction

2017 has been one of the most happening years for Sony in India. The company announced loads of devices including smartphones, cameras, speakers, and the much famed Sony Xperia XZ Premium packing the latest Qualcomm chipset prior to any other handset maker with the latest OS in the Indian market. Sony also announced its another flagship handset recently, the Sony Xperia XZ1 in India once again boasting the latest set of features in its customary bar design.

The latest Sony Xperia XZ1 comes with a 5.2-inch touchscreen display offering a Full HD (1080x1920pixels) resolution. The smartphone is powered by a 2.3GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC with 4GB of RAM. The handset comes with 64GB of storage with option to further expand it via a hybrid micro SD card slot. As far as optics are concerned, the Sony Xperia XZ1 packs a 19-megapixel primary camera on the rear and a 13-megapixel camera at the front for selfies.

The Sony Xperia XZ1 runs on Android 8.0 Oreo backed by a 2700mAh non removable battery. The phone measures 155.00 x 75.00 x 8.70 (height x width x thickness) in dimensions and weighs about 190.00grams.

The dual-sim phone Xperia XZ1 sports dual Nano-SIM cards and the connectivity options on the phone includes Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, Headphones, 3G and 4G. Sensors include Proximity sensor, Accelerometer and Ambient light sensor.

Sony is also doing pretty much everything in the smartphone industry that the company can, still the results aren’t pretty much paying-off.

Sony’s Customary Bar Design

Every premium Sony smartphone comes in a similar sized form factor, the design of the phone in any case looks the same, and only if you’re a tech geek you could distinguish the difference between the Xperia phones.

Sony Xperia XZ1 smartphone

The Sony Xperia XZ1 comes in a boxy looking rectangular design which looks and feels the same just like the earlier launched Xperia XZ premium (except with no shiny surfaces). Sony has updated the design on the Xperia XZ1 slightly with an infinite loop design that company implemented last year. It now extends to the top and at bottom of the handset, due to which the phone cannot stand vertically on a flat surface.

Sony Xperia XZ1 features

The Sony Xperia XZ1 features a 5.2-inch touchscreen display at the front and have thick bezels all around it. The bezels are thicker at the top and at the bottom. The front side not only incorporates the display but also packs a set of dual speakers at the top and bottom.

Sony Xperia XZ1 display panel

The display panel on the phone uses Sony’s home brewed TRILUMINOUS technology that even with its FHD resolution never disappoints in any lighting condition.

sony xperia xz1 feels premium

In contrast to front, the Rear panel on the Xperia XZ1 feels premium and sturdy. Even though it gives an impressive finish to the handset, the device feels slippery in hand due to its smooth surface. However, you can use the phone with a single hand without troubling much.

Along the sides of the smartphone, the Sony Xperia XZ1 packs volume rockers, and power lock/unlock key with embedded fingerprint sensor. While the other side of the smartphone packs the SIM card tray. At the bottom, there’s a USB Type-C port for charging and data syncing adjacent to a tiny hole for calling microphone.

Ejecting the Sim card tray is another major task that you need to perform in case you’re a Dual SIM card user like most of us. After removing the tray out of the phone you’ll additionally have to separate the plastic tray with the help of your fingernail to insert the second SIM.

In comparison to companies like Samsung, Apple, LG and other phones makers, Sony didn’t opt the same design. The company isn’t moving to a bezel-less design or the dual camera sensors, and the phones look same like their predecessors and somewhat stale. And just like the other Sony flagship phones, the Xperia XZ1 is also IP65/68 certified, meaning it’s fully dust and water resistant, while also being able to survive a dunk in the bucket.

Sony Xperia XZ1 – Performance

Let’s start with the display on the Sony Xperia XZ1 first. The Sony Xperia XZ1 features a 5.2-inch screen which is marginally smaller than what other major flagships are offering. However, the display feels easy to use with single hand and works fantastically both in harsh and low lighting conditions. The phone responds in a perfect manner in and around the edges and have well saturated colors. Brightness levels are high and the screen is also easily visible even under the harsh Delhi sun. The text is easy to read and the images are rendered with a high level of details in them.

In terms of raw performance, the Sony Xperia XZ1 is powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC coupled with the usual 4GB of RAM. There’s 64GB of internal storage available on the phone which is further expandable for upto 256GB via a hybrid Micro SD card slot.

In regular use, the Sony Xperia XZ1 works fantastically with the applications. All the applications run snappy and also process instantly. The apps loading time is also pretty low and the phone offers a great touch responsiveness.

As far as heavier and graphic intensive tasks are concerned, the Sony Xperia XZ1 took care of the graphic demanding games without breaking a sweat. We played the Asphalt 8 Xtreme, Nova 3 along with a couple of other top-notch games, and the phone never disappointed us ever. The frames were pretty smooth and the apps played without any choppiness.

The Sony Xperia XZ1 packs dual speakers, one at the top and the other at the bottom. Both the speakers produce loud & crisp audio output and the Audiophiles will love it. The sound output is great for watching videos and the rightones are also pretty loud and easily perceptible while travelling in public transport.

Sony has also implemented a “SmartAmp” feature that supposedly provides 50-percent more sound pressure and the speakers less degrade over time. And just like any other Sony flagship, the Xperia XZ1 also comes packed with Hi-Res audio codecs such as FLAC, LDAC, ALAC and DSD. Not only that, the smartphone also packs the latest Bluetooth 5.0 with support for aptX HD audio.

You can also check how the Sony Xperia XZ1 performed in our Benchmark tests.

Sony Xperia XZ1 benchmarks

Sony Xperia XZ1 benchmarks

Sony Xperia XZ1 – Camera

The Sony Xperia XZ1 features a single camera sensor at the front and a single shooter at the rear with no fancy stuff around them. Just like Xperia XZ Premium, the Xperia XZ1 also packs a similar looking camera with similar features like 960fps slow-motion videos recording, 3D image creator feature and the AR application which is fun to use.

In terms of optics, the Xperia XZ1 boasts a 19-megapixel rear sensor and a 13-megapixel sensor at the front for selfies. In daylight conditions, both the rear and front cameras on the Xperia XZ1 delivered fantastic results. The photos were bright, colors were pretty accurate and the white balance level was also good. The selfie camera also performed fantastic results in daylight conditions.

However, the low light camera performance wasn’t as we expected. The front and rear cameras delivered grainy results and we had to use the LED flash to capture photos with good focus levels.

Check out the samples below.

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

sony xperia xz1 camera sample

Sony Xperia XZ1 – Battery Life

On papers the Sony Xperia XZ1 is backed by a 2700mAh battery which is relatively smaller what other flagship smartphones are offering (more than 3000mAh). Nevertheless, the handset offered a decent battery life in our testing period. The battery lasted for a day in all cases and never disappointed us in regular use. Although some applications consumed more battery than the other, in any case the phone lasted upto a day.

sony xperia xz1 battery

The Sony Xperia XZ1 also features the Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 technology along with the Qnovo technology that helped the smartphone charge instantly at a rate of upto 2-percent/minute.

Final Verdict

The Sony Xperia XZ1 is a well-constructed smartphone that comes with a premium build. In regular use, the smartphone may never disappoint you with graphic intensive gaming or multitasking. Although it packs a relatively smaller battery, the phone delivered upto a day of battery life. The camera on the XZ1 is also great and performs well in only daylight conditions, however may disappoint you in low lighting conditions.

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Bikram Singh Negi

Bikram Singh Negi

Holding camera at extreme destinations or playing games in metro train his love for tech never ends. Phones, Apps, Updates, Cameras and Tech gossip all in one roof, he’s a complete tech-package. Travelling or sampling new cuisine nothing would distort him from his passion.