Sony Xperia acro S Review
If there is one thing that smartphones do not get along well with, that would be water. Once inside your handset, it is difficult to get out and can easily cause irreversible damage that warranty doesn't cover. Yet the Android-powered Sony Xperia acro S is the kind of phone you actually won't hesitate bringing to the beach or putting on the edge of a swimming pool. That's because it is IP-57 certified, meaning that it can withstand a 30 minute dunk underwater at up to 1 meter. Cool, huh?
But the scuba-diving skills are not all that makes the Xperia acro S stand out as the hardware inside it is also pretty decent: 1.5-GHz dual-core processor, 12-megapixel camera, and a 4.3-inch LCD screen with more pixels per inch than you would find on an iPhone's Retina Display. That definitely sounds like a great combination between specs and features, so let's fire the smartphone up and put it through its paces.
- Wall charger
- microUSB cable
- Micro SIM card adapter
- Wired stereo headset with in-ear headphones
- Charging dock
- Quick start guide and other papers
"Pink – it's the color of passion", as Steven Tyler once wisely said. And the guy must be onto something as this pink Sony Xperia acro S looks incredibly attractive – like a giant piece of strawberry candy waiting to be devoured. For people who aren't into flashy colors, black and white variants are available as well. The flat front side of the handset is also worthy of being admired for the screen and the bezel blend together seamlessly creating a pitch-black surface your fingers will surely be tempted to touch.
You can compare the Sony Xperia acro S with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
But once that initial positive impression began wearing out, we started noticing its imperfections. For starters, the Sony Xperia acro S feels quite chubby for a 4.3-incher and definitely gets noticed when its resting in your pocket. It is 12 millimeters thick and weighs 147 grams, which could be partly due to its rather hefty 1,910mAh battery, yet still, we are left wondering why Sony didn't make the handset at least a bit slimmer. And that's not all: the plastic-made SIM card tray is flimsy, the lock key is way too soft, and most importantly, the capacitive buttons are tricky to operate as they are small and positioned too close to the screen.
IP57 certified, meaning that it is resistant to dust and water damage. That explains why its ports are protected by removable plastic flaps. Moreover, its screen retains its responsiveness even when used with wet fingers (yes, we tried it), and this is something that even the cream of the Android crop cannot brag with.
It is truly stunning how detailed images look on the 4.3-inch 720x1280 pixel LCD screen that the Sony Xperia acro S has been blessed with. At 342ppi, pixelation is non-existent and even the tiniest of text is legible, no matter how much we zoom out. Reproduction across the entire color spectrum is very accurate. Blacks look slightly grayish and whites seem a tad warmer than they should, but not too much to bother us. What's far less impressive are the display's mediocre viewing angles, but at least its outdoor visibility is way above the average.
Drag the picture or use the keyboard arrows to rotate the phone.
Double click or press keyboard Space to zoom in/out
32. hkxm8 (Posts: 52; Member since: 08 Apr 2012)
You both must have eye problem, Xperia Ray is more like Nokia X6 but nothing happen. I very sure that Nokia will not waste they time to compare "this and that" like someone else (Sorry about my english).
2. bobfreking55 (Posts: 866; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)
good review. Next Sony phone will be out anyway.
since the first comments usually get the most attention, I would like to ask for the community's opinion on Sony's UI, since I'm not particularly a fan of it. Feels like Eclair.
18. aokde (Posts: 186; Member since: 09 Jul 2012)
Well, i myself is an owner of a XPERIA Arc and love the UI, i think sony's ui is the best android skin out there. Every time i see someone with a not sony android phone, i think to myself how the hell is he satisfied with that ugly looking ui...
My mother has the XPERIA S and also, loving the UI.
23. Aaron_R96 (Posts: 198; Member since: 22 Jan 2012)
I love Sony's UI, it looks modern and stylish with all of the functionality of ICS and other UI skins, looks much better than TouchWiz which in my mind looks very tacky - especially older versions. Like-wise I prefer the 2012 version of Sony's UI on the Xperia S and co. and personally I think the WALKMAN app is the best music player app out there on android. It's the same as Sony's phones, minimalistic, but gorgeous.
30. XiphiasGladius (Posts: 803; Member since: 21 Aug 2011)
It's a very simple UI, non-obtrussive, it can even be described as some what bland if compared to Samsung's UI, LG's UI, ang HTC's UI. But if you prefer fancy UI then Sony's UI will be hard to like for you.
33. Mittal (Posts: 429; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)
I realy dig Sony's UI.... The icons are gr8
I just am not a fan of the new NXT design. Th Ericsson days were much better.
But i guess they have made amends with the Experia T, V & J
4. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)
9! PLEASE! 9! tough body + high end specs.
49. buccob (Posts: 1480; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
At the end of the day, PhoneArena's rating is not what matter the most... its User's rating what matters...
5. loken (Posts: 462; Member since: 09 May 2012)
This is the best phone :) pefromance , screen and durability! other oem's wont make a phone like this!!
13. Nick_T (Posts: 145; Member since: 27 May 2011)
Apologies. We post the average score out of 3 runs. Forgot to divide the sum by three. The rest of the figures are correct.
8. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3013; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)
So, Sony doesn't want to be left behind when every other manufacturer is bringing ultimacy to their phones, eh?
Nice move Sony, like the phone...except for the bulk you created when this world is getting closer to the slim truth of phone making.
And i wish you'd price this mid-ranged.
9. mrbtree (Posts: 59; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
i don't think points need to be taken off because its a little chubby at 12 mm. or the weight as well because the ip57 rating you'd expect them to add something to keep the water out, like when top gear uk do their amphibious boat challenges.
10. Mitchel (Posts: 228; Member since: 25 May 2012)
I don't know what's wrong but Sony's screen display looks washed out even with the 342 ppi density & Sony bravia engine..
11. mrbtree (Posts: 59; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
it's the lcd screen they use, it's just normal lcd, not like lg's ips hd or super lcd 2. but imagine a super lcd 2 plus the bravia engine = win win
12. spiderpig2894 (Posts: 433; Member since: 10 Jan 2012)
i guess in photos but the Reality Display looks nice in personal
34. OptimusOne (Posts: 694; Member since: 22 May 2012)
well youve only seen this froma video camera or screenshots. maybe its your computer screen :P
17. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)
Why has phone arena yet to put up the article with the benchmarks of the Xperia T, TX, and V??
19. cepcamba (Posts: 717; Member since: 27 Feb 2012)
Yup, I saw on some other coverage that those three are now the top three (in terms of benchmarks).
21. ryq24 (Posts: 507; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)
sony always get average reviews even from other phone reviewers. i wonder if their engineers and designers read these reviews and learn anything from it?
22. fervid (Posts: 173; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)
Photos look hazy like there were finger prints on the camera lens. Gotta clean that thing before testing photo quality.
24. nsnk86 (Posts: 43; Member since: 18 Jun 2012)
amazing to see tht Sony's flagship Xperia S got tough with name acro S........ i could hv waited for this fone but still am satisfied with my xperia S.... :)
27. maryam (Posts: 2; Member since: 31 Aug 2012)
Hello, I want to buy sony xperia acro s I love it but most of my friends say that galaxy 3 is better than it . now I dont know which one is better. can you help me if u used them. thx.
29. amalchummar (Posts: 6; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)
hey if ur lookn for a big screen best performance s3 is ur choice.......but acro s has its own style and its not at all bad in performance!!!1 the screens just a little bit more small....(but in the case of battery life stick to s3)!!!! oh yeah and if u luv takn pics i would go for acro s :)
36. RamyRamz69 (Posts: 390; Member since: 12 Dec 2011)
The Galaxy S3 has a bigger screen and a faster processor.
The Xperia Acro S has a better camera, design(in my opinion), a sharper screen with more vibrant colors and is Water/Dust proof.
37. malcolm (Posts: 1; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
I have the S3 and my wife has the Acro S. In my opinion, these are the best 2 phones on the market, today.
Here is my comparison:
Screen: the oversaturated colours on S3 are great first and makes it look really vibrant, but after 2 months, I really prefer the Sony LCD with natural colours and sharper screen.
OS: Sony UI vs Touchwiz. Both aren't perfect but i prefer the Sony a little more. Just looks and feels a but more adult and mature. But i changed the S3 to Apex and the Acro S to Go launcher.
Performance: real world comparisons show that quad core is overkill - but nice to have. Both phones handle anything and everything with no lag. On paper - a win for S3 but real world is a draw for me.
Calling: both our phones are on the same network and both are good. Sony is a bit better as the voices sound better. Reception is fine on both.
Size: after 2 months, i still find the S3 uncomfortable to hold. Thinner is not better! Acro S is thicker, but it actually makes it nicer and easier to hold!
Camera: One of my previous phones is an N8 that was released 2 years ago. Today, the best phones on the market, still are no way near the quality of the N8, and this is still the benchmark for me. In low light, both are awful. The Sony is particularly bad. This is the second Sony we have owned with Exmor sensor, and i can say that it does nothing. The S3 is not much better in low light. Outdoors, both are good, but the Sony does need more light to get acceptable photos, so S3 wins here.
Battery: a draw here. Because nearly all the Androids require recharging nightly, because you'll want to play with these babies! But they are both an improvement on last years Androids that required care to make it to the night. Also, the Acro S comes with a nice docking station that you can dock the phone to so it looks really nice as a night clock.
Overall: Both are really good and in real world performance, both are brilliant. The Acro S is fun (i take it swimming with the kids) and has a sharper screen than the iphone. It feels good to hold and use. Calling is excellent and the free Docking station is great.
The S3 has a better camera and for the most intensive games, it performs better. I use my S3 like a PS Vita. Internet and games!
So don't worry about which one is better as I can say they both are good. Either one will be an excellent choice for the next 18 months!
28. amalchummar (Posts: 6; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)
if acro s has a good processor, good pixel density, screen size and much more y cant it be as gud as an S3 or one V???????(I knw the battery life is kinda dull)
31. erwin4 (Posts: 1; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)
looks like nokia N9.. nowadays all phones are like the same in appearance..
35. maryam (Posts: 2; Member since: 31 Aug 2012)
thx amalchummar for helping me if u were in my place which one was ur choice?
38. amalchummar (Posts: 6; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)
i would prefer xperia acro s because i lyk its style, better pixel density, shows true color contrast, processor and graphics processor r one of the best, and i luv takn pics so.... acro s!!!!(the batteries not up to the mark though....) Best of all it fits in your pocket and u can take it for a swin if u lyk :)
40. BigDnm01 (Posts: 6; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)
loved the Xperia phones since the x10, my own opinion, their UX is the best! amazing features, effects, interactive than my current HTC Amaze 4G, the Samsung Galaxy S3, or the iPhone 4.
been looking for another Xperia phones, but sadly, since I'm stuck with the T-Mobile USA network, all Xperia except for the x10, are 2G.
I was really wanting to get this phone, great features, especially the IP-57 water/dust resistant. but the 2G was really a big concern for me.
However, since the Xperia T/TX was announced, which seems to operate on 1700/2100 mhz radio band, T-Mobile 3G/4G is capable. I'm waiting for news on that. too bad the Xperia T/TX isn't waterproof....
42. Paximos (Posts: 72; Member since: 26 Jul 2012)
I bought this phone and I loved it BUT, this phone had a huge Bluetooth issue. I also had similar issues with an Xperia Sola and apparantly, I am not the only one. Phone lags at times as well.
43. mjmusa (Posts: 1; Member since: 17 Sep 2012)
What if the phone went more than 1m into the water? what will happen to it?
45. amalchummar (Posts: 6; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)
i heard that sony xperia phones dont have gud battery life...... they die out within 7 hours...also if ur watchn a 1080p movie or hard gamin it lasts even shorter!!!! Is it true???
46. ice9web (Posts: 3; Member since: 09 Feb 2013)
yeah its nice the camera is perfect, and it has so many features... i bought xperia acro s - last december 22, 2012 and after less than a month of usage it just won't Power ON :( after the 100% complete charge,
then i went to Xperia store (3F Gaisano Mall of Davao City) where I bought it, they didn't even have any Android service unit... this problem "won't power ON" happens to me 3x. The technician on the service center said he just charge it again and it will power ON. i did the same on the 2nd time it happen to me - charge it for more then 12 hours still won't power ON. went back again to the service center, and he said its powering ON when he charge it. now for the 3rd time it happened again I'm irritated to keep on going back to service center, they decided they will replace the board on the unit.
and they can even assure me when I will get back my unit... they just said 1 to 2 weeks. how sad! i spend so much money 24,890 pesos on bad sony Xperia service :(
now i don't have any smart phones to use for my work :(
47. ice9web (Posts: 3; Member since: 09 Feb 2013)
I never thought I would regret buying this Xperia Acro S :( ...
i bought that mobile last december 22, 2012 and in less than a month of usage it just won't Power ON :( after the 100% charge. see here for details --- ice9web.blogspot.com/2013/02/sony-xperia-make-believe-1-year-warranty.html
48. waelshoukry (Posts: 1; Member since: 02 Mar 2013)
The phone's performance is a bit buggy. I've had mine for almost 6 months, and am not pleased with the performance. The camera quality is alright, and somewhat similiar to my previous HTC Incredible S's 8 MP camera. Using the 12 MP option on the Sony is not always a good idea because the picture size is not wide-screen and doesn't eveen cover the phone's screen. The quick launch option is a mixed bag and works once every 2 or 3 tries. It IS waterproof and I tried it and it was good. But the phone freezes every now and then at times when I urgently need to execute a certain task like make a call. Not sure if this is a common thing across android phones, but I expect a bit more reliability out of a phone with this price tag.
|Display||4.3 inches, 720 x 1280 pixels (342 ppi) TFT|
Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 MSM8260, Dual core, 1500 MHz, Scorpion processor
1024 MB RAM
|Size||4.96 x 2.60 x 0.47 inches|
(126 x 66 x 11.9 mm)
5.19 oz (147 g)
|Battery||1910 mAh, 6.66 hours talk time|