Sony has finally unveiled the launch date of the Xperia 1. It'll launch nearly five months after the device was announced. Fashionably late, which seems to be Sony's thing, the past few years.
The Sony Xperia 1 is the company's latest flagship premium smartphone. It checks all of the boxes, at least on paper, but it is coming to the US pretty late. This is the first 4K OLED smartphone from any company. It's not a 18:9 aspect ratio, but instead, a 21:9 aspect ratio. There's no notch, thankfully, but this is Sony's CinemaWide screen, which is going to take some getting used too.
It is also powered by the Snapdragon 855 chipset, with 6GB of RAM and either 64GB or 128GB of storage. There is also a micro SD card slot available for expanding storage should you need it. Sony has also equipped the Xperia 1 with a 3300mAh capacity battery. Which does definitely seem pretty small on a device with a 6.5-inch 4K OLED display, but the company says that it should last you all day – we'll see.
The spec sheet is pretty high-end (minus the battery capacity), but that's not the whole story of the Xperia 1.
Sony has also upped their game in the audio department. There is Dolby Atmos included in the Xperia 1. Which is going to offer some pretty impressive sound quality for those that are going to be watching movies on their smartphones. And since this does have that 21:9 aspect ratio, Sony is really pitting this as a media-consumption device.
Perhaps the most important area that Sony has upped its game though, is in the camera department. Sony has finally decided to bring its Alpha team over to work with its smartphone teams. And we're starting to see the fruits of that labor with the Xperia 1. There's a triple-camera setup on the back of the phone, and there is Eye-AF which results in some crazy fast auto-focus. You'll also get some great low-light performance out of the Xperia 1, and that is all due to the Alpha team. Sony is bringing some of the technology that has made its mirrorless cameras so popular, over to its smartphones, and it's about time.
This is a pretty impressive smartphone for Sony, marking quite a few changes for the company. With the taller display, the improved cameras (and first triple-camera setup for the company on a smartphone), among other things. But seeing a 4K OLED display isn't something we see everyday. And according to Sony, it remains at 4K resolution all the time, unlike its previous "Premium" variants that were in 4K only for watching 4K content.
The Sony Xperia 1 has taken quite a while to come to the US, after Sony initially told us ahead of MWC that it would be launching in late-April. It'll actually launch on July 12 in the US. It'll be available from all of the usual retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and B&H Photo. With a retail price of $949. That undercuts some of the competition out there right now, but this is still not a cheap smartphone, by any means.