Sony Xperia XZ Premium Review
Sony has been among the more prolific smartphone manufacturers over the past few years. Throughout 2016, the Japanese manufacturer unveiled seven new smartphones, and at MWC this year, it introduced four more handsets. The top device in the latter bunch was the Xperia XZ Premium.
With the XZ Premium, Sony promises unparalleled experience thanks to its revolutionary camera tech, excellent 5.5-inch 4K display and Qualcomm's latest silicon – the Snapdragon 835. Let's see if it delivers.
That's one big and gorgeous fingerprint magnet.
The XZ Premium is a beautiful phone. It comes with a 5.5” display in a rather bulky chassis, but still feels quite comfortable to hold. The body is mostly glass and metal, and it feels satisfyingly solid thanks to its size and weight. There's just one aspect to the Xperia XZ Premium's design that we're not too keen on, and that's its susceptibility to fingerprints, courtesy of its otherwise stunning mirror-like finish.
When it comes to the fingerprint scanner, it will be available outside the US only, as expected, and it's embedded in the power button on the right side. The same side of the phone also holds the volume rocker which is placed above the power button and is far more comfortable to use than those of the Xperia XZ and Xperia XZs.
The left side of the phone holds only the combined SIM and microSD tray. The bottom houses the USB Type-C port, and the top – the 3.5 mm jack.
When you look at the Xperia XZ Premium's front, you see a classic Sony design – bezels that are slightly on the big side, but also give the device a rather stylish formal look. Pair this with the impressive display and the dual front-firing speakers, and you have a truly great-looking handset that certainly catches the eye.
Overall, Sony did a great job with the phone's looks.
A very solid screen, despite being a bit blueish.
When it comes to the Sony Xperia XZ Premium's display, it's hard to find something not to like about it. It's a 5.5-inch 4K LCD panel, which makes it plenty crisp in all possible use cases. This includes games, video content, web browsing and what not. That being said, for videos and movies, the difference between a 4K display and a 1080p one would be barely noticeable, unless you really look for it. So, in case you're wondering what the benefits of the 4K panel are, they're most noticeable with VR content, where you will suffer far less quality loss. Bear in mind that Sony doesn't have its own VR platform for smartphones, but you may use the XZ with Google's Cardboard.
We have only one complaint about the panel – its colors are somewhat unrealistic. However, it does feature three display presets that you can choose from to change the way colors are shown – Standard, Super-vivid, and Professional Mode. The first is the default profile the phone comes with, the second obviously over-saturates all colors, and the third is meant to present you with the most realistic colors. That effect, however, is somewhat spoiled by the slight blueish hue of the screen. Thankfully, you can adjust the white balance as well, using the provided sliders under the Display option in the phone's settings, and completely get rid of any unwanted tints.