Hands-On With The Sony Xperia XA2 & XA2 Ultra - CES 2018

If you are in the market for a new smartphone within the next couple of months then it looks like Sony will have no less than three new options for you to consider. As part of its CES 2018 announcements, Sony introduced three new phones although two of them are essentially different variants of the same phone. Not to mention, these are upgraded models of existing smartphones. These are the Xperia XA2 and the Xperia XA2 Ultra and following the main announcement from Sony we were able to take a closer look at the two new arrivals.

With these being upgraded models of an existing lineup they do represent more of a gradual change than anything else with both models not only appearing largely identical to each other, but also fairly alike to their predecessors. The same boxy design is in effect with both smartphones, and both make use of a ‘borderless’ or ‘edge-to-edge’ display. Depending on your view of the current trend of smartphones moving more towards a full bezel-less front panel, this will likely determine how appealing these two new Sony phones look. In either case, they are certainly Sony-looking smartphones. On the back, however, there are some clearer changes, as like the other Sony phone announced this week (the Xperia L2) the rear-facing camera has been moved from the left of the phone to a more central position. Likewise, the fingerprint sensor now resides on the back of the device and will be fully active when these two phones become available in the US. Another of the changes is how the newer versions do come with a slightly more curvy back plate.

While the Xperia XA2 Ultra does come with a number of under the hood improvements compared to the standard XA2, it also does come with a notable difference to its front panel. As the Ultra model boasts not one, but two, front-facing cameras offering buyers not only a front-facing camera experience that is better suited to wider shots, but also one which is expected to perform better in low-light conditions. Of course, another difference between the two XA2 models is the size. As the standard Xperia XA2 comes loaded with a 5.2-inch display while the XA2 Ultra offers a 6-inch display. As a result these two devices are going to be catering to different buyers in spite of the number of similarities as those looking for a smaller phone will be far better suited to the smaller design of the XA2, while the XA2 will provide a much improved (in terms of display size) viewing experience - as well as the better selfie shots.

As these are Sony smartphones it should probably not come as too much of a surprise that both phones are going to be available in multiple different color options. Overall, three of the four colors (Black, Blue, and Silver) will be common to both. The fourth color will differ though with the Xperia XA2 available in Pink and the XA2 Ultra available in Gold. Both of which (as well as the other color options) can be checked out in closer detail in the galleries below.

Xperia XA2

Xperia XA2 Ultra

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John Anon

Editor-in-Chief
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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