Sony's first 5G Xperia flagship may debut at MWC 2020

Sony's first 5G Xperia flagship may debut at MWC 2020
Sony confirmed plans to announce new smartphones at MWC 2020 when it sent out invites to a press conference last week and, while it hasn’t yet revealed which devices are coming, a new report sheds some light on the matter. 

The Xperia 1.1 could be Sony's first 5G phone


Sony is going to unveil its next flagship smartphone at Barcelona in late February, Chinese media is claiming today. The device in question leaked out for the first time earlier this month and is expected to replace last year's Xperia 1 that debuted at MWC 2019.

How the smartphone will be marketed remains to be seen – rumored names include Xperia 1.1 and Xperia 5 Plus – but for Sony, the product is expected to represent quite the milestone. That’s because it’ll reportedly be the first Xperia-branded 5G device.

If true, the presence of Qualcomm’s high-end Snapdragon 865 paired with the Snapdragon X55 5G modem seems almost guaranteed. This combination, for reference, is also expected to make an appearance inside the Galaxy S20, OnePlus 8 Pro, and LG G9 ThinQ, among other devices.
The amount of RAM and storage Sony has planned remains to be seen, but near-stock Android 10 is to be expected straight out of the box. The latter will be combined with a massive 6.6-inch 4K HDR OLED display with a 21:9 aspect ratio and uniform bezels. 

Other external characteristics include front-facing stereo speakers and a 3.5mm headphone jack, a feature Sony hasn’t included since the Xperia XZ2 arrived in early 2018.

An upgraded quad-camera setup is expected


As well as everything mentioned above, Sony is preparing an upgraded quadruple-camera setup for the back of the smartphone that’ll sit in the top corner. It’ll apparently consist of a Time-of-Flight sensor accompanied by a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle shooter and a 12-megapixel telephoto camera that may support 3x optical zoom.
The highlight of the package, however, is expected to be the main sensor. Sony already manufacturers a range of cameras with high megapixel counts and today’s report suggests the mobile business is finally going to take advantage of this by adopting either a 48-megapixel or 64-megapixel sensor.

Little is known about the main camera at the moment but it’s claimed support for 8K video will be present, allowing Sony to better compete with Samsung’s Galaxy S20 series.

Sony Xperia 1.1 announcement, release date, price


The Sony Xperia 1.1 or Xperia 5 Plus will be officially introduced on Monday, February 24, at MWC 2020 in Barcelona. Rumor has it a couple of mid-range smartphones to replace last year’s Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 Plus could be unveiled too.

Sony has an awful track record when it comes to launching its phones in a timeline manner. This year is expected to be no different and, as such, pre-orders and shipments for the Xperia 1.1 aren’t expected to begin until May and June respectively.

As for pricing, today’s report claims Sony is going to price the phone above 6,000 yuan ($867) in China. That means a $999 price tag could once again be on the cards, although that’s not necessarily a bad thing because it means Sony won’t be charging extra for 5G network support.

On a slightly unrelated note, it's worth pointing out that the company has plans to launch a second flagship later in the year. Details aren't yet available but it'll most likely succeed the compact Xperia 5 and be based on the Xperia 1.1. As such, it might be worth waiting a little longer if you're on the lookout for a smaller model.

Related phones

Xperia 1 II
  • Display 6.5 inches 3840 x 1644 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Quad camera) 8 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 8GB RAM
  • Storage 256GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 4000 mAh
  • OS Android 11

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