Interface


Sony is known for its light touch when it comes to skinning Android, and the Marshmallow build running on the Xperia X changes none of that. It's still a friendly and ultimately understated execution, though we'd argue that Sony can learn a thing or two from HTC, whose UI is similarly minimalist, but also decidedly more visually attractive.

In any case, a few standout features have been made available with the X, including the ability to double tap the screen to wake it or put it to sleep. For whatever reason, however, these two options are not on by default, and are located in two different menus. Odd. 

The iconography in the Settings menu is also different from that on the Xperia Z5, though we've got to say that the new style is neither an improvement nor a step back.

Taking cue from Apple's iOS, Sony is also letting you quickly search for apps by swiping down anywhere on the homescreen.

Finally, it's also worth noting that while our unit (meant for the US market) offers no fingerprint scanner integrated into the power button on the right side, other regions are expected to get the security feature.

Phone

Adopting a familiar Material Design style, the Phone app on the Xperia X is actually pretty powerful, at least in relative terms.

T9-keypad support is available if you're used to it, and so are essentials such as call forwarding and call barring. The Smart call handling features also allows you to pick up calls by simply putting the Xperia X to your ear or reject them by shaking the phone.

Perhaps most unique, however, is the Xperia Answering Machine, which is obviously different from your carrier's voicemail feature. As with the answering machines of old, you record a personal greeting and set how long after a caller connects before said message is played. Whatever the other side has to say, the Xperia X will record for later hearing.

Messenger


The Messenger app, also styled with Material Design guidelines in mind, is pretty minimalist. Apart from the most basic features, there's really nothing that stands out.

When composing a message, however, the X does give you plenty of creative options. You can send stickers (as an MMS, obviously), location, contacts, sketches, videos, and even voice recordings. In a way, Sony has pretty much gone for a messenger app-style functionality, but within the context of old-school texting.

Organizer


To keep organized, the Xperia X relies heavily on Google solutions. Starting with the Calendar, through Drive and the Docs/Sheets/Slides productivity family, right down to Gmail. A separate, Sony email client is also available, along with dedicated Weather, News, and Calculator apps.

Processor and memory



Known for their decent, but not at all inspiring performance, Qualcomm's Snapdragon 600-series chips of old used to be a concern from our point of view. Sure, they were the obvious choice in the mid-range, but we often felt they delivered inconsistent speed, especially in terms of navigational fluidity. Real heavy games, unless well-optimized, were also a burden on the chips.

Thankfully, that's the past. Making use of the hexa-core Snapdragon 650, the Xperia X runs great on the latest Android Marshmallow build of Sony's custom UI. Navigation is buttery, load times are satisfactory, and you can actually do some more serious gaming thanks to the Adreno 510 GPU.

On the memory front, the X brings it with generous 3 gigs of LPDDR3 RAM and a choice of 32GB or 64GB of built-in storage. If either of these options sounds insufficient, rest assured that you can expand through a microSD card for many times that.

AnTuTu Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 73681.5
Google Nexus 5X 53178
Huawei P9 96185
LG G5 134074
Vellamo Metal Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 2380.66
Google Nexus 5X 2161
Huawei P9 2940.33
LG G5 3515
Vellamo Browser Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 4772.66
Google Nexus 5X 4220
Huawei P9 6679.66
LG G5 4498
JetStream Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 42.92
Huawei P9 67.93
LG G5 52.218
GFXBench T-Rex HD on-screen Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 33
Google Nexus 5X 38
Huawei P9 42.66
LG G5 54.33
GFXBench Manhattan 3.1 on-screen Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 9.9
Google Nexus 5X 16
Huawei P9 11
LG G5 17
Basemark OS II Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 1337.66
Google Nexus 5X 1537
Huawei P9 1946
LG G5 1913
Geekbench 3 single-core Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 1323
Google Nexus 5X 1179
Huawei P9 1756
LG G5 2344
Geekbench 3 multi-core Higher is better
Sony Xperia X 3694.33
Google Nexus 5X 3379
Huawei P9 6475
LG G5 5442


Internet and connectivity


For all your browsing needs, the Xperia X will be directing you to Google's Chrome, as has been the case for several generations now. As can be expected, surfing through Chrome is pleasant and the experience is very consistent. Navigational operations, such as zooming in and out and panning larger pages is executed well, without annoying amounts of delays or random stutters.

Onto the connectivity front, we've got a full stack. The Wi-Fi module on board, for example, can connect to both legacy 2.4Ghz bands and 5GHz ones. Bluetooth is at the latest, 4.2 version, and there's also support for NFC, DLNA, Miracast technologies. Over 12 LTE bands are supported. The SIM slot is of the Nano size.

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