The Sony Xperia Z2 is the latest flagship super-phone from Sony, replacing the Xperia Z1 released last year. The new phone keeps the same aluminium-edged design, sexy glass front and back, Full HD display, quad-core processor and impressive 20.7-megapixel camera. Like its predecessor, it’s completely waterproof.
So what’s new you may ask.
Not a lot, the Z2 is an incremental upgrade from its predecessor. It has a slightly larger 5.2-inch display, a slimmer bezel around the edge, a slightly faster 2.3GHz Qualcomm processor, the latest Android 4.4.2 KitKat software and a camera capable of capturing 4K video.
Sony has improved on the Z1’s screen which was terrible viewed off axis. Viewing angles on the new 5.2in IPS display are up to standard now. Colours are even more vivid due to Sony’s Live Colour LED tech. Bring up a full HD video and you’ll also notice that contrast is outstanding with great detail. Apps, emails and webpages look crisp and clean. The video viewing experience is further enhanced by the clear and loud stereo speakers, which Sony has moved to the front of phone.
Sony hasn’t compromised on the design of this big slab of a phone with glass on both sides even when it means compromising the ability to hold the phone. It doesn’t feel well balanced and is uncomfortable to hold the edges look great but feel sharp the the flat back adds to the uncomfortable feel in the hand …I haven’t dropped it yet but I have come really close.
When you first boot up the phone, you’ll be confronted by Sony’s usual collection of media and social feed widgets, which I suspect most of you will remove as you personalize the phone. You will be impressed by the quality of the screen and you will quickly find out that this is one powerful device. Apps open quickly, everything scrolls smoothly and even gaming is a pleasant experience.
The Xperia Z2’s 20-megapixel camera is carried over from the Z1, and that’s a good thing. Pictures are spectacular under all lighting conditions..you can definitely leave your point and shoot at home. The Z2’s great pictures aren’t only a function of the 20MP sensor, but also from the size of the sensor: at 1/2.3 inches, the chip can suck in significantly more light than any of its rivals. Coupled with large JPEG sizes of up to 9MB this phone produces photographs with less noise and less of the flat “digital” feel that you’d normally expect from a phone camera. Given such high image quality, photo junkies would have liked a RAW function which is sadly absent.
The Xperia Z2 camera app is loaded with features with a simple to understand interface.
Background defocus or Bokeh is tough to do with just software but I was impressed with the result…not perfect, but pretty good.
The video camera is just as good…I don’t have a 4K monitor so I can’t tell you what that would look like..but it is pretty impressive at 1080P
The Xperia Z2 also offers true water resistance. A coated headphone jack and the two rubber-sealed ports help the phone earn its IP55 and IP58 certification. This means you can submerge the phone in water without worries. I’m not sure of the value of this feature; I have never had a phone damaged by water but it is a cool feature to show your friends and if the phone gets gunked up you can put it under the tap.
Now you would expect a phone with such a big screen and powerful processor would be a battery hog. It is, but Sony has managed to cram a 3,200mAh battery into this thin case so battery life is spectacular. Most people can expect two days on a charge.
The Sony Xperia Z2 has a glorious screen, loads of power, terrific battery, a great camera and a beautiful design. Sure, it’s expensive, but the Sony Xperia Z2 is everything you should expect from a top-end phone. Its impressive performance matches the Samsung Galaxy S5 for top smartphone but the Z2’s slick glass and metal design puts the S5’s plastic body to shame. Before you buy however, make sure you can live with the unsettling balance and feel of this otherwise great phone.
The Sony Xperia Z2 is available unlocked direct from Sony for $700 or specially priced until June 5, 2014 for $150 with a Bell 2 year plan.