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HANDS ON PREVIEW: Sony announces the new Sony Xperia XZ3

John Reilly
  • On August 31, 2018

Sony has just taking the wraps of their latest flagship device here at IFA 2018. The new Xperia XZ3 packs Sony’s first ever OLED display in a smartphone. It also packs a 19MP ‘Motion Eye’ sensor, the same as the one found in the XZ2, that’s capable of recording in 4K HDR. Are these along with its other specs below enough to make it stand out from the likes of what Samsung and Huawei have to offer? Only time will tell.



Below is a breakdown of the other key specs of the device:

  • 158 x 73 x 9.9mm, 193g
  • IP68
  • 18:9 aspect, 6-inch OLED curved display
  • 2960 x 1440 pixels, 568ppi
  • X-Reality and HDR
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
  • 4GB RAM, 64GB + microSD
  • 3330mAh battery, USB C with Quick Charge 3.0
  • No 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Rear 19MP f/2.0 Motion Eye
  • Single lens
  • 13MP front camera
  • Android Pie
  • Side Sense

The Sony Xperia XZ2 introduced something called ‘Loop Design’, which had a curved glass back and acted as an evolution from the OmniBalance design of previous Xperia devices.

The overall size and shape of the XZ3 has changed slightly compared to the XZ2, with the new device a little taller, slimmer and heavier but the new OLED borderless display looks fantastic.



The fingerprint sensor and a singular camera are positioned in a central line on the back, as they were on the Xperia XZ2 (and we still think the fingerprint sensor is too low on the device) and the new device is IP65/68 water and dust resistant as flagship Sony devices have been for several years.



As we mentioned at the startSony has decided to use an OLED display for the first time ever in an Xperia phone. The Xperia XZ3 comes with a 6-inch OLED screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio. The screen is also curved at the edges, allowing for a new feature called Side Sense – more on that a little further down – and Sony also finally jumped on board the Quad HD+ train. The Xperia XZ3 has a resolution of 2960 x 1440 pixels, resulting in a pixel density of 568ppi.

You’ll also find support for mobile HDR on the XZ3, as there was on the Xperia XZ2. Sony doesn’t just support HDR-compatible content though, it also upscales content to near HDR thanks to the X-Reality technology.

Despite rumours suggesting there would be an increase to 6GB in RAM, the Xperia XZ3 sticks with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage with microSD support for cards up to 512GB.

There is an increase in battery capacity though, with the Xperia XZ3 offering a 3330mAh cell inside. Quick Charging 3.0 is supported, along with Qi wireless charging and of course, USB Type-C.

There is no headphone jack on the XZ3, with Sony ditching the 3.5mm port for the XZ2. You will find support for hi-res audio, as has been the case in Sony flagship phones for a while now and you’ll also find the Dynamic Vibration System and stereo speakers with S-Force Surround.

The Xperia XZ3 has a single rear Motion Eye camera, which is the same as what you’ll find in the Xperia XZ2. That’s Sony’s 19-megapixel sensor, offering an f/2.0 aperture lens.

Like the XZ2, the XZ3’s rear camera is capable of 960fps slow-motion at 1080p and HDR video capture.

The front camera has been upgraded on the Xperia XZ3 to a 13-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/1.9 aperture. It has Sony’s 3D creator on board but there is no iris scanning or facial recognition.

The Sony Xperia XZ3 will launch on Android Pie with Sony’s software skin over the top.

There are a couple of extra features on the XZ3 including Side Sense, which we briefly mentioned previously. Double tapping the side of the curved display will pull up the user’s most used apps and the device will learn what apps are important to the user at what time. For example, YouTube on the morning commute or WhatsApp at lunch time.

User’s will also be able to double tap the side of the display when they are in the camera app to take a picture.

The device will go on sale on 5 October and it will have an RRP of €850 and we’ll be sure to have our review of the new Sony Xperia XZ3 live as soon as we get one of the handsets into the office!


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