Android Headliner: A Quick Question For Sony…What Happened To The Xperia Z4?


Owners of the Sony Xperia Z3 are likely to tell you how much they love their smartphone and with good reason too. It is a good phone. Besides the fact that it a Sony product (which in itself, does mean something in the tech world), it is well designed and a solid performer. As such, many were looking forward to the arrival of their next flagship device and follow-on Xperia device, the Sony Xperia Z4. However, more recently, the excitement and general build-up has felt more like a build-down. Almost as if, the device is being downplayed for some reason. This downplaying then climaxed in what was clearly the most underwhelming device launch in history.

For those that did miss it (more than you would think), Sony did unveil the Xperia Z4 this week. However, unlike just about every major flagship manufacturer, there was no big press event, there were no bells and whistles, no fireworks and no big massive statements being made. Yes, there was an event, but it was tiny. Yes, there was a press announcement, but it was pretty much a blog post, yes there was a device and yes, it was the Xperia Z4. Although Sony might not be known for the same sort of razzmatazz for their mobile product launches as Samsung or Apple, even by their own Xperia Z3 launch standards, this was disappointing.


Now, there have been rumors that the Z4 is not going to be the main Sony flagship device and instead one will come next month. but two points here, one, this is a rumor and two, what happened to the Xperia Z4. Limited markets? not a flagship device? Barely any noticeable differences between the Z3 and Z4? The bigger question though, is what happened to Sony? Did the leaks of last year and the amount lost on 'The Interview' result in the budget being taken away from the mobile arm? Doubtful. Has the likes of Xiaomi and OnePlus eaten away at their middle-ground market so much that they just gave up? Possibly. Has Sony lost their mojo? Likely.

The truth is, it is not an easy question to answer. There definitely seems to be something in the wind with Sony at the moment. They do not seem to be 'on their game' quite as much as would be expected. From a news point of view, agencies did all they could to promote the device. Rumors were abundant, as were leaks, renders and the whole nine yards. However, the device was just not a contender in any respect. So much so, that already, the talk has moved to the Xperia Z5 . Almost as if the Z4 did not happen. While Samsung was thought to be in a similar position last year, there are a couple of noticeable differences. The Galaxy S5 was classed as a 'let down' but it still did sell bucket loads. Not to mention, Samsung did still give it a massive "MEET SAMSUNG GALAXY S5" launch. Even though the phone was highly criticized, Samsung did not let that stand in the way of pushing the device, in their typical high-profile way and it panned out. The S5 worked as a bridge gap and then a year later, they unveiled what many are now calling the 'greatest phone ever', the Galaxy S6.

Can the same really be expected from Sony? After the rather non-eventful launch event of the Z4, it seems much more like the Xperia Z line (and maybe even Sony, in general in the mobile world) can see the exit sign and are preparing to leave. Is this the beginning of a slow death of Sony mobile products? Should the Sony fan(boys and girls) now be quickly and quietly looking to jump ship? Who knows. Either way though, Sony, if you are listening and if you are eyeing that emergency door for a quick-footed exit, then don't forget to take your Sony Xperia Z4 with you. It seems the interest in it, now matches your intention behind it, minimal.


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John has been writing about and reviewing tech products since 2014 after making the transition from writing about and reviewing airlines. With a background in Psychology, John has a particular interest in the science and future of the industry. Besides adopting the Managing Editor role at AH John also covers much of the news surrounding audio and visual tech, including cord-cutting, the state of Pay-TV, and Android TV. Contact him at [email protected]

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