Fatties: Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are the thickest high-end phones in years

Fatties: Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are the thickest high-end phones in years
Announced yesterday at MWC 2018, Sony's Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are introducing a new(ish) design language. Compared to the previous high-end smartphones made by Sony, the Xperia XZ2 series brings 18:9 displays, thinner bezels, and rear fingerprint scanners, thus looking quite different from the handsets the company has released in recent years. 

The Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact also bring a weird novelty (if we can call it that): at 11.1 mm and 12.1 mm, respectively, both models are really thick for 2018. As you'll notice in our size comparison here, Sony's new handsets are way thicker than most current flagship phones. In fact, we don't remember seeing any relevant high-end phone with a thickness over 10 mm in years.     

Admittedly, the edges of the Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are on the thinner side, as both models have curved backs that become thicker towards the center. Still, it's quite odd to see such chubby high-end smartphones in this day and age. 

The thickness of the new Xperia family could have been justified by large batteries. However, at 3180 mAh (XZ2) and 2870 mAh (XZ2 Compact), these batteries are normal for the phones' sizes, or even smaller (for example, Samsung managed to pack a 3500 mAh battery in the 8.5mm-thin Galaxy S9+). 


Maybe the thickness of the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact is related to some of their new features, like the enhanced cameras, or the Dynamic Vibration System? We don't know yet, but we're asking Sony to see if we can get any answer on why its new phones are going against the let's go thinner trend without an obvious reason for doing so. 

Update. Here's Sony's answer on why the two new Xperias are thick (we wouldn't call this a proper explanation though):


What do you think about the Sony Xperia XZ2 and Xperia XZ2 Compact? Is their thickness a letdown, or are you fine with it?

Related phones

Xperia XZ2
  • Display 5.7" 1080 x 2160 pixels
  • Camera 19 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Octa-core, 2800 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3180 mAh(23h 3G talk time)
Xperia XZ2 Compact
  • Display 5.0" 1080 x 2160 pixels
  • Camera 19 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, Octa-core, 2800 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2870 mAh(20.8h 3G talk time)

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57 Comments

1. Cat97

Posts: 1617; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

No one would have complained if they were also short and narrow, or if they had OIS, or large batteries, but they do not, they are also large. Worst of both worlds. Compare the XZ1 Compact with XZ2 Compact...

8. sgodsell

Posts: 6594; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

10mm is only the thickness of 10 stacked dimes. That is nothing in my opinion. Besides the battery sizes are fine for the newer and more efficient SD 845. Besides look at the iPhone 8 which has a smaller and a much lower resolution display, and a much smaller battery. So I would take the new XZ2 compact over the iPhone 8 any day of the week.

10. sgodsell

Posts: 6594; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Yet this XZ2 is physically smaller than an iPhone 8, but the XZ2 has a larger higher resolution display over the larger iPhone 8. Oh, and don't forget the larger XZ2 battery by 1000 MHA over the iPhone 8, and it's still smaller than an iPhone 8.

16. rouyal

Posts: 1541; Member since: Jan 05, 2018

Smaller than IPhone? Sure until you look at the thickness which is almost 2 iphones thick.

46. sgodsell

Posts: 6594; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Are you trying to look that stupid. The iPhone 8 is 7.3mm thick. This new XZ2 compact is 10 mm. So clearly it's not even close to 2 iPhones thick.

14. rouyal

Posts: 1541; Member since: Jan 05, 2018

The xz2 looks like a prepaid budget phone, super thick, will wobble when laid down, circa 2013 design, Sony’s half baked buggy firmware (personally experienced on xz1c), and won’t have much selection in the way of aftermarket cases and screen protectors. Battery life is determined more by firmware than looking at specs on paper. iPhone 8 is the obvious choice if you aren’t a biased android child.

29. Feanor

Posts: 1269; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

What was your problem with firmware? My Xperia XZ Premium, which runs the same firmware, has being from the beginning the absolutely most reliable phone I had in my life. I never faced a single bug.

39. rouyal

Posts: 1541; Member since: Jan 05, 2018

Buggy may have been too strong of a term. I’ll call it ‘quirky’. Off top of my head, the data indicators for WiFi or lte would appear and disappear causing the row of status icons to bounce...a lot and very annoying. The camera, instead of using the normal android image filenames like “img-date-time” would be like “dsc0001”. Couldn’t use Google camera app, or any app that used camera api 2 because Sony removed it. In the US, needed to flash international firmware to use fingerprint scanner. Couldn’t remove the huge nfc icon in status bar. Those are just a few that I remember, and when looking them up, the quirks go back years, so Sony had no intention of fixing them.

54. VZWuser76

Posts: 4974; Member since: Mar 04, 2010

On the topic of the WiFi and LTE indicators, is it possible the reason they we're appearing and disappearing because you were in a low/bad signal area? Perhaps they did that on purpose to get your attention, as it fighting to find a signal would kill a battery much quicker than in a decent signal area. So you could put it in airplane mode to save battery.

2. Prajjwal

Posts: 16; Member since: Aug 03, 2016

The LG G4 seems to be the closest to the 10 mm mark for flagships as far as I remember, in "recent years" @9.4mm, barring Sony's already chunky compacts

3. delta

Posts: 80; Member since: Jan 29, 2015

No problem with "thickness" phones, but the lack of audio jack it's a no no.

23. phaneendra_92

Posts: 64; Member since: Oct 12, 2013

Dont worry buddy in future u wont see a phone with 3.5 mm jack... Now 3.5 mm is auxillary tech for every brand any time soon every brand remove 3.5 mm jack forother purposes ...

4. Ciro1900

Posts: 591; Member since: Dec 17, 2017

If you want the best and the latest in technology is the price to pay, if you want obsolete garbage this is not your mobile

6. Florin.T

Posts: 310; Member since: Dec 16, 2013

5. Furkan

Posts: 552; Member since: Feb 25, 2017

even S8 Note8 S9 are thick. V30 and Nokia 8 sirocco are very good

7. IAMBLCKJ3ZUS

Posts: 395; Member since: Sep 29, 2015

Honestly Sony did better then Samsung in feature wise. People skip that it is the first phone to do 4k hdr and 960fps at full HD. Those are some mighty accomplishments.

9. jellmoo

Posts: 2523; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

The Blackberry Priv was slimmer at 9.4mm and it had a bigger battery and a slideout keyboard. I have no idea what Sony was thinking here.

11. Feanor

Posts: 1269; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Talking about journalism... It's not so difficult to come to a conclusion why they're so thick; By moving the camera sensor from above the display to behind the display you add thickness. Now why these are thicker than other phones with cameras behind the screen, obviously it comes down to further specifics, like maybe LCDs are thicker than AMOLEDs, or Sony 19mp sensor is longer than the competing solutions, or most likely both. Definitely it has nothing to do with battery capacity. The battery capacity increase from the previous generation is most likely a result of the added thickness rather than the cause of it.

50. Cat97

Posts: 1617; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Are you serious ? They could have put a camera bump if necessary. The added thickness is the result of being caught with their pants down technology-wise. They didn't do their homework in miniaturization of their components, otherwise at this thickness the batteries could have been at least 10% larger.

51. Feanor

Posts: 1269; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

I'm very serious. By adding the necessary thickness for the screen without a bump, you create more space for a bigger battery (which the XZ2 has in comparison to the XZ1). What is the point of having a thinner device with camera bump? It still takes same space and it is more uncomfortable to hold and it makes no space for a bigger battery. Thin phones with large camera bumps are just cheats. I don't say that Sony is excused for having made such a thick device, I just say that they chose to do so in order to fit their display and camera instead of creating a bump.

52. worldpeace

Posts: 3049; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

It's just your reasoning that's very weak, that's why he said that. 1. Most smartphones also got "camera behind the screen" 2. Yes LCD are thicker, but probably only by 0.5mm. 3. Camera bump on other smartphones is only around 1mm This phone is like 3-4mm thicker than other flagships (maybe doesnt sound like much, but it's literally 50% thicker than other flagships)

12. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3040; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Easier to hold. As the late Michael Vale, aka Sam Breakstone, said in his commercials "Not thick enough!!" One question for all the kids and millennials - why do you care so much about thickness if y'all put cases on your phones? An Otterbox is what - 3/4" thick?

40. Jason2k13

Posts: 1436; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

I would rather put a case on a thin phone, than a thick one. See how stupid you sound? Like why would i want my phone to be even more thicker?

13. middlehead

Posts: 408; Member since: May 12, 2014

Over-focus on thinness might be the worst thing to happen to cell phones.

15. josephnero

Posts: 773; Member since: Nov 16, 2011

Edges are 6 mm

21. phaneendra_92

Posts: 64; Member since: Oct 12, 2013

In sony nobody cares about ergonomics than negetives...

17. monoke

Posts: 1100; Member since: Mar 14, 2015

Still using a Z3 here at 7.3 mm thick with 3100 battery. I gotta say these are the ugliest pair of cubbies that Sony has ever designed! .. Fire the new designer please!

18. eelpout

Posts: 31; Member since: Oct 13, 2016

hmm, seems pretty obvious if you watch Sony's own design video that they think adding the "humpback" is more ergonomic. Thus inducing millenial reviewers everywhere to utter the phrase "feels good in the hand" over and over and....

19. DronGupta

Posts: 42; Member since: Sep 09, 2015

Stop using word ‘high end’ with stupid sony phones. I don’t even know why the hell are they making squres box like phone year after year.

30. Feanor

Posts: 1269; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Because they have great software and software support and unique selling points; first with waterproofing, first to offer super slow motion, still the only ones to offer integrated noise cancellation (meanwhile just HTC 11 has it) and now first to offer HDR 4K video recording. If Sony hadn't brought waterproofing and super slow motion recording, Samsung wouldn't do either. Most likely we'll see Samsung following Sony to offering 4K HDR recording on their Note 9, because Sony brought it now. You don't need to like Sony, but your comment is ignorant.

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