The newest trend among smartphone manufacturers to come out with a new flagship smartphone and then follow-up with a mini version. Samsung started this trend for 2013; their Galaxy S4 was very popular, but many claimed it was too large to carry comfortably, so Samsung followed it up with the Galaxy S-4 Mini. The HTC One was beautifully crafted out of aluminum and was the talk of the town, with many claiming it was the best looking phone ever made. HTC needed to keep that momentum going, so they came out with the HTC One Mini. Motorola jumped onboard by offering a Droid Mini to round out their Droid MAXX and Droid Ultra series of phones on Verizon.
Now Sony is jumping on the Mini-wagon after they just announced their newest flagship, the Xperia Z1 just last week at IFA Berlin. There were rumors and leaks flying around about the Z1 Mini, and many thought Sony would also announce the Z1 Mini at IFA as well, but that did not happen:
What is so special about the Sony Xperia Z1 Mini is the fact that the specifications are, supposedly, staying relatively the same as its "big brother," the Z1. Except for the display dropping from a 1080p to a 720p resolution, the Z1 Mini is retaining the same Qualcomm Snapdragon processor clocked at 2.2GHz, the 2GB of RAM, and even the 20.7MP camera – the battery gets shaved from 3,000 mAh to 2,400 mAh to fit into the smaller dimensions of the Mini, but that comes as no surprise.
I think it is a fantastic idea for a flagship phone to followup with a "Mini" version for those users that want the very best, but in a smaller package. The problem is not in the idea of providing a mini version, the problem is in the execution of the mini's hardware. What Samsung and HTC did to their minis is where I have a problem – the Galaxy S4 Mini and the HTC One Mini look exactly like a shrunken version of the original phone and kudos for that, but when it comes to the specifications, they also become "mini" in comparison to the original; swapping processors, memory, and display specs until the mini versions would be hard pressed to perform like the original. Display resolution I can forgive (a little) because the ppi increase when the screen size is smaller, so to the human eye, the change can become a non-issue.
So kudos to Sony and their Xperia Z1 Mini for making a "true" Mini in a sense, where we can enjoy both the looks and performance of the original. The latest rumors has the Z1 Mini being launched in early 2014, possibly at CES and as we get more information, we will certainly pass that on to you.
What do you think of the Sony Xperia Z1 and Z1 Mini – is one of them next on your list of new phones?