Sony Xperia sola Review

Introduction and Design

Last year we were introduced to a whole bunch of well-executed Android mid-rangers made by Sony Ericsson: the Xperia ray, Xperia neo, and Xperia mini, to name a few. Fast forward to 2012 and Sony is on its own, but will it manage to keep on delivering decent hardware at a reasonable price? Well, let's find out!

What we are reviewing today is the Sony Xperia sola, which comes with a 3.7-inch LCD display, 5-megapixel camera, NFC, “floating touch” technology (more on that later), and most importantly, a dual-core processor clocked at 1GHz: a specs sheet that has “mid-range” written all over it. Care to know how it performs in real life? Then read along...

The box contains:

  • Wall charger
  • Data cable
  • Wired stereo headset
  • 2 SmartTags
  • microSIM adapter
  • Quick start guide and other papers


The Sony Xperia sola is clearly not meant to be used as a fashion accessory. Instead of curved, shiny elements we have a plastic candy-bar body with a soft touch finish applied to its back. And in all honesty, we like it! That is because the smartphone feels nice to the touch and gives us the impression of a well-built versatile tool – a tool that you will mostly use to do stuff, not just pose around with. Perhaps the thicker than usual display bezel is the only thing that we are not too crazy about, but we don't consider that a deal breaker by any means.

If jumbo-sized smartphones are not your cup of tea, the Xperia sola will most likely suit your preferences for its size is ideal for single-handed operation. It will fit inside pretty much any pocket or purse as well: the unit has a thickness of 9.9 millimeters and weighs 107 grams.

You can compare the Sony Xperia sola with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

We have no complaints about the trio of capacitive Android buttons, located underneath the smartphone's display. Same can be said about the lock key and 2-button volume rocker, which reside on the device's right side. The 2-stage camera button, however, leaves room for improvement. Pressing it half-way is not much of a problem, but then pushing it all the way down requires excessive force to be exerted.


The LCD display on the Xperia sola measures 3.7 inches in diagonal and has a resolution of 480 by 854 pixels, which translates into a relatively high pixel density (265ppi). As a result, graphics look detailed and fine text does not require much effort to be read. On top of that, we are pretty satisfied with the display's accurate color reproduction. Blacks, however, do not look as deep as they do on some other display types, such as AMOLED and S-LCD panels. In addition, there is a barely noticeable motion blur, which might be annoying in some rare cases. Fortunately, the display is bright enough to ensure relatively comfortable operation in broad daylight.

Sony Xperia sola 360-degrees View:

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