MWC 2017: Hands-On With Sony's Smarter Xperia XZ Premium


Sony announced a number of new smartphones this morning during their MWC 2017 press event. Although, what is likely to be the most interesting of the new batch of Sony smartphones is the Sony Xperia XZ Premium. This is the most obviously equivalent to a 2017 Sony flagship smartphone and is one which Sony notes is more of an innovation flagship. As to be expected, cameras play a big role in that innovation, as does the display. Speaking of the latter, Sony has now confirmed the display comes with 4K support, as well as HDR support.  On the camera front, the new Sony Xperia XZ Premium employs the help of a new sensor which is capable of recording 4K content, although it is not able to record HDR content, in spite of the display being able to playback HDR content. The sensor is use is a custom Exmor IMX 300 sensor, which comes with a number of benefits. Although Sony have been quick to highlight that one of the big selling points is that this camera includes the world's first 3 layer sensor. While a number of software tweaks will look to make the camera experience not just better, but actually somewhat anticipatory. This is due to the Sony Xperia XZ Premium coming loaded with features like predictive capture which looks to capture a small number of images before the shutter button has been pressed.

In terms of the design, the Sony Xperia XZ Premium is certainly the most identifiable of the new smartphones, as the other announced handsets look somewhat the same. In contrast, the Sony Xperia XZ Premium comes with more of a premium look and feel and employs the help of a glass back which adds to look of the device. Speaking of which, the glass on the front and the back is Gorilla Glass 5. The general look of the device is consistent throughout as the Sony Xperia XZ Premium makes use of a unibody design.While some models are listed to come with an IP certification for protection against dust and water. Inside, you can expect to find 4GB RAM as well as 64GB internal storage. While the Sony Xperia XZ Premium comes powered by the very latest Snapdragon processor, the Snapdragon 835. Along with support for LTE Cat 16.


Interestingly, it does seem that Sony is making a bit of a push here with machine learning. Much like the camera is able to anticipate image capturing, the smartphone itself is able to make use of machine learning to make suggestions on various settings, including the brightness, contrast, and so on. Likewise, battery estimations and other system tweaks will also adopt a machine learning approach to provide more accurate estimations. Battery charging is also another smarter aspect as the Sony Xperia XZ Premium makes use of Qnovo adaptive charging. Which among other things, can hold off charging the last part of the battery until shortly before an alarm is due to go off. Essentially, ensuring the owner wakes up to a fresh and fully charged battery.

In terms of availability, Sony has yet to provide firm details on when the Xperia XZ Premium will become available to buy. Likewise, there are no firm details at present on which locations the Xperia XZ Premium will become available in, or at what price point it will be positioned at. However, if you do want to take a closer look at Sony's new smarter Xperia XZ Premium, you can do so in the gallery below.

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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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