Call quality

The Galaxy Alpha offers a subpar earpiece, while Z3 Compact does stellar on both ends.

The Galaxy Alpha's call quality isn’t all that pleasing, mainly because voices on both ends of the line have a robotic tone to them. Even though the earpiece is pretty powerful, we have difficulty in trying to comprehend those robotic toned voices. When it comes to the mics, however, they relay our voice to the other end in a very clean and loud manner.

Call quality is very good on the Xperia Z3 Compact. Voices in the earpiece are sufficiently loud, and clarity is good, but not perfect - you can recognize the natural tonality of your caller’s voices, but they sound a bit muffled. On the other end of the line, call quality is excellent. The two noise-canceling microphones convey voices clearly and loudly.

Battery

Not that the Alpha doesn't squeeze respectable battery life, but the Z3 Compact has amazing one.

Don’t let the Galaxy Alpha removable 1860 mAh battery disappoint you, seeing that it delivers excellent battery life from a full charge. For normal usage, we’re able to get close to a solid 1.5 days of operation from it, which even lends itself in being a long-lasting thing for power users. In our own battery benchmark test, the Galaxy Alpha achieves a time of 7 hours, 50 minutes – a tally that puts it in the elite club of phones with excellent battery life.

Nothing is more excellent than the Xperia Z3 Compact, however. Sony is the undisputed king of battery life with its recent smartphones, and the munchkin just killed once again. The rather large 2600mAh juicer of the Z3 Compact allowed it to achieve more than 10 hours on our battery benchmark, placing it in the top 3 brand-name handsets we've ever measured, zipping past all phablets out there, and their enormous batteries.

We measure battery life by running a custom web-script, designed to replicate the power consumption of typical real-life usage. All devices that go through the test have their displays set at 200-nit brightness.

hours Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy Alpha
7h 50 min (Average)
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
10h 2 min (Excellent)

minutes Lower is better
Samsung Galaxy Alpha
108
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
208

Conclusion


Geez, it was a tough battle between those two, seeing that they sport very similar specs and performance. The Galaxy Alpha has a thinner body than the Z3 Compact, but the latter is thicker for a reason, flaunting a water-tight chassis, and a large battery that delivers record endurance.

The Alpha is the winner when it comes to screen quality – it can offer these oversaturated colors that the AMOLEDs are known for, but can also be pretty accurate in its basic mode. The Z3 Compact, on the other hand, has one of the coldest screens we've seen. When it comes to camera quality, the Galaxy Alpha has faster focus, as well as a more versatile 4K video recording with better audio, yet the picture quality is on par with the Z3 Compact outdoors, and slightly worse in low-light.

The Z3 Compact's extra design feature – its stereo speakers at the front – are arguably a more useful addition than Samsung's stand-out fingerprint scanner, too. The Galaxy Alpha also loses the battery life and call quality match, as well as the price battle – the Sony Z3 Compact is currently $150 cheaper than the Alpha, so you will be voting with your wallet as well.


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