New Xperia XZ3 carries Sony's largest display on a modern flagship yet, and it's OLED!

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Check out our thorough Xperia XZ3 hands-on preview here

With today's announcement of the Xperia XZ3, after the XZ2 got unveiled as recently as the MWC expo back in February, Sony keeps the bi-annual flagship tradition alive. Here is all you should know about Sony's third flagship for the year when we account for the XZ2 Premium.

Design and display

Strong 7000-series aluminum frame, the first 6" OLED display on an Xperia

Sony enlarges the screen panel to the whopping 6 inches, as is fashionable these days, with a tall 18:9 aspect ratio, making the Z3 display the largest on a flagship Xperia so far. Not only that, but the screen is an OLED one! Yes, Sony touts it as the first "QHD+ HDR OLED display powered by Sony Bravia TV image processing technology." What that means in practice, remains to be seen, but it does support the highest HDR specs one can find. The cover glass is quite curved at the sides, leaving the impression of a flexible OLED screen, like the ones Samsung uses for the edges of its Galaxy S or Note lines. 


Less than the XZ2 Premium, a step above the XZ2

You can still expect nothing but the lightning fast Snapdragon 845 chipset, but there's no move to 6GB RAM as rumored, it's the same 4GB RAM/64GB storage config with up to 512GB MicroSDXC card support. A 3330mAh battery capacity with Qi wireless charging is a very small upgrade relative to the XZ2's 3180 mAh. Bummer, but Sony's phones usually have very, very frugal displays, resulting in surprisingly good endurance out of average battery capacities, so we keep our hopes high for the XZ3 as well.

Cameras and audio

Sony doesn't steal the XZ2 Premium's dual camera thunder

The Xperia XZ2 carries a single 19MP camera on its back, with F/2.0 aperture, and the XZ3 has the same 19MP sensor. The front camera also gets a bump, to 13MP this time, and this setup, sans a second rear camera, is what the XZ2 Premium carries, so the samples from the XZ3 might look pretty close. We still have 4K HDR video recording, though, and the signature Sony 960fps slow-motion capabilities.

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Adding to the multimedia chops of the phone such as the 4K HDR video recording prowess, comes the enhanced audio playback. The "Hi-Res Audio" is this time delivered by larger S-Force Front Surround sound speakers, that widen the bass and treble frequencies' range compared to previous Xperias.

Price and release date

Hardly a bargain

Those who upgrade from last year's Xperias will find a few minor hardware upgrades from the Z2 and a more refined design more enticing perhaps, but the Z2 users will probably wait, not least because of the pricing. 

The XZ3 is landing for the whopping $900 in the US on September 24th, though Sony does cushion the blow with an Xperia Ear Duo bundle over at Amazon where the phone will be sold. In addition, the phone comes with Android 9.0 Pie out of the box, and a special one-handed UI feature, called Side Sense, which makes navigating the grand display easier by just double-tapping the side of the device to get to key applications. Any takers?

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