Sony Xperia Z Ultra vs Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

Introduction


Battle of the titans gets an entirely new meaning when you pit the Sony Xperia Z Ultra against the Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3. There have never been phones before with screens that large, so we had to stake a cage match.

In one corner is Sony's latest and greatest 6.4 inch phone, stuffed to the gills with a high-res display, watertight chassis, and record fast processor. In the other is the Mega 6.3, which should be a more “budget” version of a big-screen phone, if we look at the midrange specs, yet its price doesn't really convey that. Which one will prevail? Read on to find out...

Design


Believe it or not, the 6.4-inch Z Ultra is much larger than the 6.3-inch Galaxy phone. It is way taller and a tad wider than the Samsung handset, which makes it even more unwieldy to talk on or carry around. Not that with 8mm of the Mega 6.3 isn't slim, but at just 6.5mm, Sony's handset is record thin, which eases handling somewhat.

Still, you can forget about comfortable one-handed operation with both handsets, and sitting with them in your pocket is a chore, unless you carry combat pants with side pockets all the time. These sizes are actually only suited for purses, and talking through a Bluetooth headset, rather than, say, folks with skinny jeans, or any jeans, for that matter.


The Z Ultra is undoubtedly the more premium phone to hold and look at, with its glass back and metal side frames, whereas the Galaxy Mega 6.3 leaves that typical plasticky Samsung feeling, and it is not even much lighter than the Z Ultra to boot.

The buttons around the sides on both handsets are comfortable to feel and press, with good tactile feedback. Sony's round OmniBalance power/lock key is very well placed exactly where you thumb would be while holding the large handset, while the one on the Mega 6.3 is a bit off-kilter in comparison.


The Galaxy phone has the advantage of a user-replaceable battery, unlike what we get with the unibody design of the Xperia Z Ultra, which still grants you a microSD slot for storage expansion, though. Sony's sealed chassis has a major purpose, however, and it is to give the phone its IP58 certification, which means it can stay in up to 5 feet (1.5m) of water for about an hour, which is a huge plus for the Z Ultra when pitted against the Mega 6.3 – just try to watch the final season of “Breaking Bad” in the bathtub and you'll see what we mean.




Display


The Galaxy Mega 6.3 features a HD LCD display, which is the norm for upper midrangers these days. It spreads the 720x1280 resolution over the giant 6.3” screen, ringing in 233ppi pixel density- nothing to write home about, so some text and icon corners will appear jagged if you look closer. Sony Xperia Z Ultra features a 1080x1920 pixels Full HD display with 342ppi pixel density, so even at that screen size you'd be hard-pressed to tell the individual pixels from a normal viewing distance.

Sony uses its new Triluminous technology for the panel, which provides more vibrant colors with a richer number of hues on paper, and in reality the whole image indeed looks very appealing, without being oversaturated. The colors on the Mega 6.3 look duller in comparison, and more washed-out.

As for the outdoorsy performance, both displays exhibit similar peak brightness levels, but the Galaxy Mega 6.3 sports worse reflectance than the Xperia Z Ultra, so it's harder to tell the image in sunlight, for example. Both displays sport very good viewing angles, which in the case of Sony's phablet is a relief when we remember the narrow angles of the display on the flagship Xperia Z.

Sony one-ups the Mega 6.3's display in another aspect as well, since you can write or doodle on the display of the Z Ultra with pens or even pencils lying around, instead of a dedicated stylus, with superior handwriting recognition.

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40 Comments

1. PhoneArenaUser

Posts: 5498; Member since: Aug 05, 2011

I would choose Sony Xperia Z Ultra.

3. MCrapp

Posts: 318; Member since: Apr 07, 2013

I would choose Nexus7 (2)

10. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

...+1

13. yudi.nemesis unregistered

For productivity and multimedia entertainment i would chose N72 over ZU, 6.3, G Pro, Note 2/3 or even HTC MAX.

22. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Comment of the day. +1

29. Kevinphantom

Posts: 82; Member since: Jun 17, 2013

I have Battery life issue in my xperia z ultra it goes from % 100 to 0 by 1 hour of using

34. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

We have here what we call warranty And we also have what we call personal care!!

2. xperiaDROID

Posts: 5629; Member since: Mar 08, 2013

Sony Xperia Z Ultra all the way!

4. Finest

Posts: 90; Member since: Aug 16, 2013

lol this is a mismatch, mega shall never be compared to the z ultra ZU is too good for the mega

5. dipereira0123

Posts: 17; Member since: Jul 26, 2011

honestly, sony Xperia UI sucks =/ Sony Xperia tablet Z is the best tablet, indeed, about phablets galaxy note is the king, i have the note 10.1(tablet and xperia ZQ too), the pen makes diference im many situations like wearing gloves in a cold winter, more precision for old people like my mon/dad, and so on...

6. Finest

Posts: 90; Member since: Aug 16, 2013

apparently you can use any kinds of pen on ZU unlike note you need the S pen

23. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

You kind of missed the point of his comment. Sony's UI sucks.

30. GTR722

Posts: 270; Member since: Oct 20, 2012

So you love the child made UI of samsung ??

16. Jason2k13

Posts: 1469; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

the loud speaker on Z tablet was awful, one reason i did not buy it.

7. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2279; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

They're both incomparable, the Z Ultra embarrasses the Mega 6.3 on every level!

8. Shatter

Posts: 2036; Member since: May 29, 2013

Mega will have better battery life, get updates faster and is a lot cheaper, thats it. The only things comparable on these 2 phones is the size, the Xperia destroys it in almost everything.

12. yudi.nemesis unregistered

Faster updates??? open your eyes its not SE anymore, and for battery life lets wait GSMARENA battery test

14. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

being 30% cheaper is not a lot cheaper considering the specs. the mega does not even come close to being half the device that the xz ultra is. this is clearly a mismatch. the comparison stops in the display size.

17. skyline88

Posts: 698; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

galaxy mega 6.3 16gb LTE can be had for 400 USD in my region, and ZU (without LTE) is selling at 640 USD here. mega is having a much better battery life, much slimmer bezel and better camera with LED flash. "does not even come close to being half?" LOL

24. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

smaller bezels? smaller overall size? AFAIK, phablets bigger than the size of mega can't be used one-handed so from that size up to the 7-incher phablet, it really does not matter. they're all not pocketable and cannot be comfortably used one-handed. forgive my inaccuracy in estimating things but just consider this: i'd say xperia z is not half the smartphone that galaxy s4 is. i'm just completely disappointed with xz. similarly, i'd say that galaxy mega is still not half the device that xz ultra is.

28. gx3kgx3k

Posts: 10; Member since: Aug 19, 2013

Here in the UK you can get the Mega 6.3 for £330 and the Xperia ZU for £640. I don't think the Xperia ZU is worth the extra £310 without the LTE, flash, and huge bezels.

9. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

If you want something cheaper go for the galaxy mega 6.3. But if you don't mind the price, it's the z ultra all the way

11. SonyPS4

Posts: 347; Member since: May 21, 2013

Why Z Ultra more music playback than Galaxy Megadespite smaller battery ? Did Sony use more power efficient music apps than Samsung ?

15. GTR722

Posts: 270; Member since: Oct 20, 2012

Dams that Mega looks so cheap next to the ZU...like a toy phone or something.

18. skyline88

Posts: 698; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

the ZU looks like designer forgotten to get rid of bezel during design process, almost like an iJunk

26. pwnarena

Posts: 1129; Member since: Feb 15, 2013

but did you consider that even with the smallest of bezels, a display that size ends up not being pocketable and comfortable to use one-handed? doesn't really make any difference as far as i'm concerned. they're just small tablets with phone capabilities. dimensions no longer matter after having a 6" display. even without any bezel, a 6-inch display is already too big to be called a phone.

31. pyradark

Posts: 895; Member since: Jun 10, 2012

Plus small bezel could end up 9mm thick same as ZL, so im GO with huge bezel for the slimmest phablet of all

19. jaisix

Posts: 13; Member since: Aug 18, 2013

Lol you are comparing Lamborghini with a honda city

20. jaisix

Posts: 13; Member since: Aug 18, 2013

You cant show that plastic s**t in front of gorgeous zu

21. isprobi

Posts: 797; Member since: May 30, 2011

Specs wise there is no doubt that Xperia ZU wins. But a big problem for me is the higher resolution of the ZU. It makes text and icons small. Which is a big problem for people like me that do not have perfect vision. And the accessibility options of Android do not seem to help much. So far the best platform for peoplelike me is BB10. When you turn on accessibility mode you can pinch and zoom everywhere in the OS and all applications. Plus BB10 lets you choose a font size that applies to most OS menues and built in apps.

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