Sony Xperia M4 Aqua hands-on

The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is the new mid-ranger for Sony: a phone with water-protection, the familiar omnibalance design language, and the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop skinned with the company’s light custom user interface.

We got to spend some time with the Xperia M4 Aqua at MWC 2015, and we’re eager to share our first hands-on impressions with the phone.

Design and Display

When you look at it from apart, it’s not hard to mistake the Xperia M4 Aqua for the more expensive, flagship Xperia Z3 model. Go up close, though, and you start noticing the differences. Rather than featuring a metal frame, the M4 Aqua sports a lighter, plastic body with plastic on the back as well (instead of the glass on the Xperia Z3).

Save for its plastic nature, there’s a lot that we like about this phone: it’s light and fairly slim, with a svelte profile. The exact dimensions measure 5.73 x 2.86 x 0.29 inches (145.5 x 72.6 x 7.3 mm).

The Xperia M4 Aqua features a 5-inch display with a 720 x 1280-pixel resolution (pixel density stands at 294ppi), and at first sight it’s a fairly decent display when it comes to color reproduction.

Processor and Memory

Sony’s new mid-ranger sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 (MSM8939) system chip with an octa-core 1.7GHz Cortex A53 array. It’s a 64-bit chip and makes perfect use of the 64-bit support in Android 5.0 Lollipop. There’s also 2GB of RAM which is a welcome addition for such an affordable device.

Internal storage is set at 16GB with the option to expand on this with microSD cards of up to 32 gigs.


The 13-megapixel camera on the Xperia M4 Aqua is a statement that the phone has some higher ambitions as a good snapper. Megapixels don’t tell the whole story, but in this price segment, this is usually the measure most manufacturers use. On top of the main cam there is a wide-aperture, f/2 lens. The main cam is capable of recording 1080p video as well. There’s also a 5-megapixel selfie cam.


All in all, the Xperia M4 Aqua is a well-built device with a very likable design and a svelte appearance. The price for the phone is set at $335 (299 euro) off contract and the phone should arrive on store shelves this Spring in more than 80 countries (no word on U.S. availability, though).

Related phones

Xperia M4 Aqua
  • Display 5.0" 720 x 1280 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 615, Octa-core, 1500 MHz
  • Storage 16 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2400 mAh(13.28h 3G talk time)



1. LGisgood

Posts: 833; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

NOT BAD! only those bezels top and bottom is the problem to me, overall is a great phone

2. may_czos

Posts: 955; Member since: Nov 22, 2014

Bezels, huge bezels again. This thing is as big as Z3 (which has 5,2" display) and almost as big as LG G3 with 5,5" display. It's huge. I'm afraid those bezels may hurt the sales.

10. josephnero

Posts: 783; Member since: Nov 16, 2011

like iphones don't sell because of bezels?

11. LGisgood

Posts: 833; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

Apple has its own market. iOS lovers have no choice! sony has many competitors like LG, SAMSUNG, HTC, HUAWIE, LENOVO, ALCATEL, SHARP, AND ALL OTHER SMARTPHONE BRANDS THAT ARE USING ANDROID O .S. have you realized the difference ?

14. Genza

Posts: 576; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

have you realized the difference ? Yes but the bezels on Z3 is still better than Samsung (GS5 & GS6) and HTC (M8 & M9) flagship.

21. maccess

Posts: 742; Member since: Jan 16, 2013

Retard alert!!

13. Genza

Posts: 576; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

The G3 is made of plastic and there is no IP certification, stereo speakersand Z3 also has little bit bigger battery in thinner body. Z3 maybe not the king of screen ratio but Z3 is a engineering marvels because even with IP certification, stereo speaker and big battery in thin body the Z3 still has better screen ratio than most flagship such as M8, GS5, Lumia 830, iPhone 6 and even the brand new GS6 (check gsmarena GS6 specification for the confirmation).

20. loyd112

Posts: 13; Member since: Aug 23, 2014

hey actually even though alot of site s claim it's plastic sony's website says it's a metal frame which confuses me, but i believe its a metal frame that felt cheap to the reviewers......its also an ip68 certified phone

24. Genza

Posts: 576; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

If talking about M4 Aqua sony's website says it's a metalic frame not metal frame.

22. maccess

Posts: 742; Member since: Jan 16, 2013

Z3 has better screen ratio than s6??? You need eye surgery son..

23. FarmerStyle

Posts: 37; Member since: May 17, 2014

Z3 5.2 inches (~70.9% screen-to-body ratio) S6 5.1 inches (~70.7% screen-to-body ratio)

25. Genza

Posts: 576; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

I think you are the one who need eye surgery son... because it seems your eyes can't see the truth.

3. TheHossein

Posts: 93; Member since: Sep 27, 2014

Very nice phone for this price , I like the design , too . And I see that sony removed the USB cover for Its water resistance , good job ! Any benchmarks yet?

5. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4769; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

Check the video again...the mini USB flap is there in all it's glory.

6. Rhinoface

Posts: 179; Member since: Dec 05, 2014

No, no micro USB flap.

9. Venkatramanan

Posts: 327; Member since: Aug 15, 2014

Micro SD it seems.

4. kerginaldo17 unregistered

Sony is regressing? After awesomes Z2 and Z3 comes with worse features...Sony this is a great company and can innovate more.

7. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

Beautiful low end device. Wish SONY would of launch their FLAGSHIP in the Spring instead of the FALL.

19. may_czos

Posts: 955; Member since: Nov 22, 2014

I'd say it's a midranger.

8. MacWiNux

Posts: 128; Member since: Jan 07, 2014

woohoo great midranger since SP

12. Chuck007

Posts: 1411; Member since: Mar 02, 2014

Should've sold for 100USD less in select regions like China and India where the smartphone market is booming. Otherwise, this is a pretty good buy. All the best for Sony.

15. Genza

Posts: 576; Member since: Mar 12, 2014

On paper M4 Aqua is a super mid-range phone.

16. darealist

Posts: 107; Member since: Feb 25, 2015

Looks better than that fugly awful S6.

17. XaErO

Posts: 353; Member since: Sep 25, 2012

@John Your videos are pretty good explaining however I have always noticed the camera is always focused on something else other than the device itself OR the device is not aligned to camera OR the camera keeps on re-focusing on the object many a time during the video. No offence buddy, but that kinda distracts a lot !! I thought to inform you this time !!

18. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Nice specced phone but I think this is a renamed Z1 with few new hardware and some +/- here and there.

26. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I wish Sony would convert this to a windows 8.1 smartphone

27. kaziqta

Posts: 3; Member since: May 23, 2015

that comment made me want to hang myself :)

28. kaziqta

Posts: 3; Member since: May 23, 2015

I have it already, the device is really good, comes with a good price... got it for 200 Euros back home in Bulgaria on contract... it makes the 2 days of battery life with moderate/normal usage, heavy usage... 1 day, but hey :) that device kicks ass, come on!

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