It only seems a few minutes since we reviewed the XZ2 but now, here it is, the Xperia XZ3. It might “just” look like a small upgrade, but there’s actually a lot more to appreciate about this one.
Specs include a 6″ 2880 x 1440 screen – that’s a smidge bigger than the one on the XZ2. However, this is OLED screen on a phone from Sony. It’s been developed alongside the Bravia TV guys, so it’s going to be good. Gorilla Glass 5 protects it and the phone has an IP68 protection against water and dust.
They’ve also borrowed / taken inspiration from HTC with a “Side Sense”. HTC call theirs “Edge Sense”. Here tapping the side of the phone will bring up a new contextual menu filled with apps. This uses some clever AI trickery to open based apps based on predictions for what you’ll be doing next. They’ve also included a Smart Launch feature which knows when you are holding the phone up horizontally (which, of course, is the proper way to take a photo) and automatically fires up the camera app.
What the phone doesn’t have is a notch. There’s also no 3.5mm headphone jack.
Specs include a 3,330mAh battery (again, a tad bigger than the XZ2), a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 CPU, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, NFC, dual-band WiFi, DLNA and a fingerprint scanner on the back.
Cameras? Well, you get a single 19MP Exmor RS MotionEye camera on the rear. This has autofocus that can shoot high dynamic range video in 4K and slow-motion video in 1080p. Up the front there’s a 13 megapixel unit, again this is an improvement on the 5 megapixel unit before. You also get an upgraded S-Force speaker. This gives a 20 percent louder volume than the previous model.
More in the promotional video below..
The Xperia XZ3 will be available in selected markets globally from end of September 2018 and will be among the first devices to ship with the latest Android 9 Pie. Pre-order will be available from 31st August- 5th October and you can get it in Black, White Silver, Forest Green and Bordeaux Red.
In the UK, you’ll get a digital copy of Activision’s new Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 on release day (12th October), if you pre-order. The XZ3 will cost £699 SIM-free. and will be available from a range of operators and retailers at launch.
Phil Elford, Trading Manager for Mobile Tech at Argos, tells us..
The launch of the new Sony XZ3 is really going to shake things up in the smartphone market this year. It will be interesting to see how the new handset fares against the likes of the Huawei P20 Pro and the Samsung S9. We think customers will particularly love the new “Smart launch” with AI that instantly prepares camera when users hold their phone up in landscape mode for seamless photography.
Full press release below..
Sony’s new flagship smartphone Xperia™ XZ3 brings you a seamless design for an immersive viewing experience
A stunning 6-inch 18:9 QHD+ HDR OLED display, powered by Sony’s award-winning BRAVIA® OLED TV technologies, to deliver deeper blacks, sharper images and more vibrant colours
· Beautifully curved 3D glass design seamlessly blends the OLED display into the slim phone body for perfect hand fit
Side sense uses AI to cleverly predict the apps you need most and puts them in easy reach
Smart launch with AI ensures you never miss capturing a moment by launching the camera mode when the phone is lifted horizontally
· 19MP Motion Eye™ main camera and 13MP front camera provide unique capturing technologies, including 4K HDR Movie recording, Full HD 960FPS Super slow motion and advanced 3D Creator, now with facial expressions
Berlin, IFA, 30th August 2018 – Sony Mobile Communications (“Sony Mobile”) continues its evolution in Xperia™ engineering and design with the announcement of its latest flagship, the Xperia XZ3, powered by the best of Sony’s expertise across TV, audio, imaging and gaming, in a sleek modern design.
“Our new XZ3 flagship smartphone is not just beautiful to look at, but it’s packed with Sony’s cutting-edge audio and visual technologies, letting you enjoy high quality content just as the creators intended, for a truly immersive entertainment experience in the palm of your hand.” said Hideyuki Furumi, Executive Deputy President, Head of Sales Marketing, Sony Mobile Communications.
The most immersive experience to See more, Hear more, Feel more
Xperia XZ3 features a beautiful 6-inch QHD+ HDR OLED display. Powered by Sony’s award-winning BRAVIA® OLED TV technologies, it delivers deeper blacks, higher contrast, and sharper clarity with more vibrant colours to enjoy your favourite movies and content. Advanced X-Reality™ for mobile will “up-convert” SDR content to near HDR (High Dynamic Range) so even when you’re watching content online, you can enjoy a high quality playback offering higher resolution, wider colour gamut, and improved contrast.
The immersive entertainment effect is also enhanced by Sony’s premium audio expertise. The S-Force Front Surround Sound speakers are even more powerful than before; now 20% louder than the previous model. Hi-Res Audio and DSEE HX take every track closer to the original recording so you can listen to music as the artist intended; while LDAC ensures superb wireless listening.
Sony’s Dynamic Vibration System creates a powerful haptic experience that enhances music, movies and games; letting you feel the action in your hands and bringing content to life in a completely unique way.
A seamless design and intuitive interface
The curved 3D glass on the front and back blend together seamlessly to create a sleek and elegant borderless design, generating beautiful reflections and ambient colours from all angles. The XZ3 sits comfortably in the hand, courtesy of an extended 18:9 screen framed around a near bezel-less body.
The XZ3’s slim 3mm aluminium metal frame does not compromise looks for durability, together with Corning® Gorilla® Glass 5 and IP65/68 certified water resistance[i]. And there is a choice of four beautiful colours[ii] in a stunning finish to reflect your individual style: Black, White Silver, Forest Green, and Bordeaux Red.
XZ3 also introduces a new user-friendly interface. Side sense uses AI to provide easy and convenient access to your favourite apps with just a double-tap anywhere on either side of your XZ3. Side sense intuitively knows what apps you want to access when to provide a seamless user experience.
Advanced Motion Eye™ camera and AI in Xperia
XZ3 features new Smart launch with AI that instantly prepares your camera when you hold your phone up in landscape mode, ensuring you never miss a moment. Smart launch, together with existing features with AI including Superior Auto, Predictive Capture, Predictive Autofocus and Smile shutter, ensure the XZ3 camera gives you the best chance for a great shot. And of course, only Sony’s Motion Eye™ camera offers 4K HDR Movie recording for pro-quality filming and Full HD 960fps Super slow motion for dramatic videos.
Complementing the 19MP main camera is a best-in-class 13MP front camera that lets you capture beautiful and improved portrait selfies with beauty and bokeh effects for creative shots. In addition, advanced 3D Creator now lets users add facial expressions to their scans, taken with either the front or main camera, making them even more lifelike.
Powered by the cutting-edge Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 845 Mobile Platform, the XZ3 gives users the world’s fastest maximum connection speeds at 1.2Gbps. In addition, your immersive experience is set to last all day, thanks to several useful battery features such as Smart Stamina, STAMINA mode, plus Battery Care[iii] and Qnovo Adaptive Charging technology to help the battery stay healthy to give you a longer battery lifespan.
A range of accessory covers, Style Cover Touch SCTH70 and Style Cover Stand SCSH70 will be available in corresponding colours. Also available are charging and audio accessories:
Wireless Charging Dock WCH20
Open-ear Stereo Headset STH40D
2-way Style USB Audio & Bluetooth® Headset SBH90C
USB Type-C™ 2-in-1 Cable EC270