x PhoneArena is looking for new authors! To view all available positions, click here.
  • Home
  • News
  • Sony Z Ultra is the first Google Play Edition phablet, now available for $649

Sony Z Ultra is the first Google Play Edition phablet, now available for $649

Posted: , by Michael H.

Tags:

Sony Z Ultra is the first Google Play Edition phablet, now available for $649
We saw the clues coming about the LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition which was just released into the Google Play store, but the Sony Z Ultra Google Play Edition had us a bit surprised. Sony has always been a close collaborator with Google in the Android Open Source Project, and it has long been assumed that there would be a Google Play Edition Sony device eventually, and that time is now.

When we went to the Google Play store to check the listing for the newly announced LG G Pad 8.3 GPE, we saw that there was another listing: the Sony Z Ultra GPE, which is now officially the first phablet to be in the Google Play Edition lineup. As with other Google Play Edition devices, the Sony Z Ultra GPE is the same as the Sony Xperia Z Ultra on hardware, but is running stock Android 4.4 KitKat. This means that you get the same 6.4-inch 1080p display, Snapdragon 800 SoC clocked at 2.2GHz, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, 8MP rear camera with Sony's Exmor RS sensor, 2MP front camera, and 3000mAh battery. 

That's a lot of phone right there. As you would also expect from a Google Play Edition device, the Z Ultra is unlocked and selling at full unlocked pricing: $649. It is available right now in the Play Store for U.S. customers, no word on international availability. 

The one odd thing about this listing is that unlike the other GPE devices, the Play Store listing does have the device as the Sony Z Ultra, without the Xperia branding unlike the LG G Pad and Samsung Galaxy GPE devices. It may not mean anything, but it was a curious note. We haven't yet seen an official announcement from Sony, so there may be an explanation of the name change coming.

source: Google Play

48 Comments
  • Options
    Close




posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:35 5

1. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


Sony absolutely ruins their screens with permanent factory PLASTIC screen protectors, so the screen scratches very easily (it's just cheap plastic that you touch, with the glass uselessly under it), and it's impossible to clean off fingerprints and gunk. It's hard to believe that they still do this! It totally ruins the experience with their flagship Z1, which I would've otherwise bought. A real shame!!

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:38 17

2. LahiruRD (Posts: 8; Member since: 24 Mar 2012)


Dude, you can always remove it ! or you can buy a good screen protecter & appy it over the preinstalled one. No problems at all. I'm doing that since X10, Arc, S, Z & now on Z1.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:46 1

4. InspectorGadget80 (Posts: 6408; Member since: 26 Mar 2011)


Then DON'T but it if u don't like it

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:15 3

10. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


@It's very, very difficult to remove and most YouTube videos showing it use razor blades and almost always scratch or damage the phone in the process. Also, the Sony logo is actually on the screen protector, not the glass, so you lose that (along with your warranty and ability to return/exchange it if needed). If you want a screen protector, get one. But DON'T FORCE IT ON USERS! Most people hate this, which is well documented and almost every review of Sony's flagships talk about how bad this is.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 15:14 3

22. tadaa (Posts: 245; Member since: 18 Apr 2013)


it ain't a screen protector. its a shatter proof film like what buccob said

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 15:11

21. Mxyzptlk (limited) (Posts: 3510; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)


Pot calling the kettle black

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:11 9

9. buccob (Posts: 1409; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)


Those screen protectors are not scratch resistant, they are shatter resistant... meaning that if you are unlucky enough to crack the digitizer, it will most likely have a small crack and not a spider-web crack...

Totally worth it! I hope sony keeps delivering their smartphon with this added protection...

And as LahiruRD suggested, I applied an additional Scratch Resistant protector over the pre-installed one with no problem...

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:21 1

12. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


Fine, then get a screen protector. There are many good ones out there. But DON'T FORCE IT ON USERS, most of which hate them.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 15:15 5

23. LahiruRD (Posts: 8; Member since: 24 Mar 2012)


But hey, what's the problem with it? anyways no one forces you to buy a screen protector. If you don't like, don't buy it. It's simple as that :)

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 00:39

40. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


The screen protector is permanently attached to the phone with a heating process. So yes, they force you to have a plastic film over the glass, instead of just glass. So it's basically a plastic screen.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 16:50 1

26. imMature (Posts: 82; Member since: 04 Sep 2013)


There's not a single user, not power user, that I know that hate the shatterproof sheet on their Sony smartphones. All of them never complained or said anything about it whenever I talk about their phones (I do software services on phones so I got many acquaintances) The thing is.. If you hate it, get another phone. There are thousands(!) of option for Android phones out there.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 01:02

42. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


From Android Central: "But we have to take issue with one of the manufacturer’s design decisions, and our main gripe has to do with the invisible, non-removable plastic sheets attached to the phone’s front and back. Presumably they’re there to provide some additional protection for the screen and the back, but they also have the effect of making the phone feel way more plasticky than it should, in addition to being a magnet for fingerprints and lint. Sadly, here’s a metal and glass phone that feels like plastic."

And most other reviewers have the same negative opinion...

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 03:42 2

43. Duketytz (Posts: 467; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)


Hey hey hey! If you don't like the phone, don't get it. As simple as that! What's so difficult about it? Tell me which phone is 100% perfect? If this is imperfection to you, then choose another phone which you think suits you better. I don't see how complaining here against others will make your life better.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 16:05 3

24. AnTuTu (limited) (Posts: 804; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)


This is not phablet it is a tablet please correct :)

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 19:53

34. 21babydoll12 (Posts: 42; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)


I understand the complex sitiuation of not knowing how to remove a shatter protective film from a screen. Really, its very scientificly complicated. I sense a lack of ownership and narrow minded consumer (fanboy???)

My phone hasnt had any issue with with the oem shatter proof film. It saved my phone twice. Kinda wished all other manufacters would do this because its actually very helpful and gets rid of the need of aftermarket products.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 00:43

41. camera531 (Posts: 158; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)


Fanboy of what? I'm not claiming something is better @21babydoll12. Most reviews of the Z1 pan the plastic screen protector (Engadget, Brownlee, CNET, BGR, etc.) and it's a heat treated plastic film that doesn't just "come off" smartass. I've owned Sony phones, including the Z, and know what I'm talking about.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 04:38

44. boosook (Posts: 987; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


You don't even own a Sony phone, and you don't actually know the quality of Sony (and former SonyEricsson) phones. You probably didn't even try the Z1. You just read this somewhere in some forum and, for some unknown reason, you felt an urge to come here and express an opinion on something you don't actually know. Thank you for your precious contribution, anyway.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:46 3

3. ArtSim98 (limited) (Posts: 2738; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Well this was a happy surprise for the end of my day!

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:51 5

5. Gaurav008 (Posts: 274; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)


No flash dissappointed me. For a high end phone, you would think it's a given. :/

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 15:02 2

20. Joshing4fun (Posts: 1047; Member since: 13 Aug 2010)


I need my flashlight!

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:58 8

6. emadshiny (Posts: 1131; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


Now I see good signs to hope the next nexus to be made by Sony.
NEXPERIA is a good name for it!

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 16:52 2

27. imMature (Posts: 82; Member since: 04 Sep 2013)


Lol. Good one :P

Anyway, every other top manufacturers has got their turn to do a Nexus so Sony should get their turn next! Would really love to see an Xperia Nexus!

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 20:44 1

37. apple4never (Posts: 944; Member since: 08 May 2013)


an xperia nexus would be boss especially with sony's camera expertise

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 13:58

7. GrapeEyes (Posts: 243; Member since: 01 Sep 2013)


The best screens are on the Lumia 1520

Best phone in the world!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jwrfESjB84

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:01 18

8. ihavenoname (Posts: 1377; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


Elop, is that you? Your companys advertising is becoming more and more desperate.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:22 3

13. GrapeEyes (Posts: 243; Member since: 01 Sep 2013)


How dare you, I hate Elop!!

I am the great GrapeEyes!!

:)

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:39 1

18. trickster_qc (Posts: 80; Member since: 18 Jun 2013)


what a boring video. the music sucks and the image quality isn't good at all.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:52

19. GrapeEyes (Posts: 243; Member since: 01 Sep 2013)


I did say it was a basic video. However it has over 1500 likes on facebook :)

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=1400929700150687

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 18:27 3

32. cdgm2509 (Posts: 30; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)


can you freaking stop posting stupid things about nokia and their crappy phones on other brands articles? Thank you.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 04:40 1

45. boosook (Posts: 987; Member since: 19 Nov 2012)


Lumia? Why should I care? Does it come in a google play edition?

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:16

11. Tsepz_GP (Posts: 819; Member since: 12 Apr 2012)


They should've gone with the Galaxy Note 3, but anyway I guess other OEMs need a chance to.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:23

14. emadshiny (Posts: 1131; Member since: 05 Dec 2012)


I really appreciate you that you give this chance to other OEMs.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:30 2

15. jan25 (Posts: 387; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)


No, they should've gone with the Note 3. The Ultra could barely pass for a phone.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:30 3

16. Lycan155 (Posts: 78; Member since: 24 Nov 2013)


I dont think an s pen device can have pure android because the pen software is orientated around touchwiz ... I hope you can get me :/

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 14:33

17. XperiaFanZone (Posts: 1282; Member since: 21 Sep 2012)


As well as the multi-window feature.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 18:06

31. giani (Posts: 269; Member since: 13 Nov 2012)


Just so u know...not everyone likes note3...not everyone like plastic aka faux leather...amoled...same old booring design... And don't even get me started on touchwiz ...

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 20:14 1

36. Jason2k13 (Posts: 642; Member since: 28 Mar 2013)


because everyone is buying a Sony Z ultra these days?

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 20:00

35. 21babydoll12 (Posts: 42; Member since: 29 Mar 2013)


Disagree, having one from each manufacture is a great idea as they cover all form sizes too. Looking foward to the GPE 2014 and beyond.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 16:25

25. Dowson (unregistered)


SONY bring US the Z1, holys*it

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 16:57

28. Zero0 (Posts: 583; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)


This leaves Motorola as the only major Android manufacturer without a Google-branded release. Weird, because Motorola is a Google subsidiary.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 17:30

29. maulgandhi (Posts: 46; Member since: 11 Jan 2013)


Im lovin Google how they going all nexus with famous products. They are more than serious about their nexus line. I would still like to see how Google will play with Motorola.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 18:01

30. JunitoNH (Posts: 888; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)


I guess they only want to sell six, at that price point.

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 18:46

33. belovedson (Posts: 832; Member since: 30 Nov 2010)


which google play phone or nexus of this current gen the best priced

posted on 10 Dec 2013, 21:54

38. anleoflippy (Posts: 271; Member since: 03 Jan 2013)


The Z Ultra has one of the best screen on the market, companied with powerful internals and marvelous design. I think Google picked the right device to make it a GPE. Even though no Sony software in there, it still retains the X-Reality doe mobile and still able to use a pen/pencil or anything for that matter to operate it. It's just dissappointing that the stock Android does not have any capabilities to take advantage of the screen. Same can be said if a Note 3 GPE exist.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 00:11

39. crazymonkey05 (Posts: 139; Member since: 20 Nov 2012)


I really think that Google is hinting that the next nexus device will be by Sony. Because every OEM that has a GPE device has also had a nexus so this leads to speculation.
And with the whole Motorola thing I think Motorola will have to step up it's game. As Google said they want to keep Motorola independent from Google so if moto wants a GPE they will have to work for it. And also Motorola also has Google experience devices that are basicly nexus devices as they receive updates from google

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 06:34

46. Phaze0085 (Posts: 100; Member since: 22 Sep 2011)


Anyone know if the battery on the GPe of the XZU will be better compared to the original?

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 08:05

47. Topcat488 (Posts: 1141; Member since: 29 Sep 2012)


That's a whole lot of bezel on that there Z1, if ya know what I mean there boi. A whole lot.

posted on 11 Dec 2013, 14:12

48. jack123 (Posts: 63; Member since: 07 Jan 2013)


I owned Z ultra c6806 for couple months already, but I really like stock android. Is there any way I can flash stock Rom of Z ultra GE for my c6806?

Want to comment? Please login or register.

Latest stories