Introduction


The Sony Xperia E1 is a device for music lovers on a budget. A phone with a dedicated Walkman button and a rich music app, its music capabilities make it stand out in a fiercely competitive market of affordable Android smartphones. It also has time on its side, as it’s one of the first devices to ship with a new and faster Snapdragon 200 system chip. In addition to all this, the Xperia E1 is also a very compact and lightweight phone, a virtue that becomes less and less common nowadays.

There is a fly in the ointment, though - the phone only has a 3-megapixel camera with no flash. Is that a deal-breaker, and are there any other hidden caveats? Stay with us as we answer these questions right below.

In the box:

  • USB Cable
  • Wall Charger
  • In-ear headphones
  • User manual

Design

Forget about design intricacies - the Xperia E1 looks like a device sold in Dollar Tree with its extremely cheap feeling plastic. At the same time, though, it’s also compact, and lightweight.

The first thing you notice about the Sony Xperia E1 is that it’s built out of such low quality plastic that it makes the phone feel like a cheap toy from the Dollar Tree store. This very cheap feel is a bit of a shock even for an affordable device, as nowadays we have similarly low-priced devices like Nokia’s Lumia 52x series or the Moto G that push the envelope with sleeker look and wide color options. Despite its negligence for looks and build materials, it’s also true that the phone is fairly tightly put together and does not screak under pressure.

In terms of pure size, the Xperia E1 is a very compact and pocketable phone (it measures just 62.4mm, or 2.46 inches, wide). As such, it is nearly perfect for single-handed use, as your thumb can practically reach its every corner. In addition, the E1 is also of very light weight, tipping the scales at just 120g (4.23oz). And while in terms of thickness, it is a fairly chubby little phone with a body girth measure of 12mm (0.47”), its compressed overall size makes this less of an issue than it would have been for a larger phone.

Up front, you have just the Sony logo on top, the screen, and no physical buttons - instead, the device uses on-screen buttons for navigation around Android. All the physical keys are located on the left: a tiny lock key, and a volume rocker above it, and while both are clicky and responsive, they are made of that same extremely low-grade plastic, which is disappointing.

We ought to separately mention the unique Walkman key located on the top of the phone. Since the phone is so compact, it’s not hard to reach for it, and it’s also clicky enough. This key is specifically tailored to control the music listening and it integrates tightly with Sony’s Walkman music app. You can customize it to your liking, but by default, long pressing it starts the Walkman app, pushing it once pauses or resumes the current song, and double-pressing it switches to the next song. It’s a neat touch for music lovers, who can control their music without firing up the phone.


Sony Xperia E1

Sony Xperia E1

Dimensions

4.65 x 2.46 x 0.47 inches

118 x 62.4 x 12 mm

Weight

4.23 oz (120 g)

Sony Xperia E

Sony Xperia E

Dimensions

4.47 x 2.43 x 0.43 inches

113.5 x 61.8 x 11 mm

Weight

4.08 oz (116 g)

HTC Desire 300

HTC Desire 300

Dimensions

5.19 x 2.61 x 0.4 inches

131.78 x 66.23 x 10.12 mm

Weight

4.23 oz (120 g)

Samsung Galaxy Core

Samsung Galaxy Core

Dimensions

5.09 x 2.66 x 0.35 inches

129.3 x 67.6 x 8.95 mm

Weight

4.37 oz (124 g)

Sony Xperia E1

Sony Xperia E1

Dimensions

4.65 x 2.46 x 0.47 inches

118 x 62.4 x 12 mm

Weight

4.23 oz (120 g)

Sony Xperia E

Sony Xperia E

Dimensions

4.47 x 2.43 x 0.43 inches

113.5 x 61.8 x 11 mm

Weight

4.08 oz (116 g)

HTC Desire 300

HTC Desire 300

Dimensions

5.19 x 2.61 x 0.4 inches

131.78 x 66.23 x 10.12 mm

Weight

4.23 oz (120 g)

Samsung Galaxy Core

Samsung Galaxy Core

Dimensions

5.09 x 2.66 x 0.35 inches

129.3 x 67.6 x 8.95 mm

Weight

4.37 oz (124 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page







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17 Comments

1. StraightEdgeNexus

Posts: 3689; Member since: Feb 14, 2014

Why sony displays suck. I tried a galaxy Y and a xperia E. Galaxy had a great screen for the price with good colors, contrast and above average viewing angles. The xperia was plain terrible. Many people complain sammy displays have poor pixel density compared to sony and others but in reality pixel density matters the least for average joes.

12. docxx

Posts: 63; Member since: Feb 27, 2014

at least you don't need to restart the phone every day like the hanging buggy sammys, a lot of people appreciate the smooth running sony devices.

2. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

OMG INFINITI QX70 IN THE PICTURES YEEEH Anyway, judging from those pictures the display doesn't seem to be as horrible as they state in the review. Though I have to see it in real life before saying anything

3. datphoneguy

Posts: 155; Member since: Sep 15, 2013

Wow, even for a budget phone that screen is awful - I can practically count all the pixels...

5. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Resolution is the one thing in that display that isn't that bad. 233 PPI it's more than in galaxy S 2 for example. Yes I know it's an old phone but that PPI is great for a budget phone

4. StraightEdgeNexus

Posts: 3689; Member since: Feb 14, 2014

Pixel density doesnt matter. If its above 230ppi then its fine. Except when viewing low resolution images.

6. Lt.Green

Posts: 397; Member since: Mar 13, 2014

They should've called it 'E2' to be consistent with the others (Z2, M2, T2 Ultra).

7. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

those that bear the "1" are apparently awful devices. there's the z1 with the sub par display and here's the e1. maybe they're not really supposed to exist. they just needed to sell away those stocks of displays they have.

8. Zhephyr

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

I suggest SONY continue to iterate this line> A Sony E2 Music perhaps I think its great if sony can create a phone with this specs: - 4-4.3 inches - 8 megapixel camera rear cam + 5 megapixels front facing one -Decent processor -1-2gbRam -8Gb built in Storage -A better body design(apply sonyz1 like design) -Special music buttons -Dust&water resistant -a decent Battery -and bonus LTE capability and dont forget the special LED light.a small circle one is enough or like the one on xperia M I would really Buy one :D

11. PorkyBurger

Posts: 585; Member since: May 18, 2013

Duude, sounds like you want a mid-ranger. Sony Xperia E series ARE BUDGET SMARTPHONES ONLY. LOL.

13. Zhephyr

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

its just a suggestion.and i know i am looking for a mid-ranger.The specs i mention are the specs i'm looking for a real music dedicated phone.

15. imparanoic

Posts: 88; Member since: Oct 15, 2012

z1 compact

16. Zhephyr

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

Z1compact is to expensive to be a budget device. its almost price as same as the xperiz z1 .but yeah thats my idea of a great phone minus the bulky body..the z1compact body it thicker than z1 and z2

9. jsdechavez

Posts: 799; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

I think the feature set goes well with the price. This will do well in the right maskets. Besides, build seems better than a cheap Samsung. I'd never touch a mid-range/low-end Samsung.

10. fireblade

Posts: 717; Member since: Dec 27, 2013

this phone is crap. Look at Moto G

14. mercorp

Posts: 1045; Member since: Jan 28, 2012

In singapore xiaomi sells the redmi for $169...and the specs are way better than the e1. Still,at least sony tried their best...and it doesn't really deserve such a score!

17. Zhephyr

Posts: 25; Member since: Feb 24, 2014

xiamo looks great but are way to big..i hope they would create a 4.3 - 4.5 one ..A XiaomiMIni or XiamoCompact.
Xperia E1
  • Display 4.0" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 3 MP
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 200, Dual-core, 1200 MHz
  • Storage 4 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 1750 mAh(8.68h 3G talk time)

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