Sony Xperia Z1 Review

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Design and Build

Sony refined the sharp edges of the original Xperia Z to make way for slightly curved edges in the Xperia Z1, with the hopes of converting it into something that’s easier to hold. Sony also made tweaks on the Z’s plastic sides with body-colored panels, so now it made the Z1 exhibit a tighter and higher-quality finish.

As expected, the Z1 is also water-resistant, which explains the flaps over the sockets and ports. Measuring 144.4 x 73.9 x 8.5 mm, the Sony Xperia Z1 has a slightly larger frame, and as a result of having a flat front and back, it can feel more slippery and more challenging to hold. Comparing it with the Samsung Galaxy S4 which has the same 5-inch display, the latter has smaller dimensions. Still, the build quality of the Z1 is something to be admired.


The Z1 is powered by an impressive quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset clocked at 2.2 GHz with a 2GB of RAM, and is certainly a welcome upgrade. The chipset is more advanced than most of its competitors, and you can expect to open apps and perform daily tasks in a snap. The flipside with a powerhouse phone, however, is that it tends to heat up. Luckily, it doesn’t really happen when browsing or watching movies, but just in the more demanding tasks such as gaming.

Battery Life

Despite the aforementioned downside, the 3000mAh battery is pretty impressive, which can be credited to the software adjustment made by Sony. With the Stamina mode, you can choose which apps to retain data connection whenever the phone is idle, so that you can have full control over your phone’s activity and save battery.


The camera is probably the aspect where Sony is mostly trying to compete with. With a 20.7-MP sensor, it’s definitely the highest-resolution camera in any Android phone to date. Of course we all know that megapixels aren’t everything, and Sony is well aware of that too, which is why the Z1 is equipped with a large ½.3- inch sensor. Unfortunately, the quality of the photos produced doesn’t really do these numbers justice. While results can be lovely in good lighting condition, the results are average in low-lighting. Still, we can’t take away anything from the Z1’s camera.


  • Waterproof
  • Solid build
  • Cool camera features
  • Decent battery life



  • Not the best display
  • Device heats up
  • Camera not as competitive as expected


The Verdict

Most certainly, the Z1 has beaten the original Z and we can applaud Sony for its conscious efforts in creating worthy upgrades. Aside from being waterproof, there’s a lot to like about this piece of machinery, given its awesome performance and superb battery life. However, it may not stand-out when compared to other handsets of its kind. Another thing to think about is the enormous size, which may not suit everyone’s liking, particularly when you consider the fact that you can get a same gigantic phone which is easier to hold.

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