Sony Xperia T2 Ultra Review
We are glad to report that the T2 Ultra doesn't disappoint in terms of call quality. Its earpiece is very strong and sounds rather clean, with no audible distortions, even at the highest volume. We were notified from the other end of the line that they could hear us loud and clear, too, while the two noise-cancellation mics removed the surrounding fluff, and relayed only our voice to the other side.
The T2 Ultra is the longest-lasting mobile device we've ever tested, with the record 10+ hours of screen-on time – need we say more?
So far so good, but the best thing about the Xperia T2 Ultra is the battery life it scores from the 3000 mAh juicer. Sony is renowned for the well-balanced battery consumption of its midrangers, which consistently score towards the top percentile in our battery test, but it outdid itseld with the phablet. The company promises the whopping 24 hours of talk time in 3G mode for the T2 Ultra, and almost a month and a half on standby, as well as 10 hours of HD video playback on a charge. Those numbers are way above the average, and should come as a hint that the T2 Ultra phablet performed very well on our own grueling battery test, too. In fact, we logged even more screen-on time than Sony cites, at 10 hours and 16 minutes, making the T2 Ultra the device with the longest battery life we've ever tested, tablets included. That's a great feature to have on a dual SIM Active handset, which sucks more juice out of the battery to maintain two networks at once, so if you are looking for a phablet that will last you two or three days with average usage, the T2 Ultra it is.
On the minus side, it takes more than four hours to fully charge the battery from zero to hero, as the supplied stock charger provides just 0.85A of output, while most phones come with 1A+ units, while the Galaxy S5 has 2A one, and the Oppo Find 7a the whopping 4.5A. You can get Sony's 1.5A Quick Charger as a $30 accessory to speed up the juicing, or just a more powerful 3rd party 1-1.5A charger you have lying around.
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.
In the end, we have to say that Sony did an excellent job with the Xperia T2 Ultra. Granted, it is a big handset, but you can't expect anything less from a 6” phablet, plus it's very thin and light for the screen size. We could also expect a bit more from the display's pixel density, but it's a worthy tradeoff for the phone's price and performance. When we stack the longest battery life we've ever measured, with the very good pictures and videos produced by the phablet's 13 MP camera, and the dual SIM Active functionality, we can pronounce the T2 Ultra as one of the best phablets in the midrange category.
You can't get much more for about $430 without subsidies, yet there are some pretty decent alternatives out there. The Xperia Z Ultra comes to mind first, which now costs just a tad more, but offers a larger 1080p display, faster processor, and a very slim waterproof chassis. Its battery life is much less, though, and it only has an 8 MP camera without flash. Samsung's Galaxy Mega 6.3 is about the same price as the T2 Ultra, but again with shorter battery life, thicker design, and an 8 MP camera. Going a Benjamin higher in price, you face the real 6” 1080p competition, such as the HTC One max with its Boomsound stereo speakers, the LG G Pro 2 with an optically stabilized 13 MP camera, or the Alcatel OneTouch Hero, which has excellent battery life, too. If you are looking for a still-large screen, but smaller dimensions, Samsung's 5.7” Note 3 is always a great choice, with its S Pen stylus functionality, or the 5.5” Oppo Find 7a. These cost more, though, and don't have the stellar battery life of the T2 Ultra.
All in all, Sony has managed to create a very appealing midrange phablet with the T2 Ultra. That's a much less explored market niche, plus it spiced the offer up with the longest battery life we've ever measured on a mobile device, and a good 13 MP camera. Thus, we can wholeheartedly recommend the Xperia T2 Ultra, if you are into them 6-inchers, but looking to score on a tighter budget.
Software version: 19.0.D.0.253
- The longest battery life we've tested on a mobile, with record 10+ hours of screen-on time
- Slim and light for a 6-incher
- Dual SIM Active device with fine call quality
- Good pictures and video in all situations
- Interface options that aide one-handed operation
- Strong loudspeaker
- Uncomfortable to use with one hand and carry around
- Ships with one bit older, Android 4.3 version
- The stock charger is just 0.85A, so it takes 4+ hours to fully charge the phablet
- Rear cover is a fingerprint and pocket lint magnet
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1280 x 720 pixels
13 MP (Single camera)
1.1 MP front
- Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 400, 1GB RAM
- Storage 8GB, microSDXC
- Battery 3000 mAh
Android 5.0 Lollipop