Xperia Z Tablet Review – Beach Companion

Being the owner of an Xperia Z smartphone it seemed fitting that I gave it’s bigger brother the once over. With a day away from Clove HQ and the English summertime belatedly arriving I thought it would be good to review the tablet by incorporating it into my day at the beach. The IP57 rating (water and dust proofing) of the tablet lends itself to the perfect beach companion. Therefore, I sought to investigate just how good the 10.1” tablet really is and if its features make for the ideal beachside device. This is not your traditional review, it’s a true user review that will comment on some of the standout features  (in my opinion) and the ‘usability’ of the device in a ‘day-to-day’ scenario.

Looks

The Xperia Z tablet follows the same design as the Xperia Z smartphone, harsh edges and minimalistic looks result in a truly stunning looking device. Similar to the smartphone, the Xperia Z tablet has flaps to cover the ports, allowing for water and dust proofing of the device. These flaps also help generate the minimalistic look of the tablet. A company who always produces attractive devices, Sony has excelled in producing a fantastic looking tablet with all the features to go with it. At just 7.2mm thick it’s a wonder how they managed to cram such a wealth of top quality components inside the 10.1” tablet’s slender body. The tablet has a thicker bezel around the display on the shorter sides of the device, allowing the user to hold it and not impede their vision of the screen. Unlike the smartphone, the tablet has a matte black finish on the back of the device as opposed to the glass finish on the phone (see pic below).

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It’s rather hard to describe the looks of anything without providing you with some pictures, so here’s some I took whilst at the beach:

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Sony Xperia comparison table

With manufacturers producing many devices in a generation, it can be difficult to decide which one suits your needs best. With Sony’s recent announcement of the Xperia M, sitting towards the low end of their device portfolio, we decided it would be a good idea to provide a quick comparison chart of the current range, including the Xperia Z, Xperia SP and Xperia L We have also included the low end Xperia E device; whether the M will replace this as the de-facto low end model for the future remains to be seen.

xperia comparison table

All the above devices are running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and can officially accept microSDHC memory cards up to 32 GB. The last major difference is that the Xperia E has Bluetooth support up to 2.1 only; the newer devices all support Bluetooth 4.0.

Our Top 10 Smartphones

The world of smartphones is constantly changing and there are lots of top 10 lists out there, so here we have our current top 10 smartphones of the moment. Check back because we will keep this post updated as new devices are released

So without further or do our top 10 smartphones are:

1. HTC One

The HTC One brings a new experience to Android users with a dramatically improved HTC Sense user interface, great design and cutting edge hardware, with a 1.7GHz quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM the HTC One will handle most things that you can ask of it, and with a 2300mAh battery you should too get a full day’s usage.

Interact with all this great content through a stunning 4.7 inch HD capacitive display, which has a 1920 x 1080 resolution for an incredible 468 PPI (points per inch). It has various new features such as ‘Blinkfeed’ which streams live updates from a variety of feeds, be it social or news direct to your Home screen, ‘HTC Zoe’ Made up of 4 components, Zoe Photos, Highlights, Editor and Share.

More features including HTC Boom sound, Sense TV.

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Sony Xperia Z supplied with Sony MH-EX300AP Headphones

Sony_Xperia_Z_Front_AnglePreviously we have advised customers our stock of the Sony Xperia Z will be supplied with standard headphones. The great news is we have received confirmation from our suppliers that our stock of the Sony Xperia Z will in fact be supplied with the premium Sony MH-EX300AP headphones.  These headphones provide crystal clear sound with outstanding bass, so you will be able to fully enjoy your music and videos.

Additional specifications for the Sony MH-EX300AP headphones

Our first stock of the Sony Xperia Z is expected on the 28th February.  So if you were holding back now is a great time to place a pre-order.  Don’t forget you will receive a free Sony SRS-BTV5 wireless speaker with your pre-order.   

Pre-order Sony Xperia Z

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Sony Xperia Z

Enter the Sony Xperia Z, the best of Sony in a smartphone.

A 5” stunner, the Xperia Z is bigger than the popular Samsung Galaxy S III but smaller than the Note and Note 2.

A precision engineered IP55 & IP57 rated Android smartphone with an endless list of features that will keep you connected and productive.

ThSony_Xperia_Z_Front_Anglee Xperia Z  has a razor sharp 5″ full HD (1920 x 1080p) display with 443ppi. Built with advanced BRAVIA screen technology, the screen brings to life those images captured on the 13 megapixel camera. The screen itself is also scratch resistant.

A 13 megapixel fast capture camera on the Z is built using technology and expertise from leading cameras from Sony and as such the Xperia Z has the worlds first smartphone camera image sensor with HDR video that lets you capture sharp photos and full HD video, even in bright sunlight.

There is too a front facing 2.2 megapixel full HD camera and to ensure the best images are captured at all times, Sony have built in Superior Auto mode which is optimised for 36 different scenes, activating HDR and noise reduction when needed.

High end screen and camera, next is the high end processor. A quad-core processor no less, clocked at 1.5GHz with 2GB of RAM for super fact performance, especially when it comes to games! The intelligent processor makes use of the four cores as and when it needs them to give you best performance and maximum battery life.

Sony have added too, battery STAMINA mode, to assist in you getting four times longer standby times. When the screen is off, your phone automatically shuts down the battery-draining apps you don’t need, then starts them up again when the screen is back on.

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At 7.9mm in thickness the Xperia Z feels slim in hand but is also strong and sturdy and designed to resist daily use. Water and dust resistant adds to the Xperia Z’s durability. The front and back of the devices are made from durable tempered glass with anti-shatter films.

Sony_Xperia_BackOne-Touch mirroring gives you instant entertainment. Easily display the contents of your phone on the display of your NFC enabled BRAVIA TV for a wireless experience like no other. If you do not have the NFC enabled BRAVIA TV then you can use an MHL TV adapter (sold separately).

Google Android 4.1 is installed as standard but an update to 4.2 is already planned.

Sony Entertainment Network is available on this device for all the latest music, movies and more right in the palm of your hand (subscription required).

The Xperia Z is too PlayStation Certified, meaning PlayStation Store and PlayStation Mobile games on your device.

And finally, also available is PlayMemories Online. Upload pictures, automatically if you like from your phone and then view them from any internet connected device or BRAVIA TV.

So that is a few of the main features, but to recap:

  • 5” 1080 x 1920 full HD Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2
  • 13 MP fast capture camera with Exmor RS for mobile & HDR video
  • HD video recording
  • Front facing 2.2 megapixel camera
  • Dust and water resistant (IP55 & IP57) with a durable glass display
  • Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core 1.5GHz processor
  • 2GB RAM
  • Battery STAMINA mode for better battery life
  • PlayStation Certified
  • MHL
  • WiFi
  • 3G
  • MicroSD slot
  • Sony Entertainment Network

Of course you can find a more detailed specification on the Clove website HERE.

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You can also find out more by watching the following promotional video and viewing the images of the device below:

 

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Sony Xperia J Unboxing

Sony’s mid-range handset gets unboxed.

Free 60 day Music Unlimited trial for Xperia customers

Sony are now offering 60 days free access to the premium version of Music Unlimited for new Xperia customers

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Music Unlimited is Sony’s music streaming service, available at home and mobile on a range of devices including Android and iOS powered smartphones and tablets, PlayStation branded games consoles including PS3 and PS Vita or your desktop PC or Mac via the online web app available through your browser. For a limited time, Sony are offering 60 days free of the Premium plan to give access to Music Unlimited on any newly purchased Xperia smartphone.

New Xperia users will be able to download the Music Unlimited app from Google Play (some of the newest Xperia devices may have the app pre-installed), create a new account or sign in* and choose the 60 day trial offer to begin enjoying their music.

Music Unlimited offers over 15 million tracks from a massive range of artists including some unavailable on rival streaming services and thousands more added every week. The service features no adverts at any time, dozens of pre-set channels to suit any style, easy syncing from your personal collection to your new cloud library and an offline mode to listen to your playlists anywhere. Music Unlimited is also intelligent – tell it what you like and as you use the service listening to your favourite music it will learn your style to give you the best recommendations.

Music Unlimited is normally priced at £4.99 p/m for the home Access plan (PS3 / PC / Mac) or £9.99 p/m for the Premium plan (for mobile devices and handheld consoles).

*Existing PlayStation Network (PSN) account holders may use their account details to log in to Music Unlimited and take advantage of this offer provided they have not already used these details to activate a Music Unlimited Premium subscription from any device connected to the PSN

Sony Xperia T Unboxing

Hands on with a retail boxed Sony Xperia T

Check out our unboxing of the Sony Xperia T.  See what you get in the box and how it performs.

Sony Xperia U Video Review

A video review of the Sony Xperia U Android smartphone.

LG Optimus 4X HD–NFC Demo

A demonstration of the LG Optimus 4X using a Sony Xperia SmartTag.

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