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Sony Xperia SL Review

Sony Xperia SL 7

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Call quality:

Sony Xperia SL Review
Call quality with the Xperia SL is very good, with clear voices in the earpiece on our end, which could use more volume, though. The other side said we sounded very clean, with strong volume, and the noise-canceling mics managed to weed out the ambient sounds while we were talking.

The loudspeaker is very strong, as we mentioned, meaning that it will be unlikely you’ll miss a call. As long as the sound is turned on.


Another feature in the Sony Xperia SL is the improved lithium-polymer technology that allows the device to charge in half the time of a regular battery, but only with the EP851 adapter (sold separately), whereas the retail box has the regular EP800 one.

Sony says that just 10 minutes of charging time will juice the Xperia S enough for an hour of talk time, and 30 minutes will get you up to 80% charge. After the 80% threshold is reached, the phone starts charging normally to 100%, in order to preserve the battery.

The 1750 mAh unit is rated for the very good 8 hours and 15 minutes talk time and 33 hours of music playback. 17 days of standby is also good, yet if the screen is on a lot, the phone drains the battery like a typical Android high-end for a day, day and a half, depending how you stress it. Video playback time has been improved compared to the Xperia S, though, squeezing half an hour more out of the SL, for 6 hours and 30 minutes rated playback time.


With the Xperia SL, Sony introduces only marginal improvements over the Xperia S, like a slightly faster processor and new color schemes. It is shipping with Android ICS out of the box, which the Xperia S also received, though, and both now support DivX/Xvid video playback.

The pricing in the US hovers around the $450 mark and below, whereas the Xperia S can be found for around $400, so the only thing you might want the Xperia SL over the S, save for the 0.2GHz faster processor, would be the color choices – that pink one is a chick magnet. We kid, but for this pricing the Xperia SL is a very good Android phone with fast processor, HD screen and zippy, high-res camera that shoots nice pictures and video.

In that sub-$450 price range you can't find many phones with the Xperia SL specs, so Sony is doing the right thing to attract customer attention towards what would otherwise be considered a lame upgrade.

The Galaxy Nexus is a formidable opponent, with its $350 price tag, dual-core processor, HD screen, and rapid Android updates. You can also look at the Xperia P, which has a smaller screen, but a very bright display, though with some color gamut issues. The Samsung Galaxy S II is also a good option, but it doesn't have an HD screen. The HTC One S costs about the same as the XL, with a faster processor, slimmer and lighter, but it doesn't sport a high-res screen either, and has less internal memory with no expansion slot.

Software version of the reviewed unit: 6.1.A.1.2.45

Sony Xperia SL Video Review:


  • 32GB memory makes the phone good value for money
  • Fast camera with good photo and video quality
  • HD display with very high pixel density
  • Distinctive design with a transparent illuminated strip
  • Good call quality


  • The capacitive button dots are hard to spot and not responsive
  • Chubby for a 4.3-incher
  • Screen's horizontal viewing angles could be better
PhoneArena rating:
7 Good
User rating:
9 8 Reviews

  • Options

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 07:16 15

1. wendygarett (unregistered)

Lets make this phones to James bond's girl :p

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 07:33 16

2. shandesilva (Posts: 79; Member since: 28 Mar 2012)

surely this deserves more than 7!!....PA has been bought by apple or what?? this is ridiculous...so much for a fair review.

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:04 6

6. eisenbricher (Posts: 973; Member since: 09 Aug 2012)

I think they got lost in the alphabet jungle of Sony.. t,j,s,sl,tx,p,u,v ~

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:51

10. sats.mine2k4 (banned) (Posts: 208; Member since: 10 Aug 2012)

Actually no 7 is perhaps right
SL pros
1. The best display in the market.
2. A very good camera.
3. Beautiful design.
4. Andorid ICS

1. 18 month old processor which when combined with Sony's custom UI makes for a horrible experience. You will need to root and install an AOSP build to bring it to usable.
2. Made of plastic... so build quality is not great.
3. Non-replaceable battery + no sd card slot...

posted on 01 Dec 2012, 02:31

26. spikie (Posts: 1; Member since: 01 Dec 2012)

don't iphones have Non-replaceable battery + no sd card slot...

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:54

11. jan25 (Posts: 470; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)

4.3, S3 chipset, abysmal viewing angles and still on ICS. 7 is about right. i don't know why would someone not consider the G Nexus or the HTC One S over this.

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 13:21 2

18. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)

i dont know about the garbage nexus but maybe the one s for sure lolz

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 15:44 1

21. jan25 (Posts: 470; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)

garbage Nexus? how deluded are you.

posted on 05 Oct 2012, 00:04 1

22. ilriz08 (Posts: 9; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)

dude the only reason the nexus is more powerful in performance than the SL is because it offers updates straight from google. but the nexus has only 1 Ghz single-core processor

posted on 05 Oct 2012, 00:06 1

23. ilriz08 (Posts: 9; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)

oops sorry wrong info it's dual 1.2 ghz as for sl's dual 1.7

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 07:46 15

3. brock8687 (Posts: 10; Member since: 03 Oct 2012)

deserves a better rating thats for sure.... for what I have experienced, Sony phones are one of the most stable androids out there...... pity their marketing division sucks....

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 13:25 1

19. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)

7.5 - 8 at the most i can understand this coming from PA....... i guess knowing that they are usually wayy off its "ok"...............long as they dont try and give the TX and V something like this im good

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 07:50 9

4. GUNDAM (Posts: 63; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)

is it me or is PA kinda anti-sony??? :(

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 07:55 1

5. ryq24 (Posts: 771; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

another sony phone failing to pass the 4 stars mark.

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:09 6

7. camohan (Posts: 13; Member since: 03 Oct 2012)

"In that sub-$450 price range you can't find many phones with the Xperia SL specs, so Sony is doing the right thing to attract customer attention towards what would otherwise be considered a lame upgrade." Than too just 7....not done!!!

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 13:28 2

20. XPERIA-KNIGHT (unregistered)

dude i love sony but with 450 dollars you can get a One X, One S, an Evo 4g lte or if you're a tablet guy then you can get two nexuses with that kind of money............on ebay

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:16 2

8. kanagadeepan (Posts: 979; Member since: 24 Jan 2012)

Let us hope the upcoming Nexus from SONY will get more than four stars (out of five)... SONY please bring an android phone with Xenon flash... There is very less competition for great camera phones in whole of the Android world...

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:24 2

9. oktopod3 (Posts: 4; Member since: 05 Sep 2012)

i like the XS very much, but this pink one makes me wanna puke.

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 08:54 2

12. ruchi (Posts: 8; Member since: 17 Apr 2012)

It is so much better than even galaxy s2. The display quality is amazing. It has 720p screen resolution. It's CPU is also faster than samsung galaxy s2. See the main three points here:

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 09:14 5

13. joaolx (Posts: 364; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)

Those negatives points make this phone a 7? What the hell?

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 09:36 7

14. javorr (Posts: 14; Member since: 28 Feb 2012)

Daniel hates sony , now I know it .

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 10:17 3

17. Zenith_95 (Posts: 2; Member since: 03 Oct 2012)

Absolutely Agreed, and his Accent seriously P*ssed me off, seriously please, Change a reviewer like John V or someone else

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 09:38

15. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4293; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)

Why is Sony making all it's Xperia phones look so much alike?
People are going to have a hard time figuring out which is which! Agree that it's a beautiful line, but still it don't feel so right.

posted on 03 Oct 2012, 09:59 7

16. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)

Do these "star" ratings really matter when the "bias" is so evident ?

posted on 08 Oct 2012, 09:53

24. SonyXperiaNexus (Posts: 374; Member since: 01 Oct 2012)

that thing looks horrible in pink.

posted on 11 Oct 2012, 18:06

25. jenna_23 (Posts: 145; Member since: 02 Apr 2010)

I just ordered mine black of course no pink for this girl lol ;)

posted on 01 Jan 2013, 07:06

27. X-Box (Posts: 1; Member since: 01 Jan 2013)

Xperia SL, ION, or acro S ??

posted on 16 Feb 2013, 16:55

28. umarfarooqkhan (Posts: 2; Member since: 16 Feb 2013)

Just bought SL and I MUST SAY .... AWESOME CELL PHONE.

1. Outstandingly attractive , I hear ppl saying check out the cell it so expensive you know
2. Super camera , but you need to know how to use the features apart from selecting the AUTO scene , if you can set your own req by changing the snap feature it can give you more then excellent results.
3. SOLID body
4. 32 GB is more then ENOUGH , so stop winning if it does not have an external SD card, i mean who needs more then THAT..lol
5. Great hands free which lots of Manufacturers like SAMSUNG Iphone SUCK at , come one you buy a 4-5 grand cell phone and you get those lame ass hands free ??
6. HD dsiplay
7. Perfect Video recording
8. Super Fast

1. Viewing angle is not that great
2. Battery not that good

One thing I love after buying a Sony is not everyone has it so you stand out in the crowd with your device and make other jealous, I dont know why ppl dont like the invisible strip, to me that was the main reason for buying SL, it makes it very Unique.

posted on 22 Feb 2013, 10:45

30. Blacklisted (unregistered)

hey :) can you answer my question ....can we change the color of the led lights in the transparent bars like the other xperia S , U

posted on 28 Feb 2013, 18:48

32. umarfarooqkhan (Posts: 2; Member since: 16 Feb 2013)

Nopes I dont believe it can, Maybe if you install a custom ROM then it would be possible

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Sony Xperia SL

Sony Xperia SL

OS: Android 4.0.4
view full specs
Display4.3 inches, 720 x 1280 pixels (342 ppi) TFT
Camera12.1 megapixels
Qualcomm Snapdragon S3, Dual-core, 1700 MHz, Scorpion processor
Size5.04 x 2.52 x 0.42 inches
(128 x 64 x 10.6 mm)
5.08 oz  (144 g)

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