Print 33 comment(s) - last by MZperX.. on Mar 29 at 11:37 AM

New phone is low end of the 1080p pack, but still offers some nice features

Sony Corp. (TYO:6758) is finally offering the Xperia ZL for pre-order in the U.S. market.  The bulkier clone of the sleeker Xperia Z, the Sony handset still offers most of the 1080p-related goodies in its Android competitors' stables.  And Sony is kindly pricing it with and without HSPA+, so if you're on T-Mobile USA (HSPA+ only, currently), you can get the smartphone for cheaper.

In terms of competition, the Xperia ZL (and its slimmer twin) go up against Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (KSC:005930Galaxy S IV and HTC Corp.'s (TPE:2498HTC One -- both of which are 1080p handsets.  The Sony device also competes with the Apple, Inc. (AAPLiPhone 5, which while trailing the competition in many hardware metrics remains competitive on merits of its strong brand, strong app selection, long battery life, and the preference of some buyers for smaller screens.

Here's how the device stacks up spec-wise versus the competition (click either image to enlarge):
                Smartphones wide
Spec comparison

Notice that overall the Xperia ZL offers a pretty nice spec package, and is well priced, but it suffers from a poor body design, slower processor, and lower built-in storage.

The biggest problem is perhaps the Xperia ZL's lack of any major selling features.

Sony is bragging about the Bravia engine, which uses GPU acceleration to offer real-time color correction, improved imaging, and other perks.  But the results, according to early reviews, are less than impressive.  Also onboard is the STAMINA battery technology, which is supposed to detect when the phone is not in use and turn off stuff.  But according to early reviews battery life on the Sony smartphone remains less than great.

And then there's the question of visibility.  Online orders are great, but without strong marketing a phone is unlikely to succeed in the U.S. Samsung and Apple are already marketing juggernauts, while HTC is getting more aggressive in terms of marketing.

Thus don't expect the Xperia ZL -- currently on pre-order -- to make much of a commotion in the U.S., but it's still an interesting option for buyers willing to think outside the box.

Source: Sony

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Why again?
By LordSojar on 3/27/2013 3:23:22 PM , Rating: 3
Are we now comparing Sony's mid-high tier phone with Samsung's, LG's and Apple's "superphone" tier?

Compare the Xperia Z (not the ZL) to the rest. It shames them all, handily. Water resistant up to 3 feet and dust proof? Yeah, they all get curb stomped on just that fact. The hardware and chassis of the Z is also impeccable and gorgeous. That would be the phone to get this year when it debuts.

RE: Why again?
By Milliamp on 3/27/2013 4:17:11 PM , Rating: 1
At $750 I don't think you can call the Sony a mid-tier phone.

RE: Why again?
By LordSojar on 3/27/2013 4:23:02 PM , Rating: 2
I said mid-high. Sony's pricing off contract is of course absurd, as is every other manufacturer's. Welcome to US designed pricing. Subsidies! Herp derp

RE: Why again?
By Mitch101 on 3/27/2013 5:03:44 PM , Rating: 2
Thats kind of the problem I have with the Galaxy S4 its rumored to be expensive even with a contract.

To me these are designer or exclusive phones not for the general consumer.

RE: Why again?
By Milliamp on 3/27/2013 7:28:18 PM , Rating: 2
In the US, because of the contract pricing structure even 8 year olds and people who are unemployed are walking around with the latest Samsung or iPhone.

RE: Why again?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/27/2013 8:05:59 PM , Rating: 2
Thats kind of the problem I have with the Galaxy S4 its rumored to be expensive even with a contract.

Yeah well so far half the 'rumors' about the GS4 have turned out to be BS, so we'll just have to see.

Obviously it represents a significant investment on Samsung's part to bring such state of the art to the market, so depends on what you feel is too "expensive" for it.

RE: Why again?
By Mitch101 on 3/27/2013 8:41:44 PM , Rating: 2
In a way Im glad Samsung is pushing out such a device like the S4. If you got the cash to shell out why not a top end phone that's overkill and there is probably enough people out who can afford it to justify the price.

So the two rumors I heard is there will be 4 models of the S4 for varying budgets. The second one I heard is the initial model in the US will be a quad core not an octo.

Unfortunately Im cheap and my max for a phone is $200 with a contract so Ill be more mainstream.

RE: Why again?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/27/2013 6:09:44 PM , Rating: 2
The price of the phone is completely irrelevant, statistically speaking, nobody buys their phones anyway. They're all on a 2 year contract, where the cost is hidden.

RE: Why again?
By sleepeeg3 on 3/28/2013 2:24:30 AM , Rating: 2
Z does not support 4G bands, according to this article:


RE: Why again?
By chick0n on 3/28/2013 5:36:31 AM , Rating: 2
it does support 2100, all it needs is another link, it's either 700 MHz or 1700 (AWS, T-mobile) MHz. and it's fairly easy to make a small change to enable it.

RE: Why again?
By lagomorpha on 3/28/2013 6:32:13 AM , Rating: 2
Water resistant up to 3 feet

Eh, call me when I can use it to send picture messages while SCUBA diving.

No butter?
By danjw1 on 3/27/2013 3:35:00 PM , Rating: 1
Am I wrong or does this handset not benefit from project butter? I think that was 4.2+ so with a 4.1.2 it wouldn't get that. This maybe the reason for the pricing.

RE: No butter?
By MadMan007 on 3/27/2013 3:53:07 PM , Rating: 3
4.1 = project butter.

RE: No butter?
By danjw1 on 3/27/2013 4:05:03 PM , Rating: 2
Ok, I stand corrected.

By flyingpants1 on 3/27/2013 10:56:56 PM , Rating: 2
"And Sony is kindly pricing it with and without HSPA+, so if you're on T-Mobile USA (HSPA+ only, currently), you can get the smartphone for cheaper."

What? Did you mean without LTE or..? T-Mobile has LTE now.

RE: What
By flyingpants1 on 3/27/2013 11:01:36 PM , Rating: 2
And your specs are wrong, One is 1.7GHz not 1.5GHz

RE: What
By MZperX on 3/29/2013 11:37:09 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, this sentence didn't make sense to me either...

SD slot
By synapse46 on 3/27/2013 4:32:57 PM , Rating: 2
I find it odd the sony has an sd card slot and the htc one does not.

By synapse46 on 3/27/2013 4:42:31 PM , Rating: 2
I like that the sony is nearly 2ths of an inch smaller than the htc but the screen is 3ths larger. Looks neat to me.

By BZDTemp on 3/27/2013 4:47:09 PM , Rating: 1
The iPhone5 is so far behind it is not even funny. Lower screen resolution, no NFC, fragile and an OS that is getting old as well.

In fact if the list should include any sub 1080p phones it should have been the Lumia 920 instead as compared to the iPhone it has higher resolution, better camera tech, NFC, wireless charging and a modern OS.

By seamonkey79 on 3/27/2013 7:15:30 PM , Rating: 1
Even the Blackberry would be a better choice.

By tayb on 3/27/2013 8:54:31 PM , Rating: 2
It's inferior to already available phones and the price isn't anything special. Sony fails again to release a competitive device in the smartphone market.

What are the compelling reasons to buy this instead of the Galaxy S4 or the HTC One? Sony fanboyism?

$760 is MSRP
By rkgriffin on 3/27/2013 9:38:18 PM , Rating: 2
I ordered the Xperia ZL from in the US this week and it skipped today for $575 total. No tax, free shipping. I am sure you will be able to find it cheaper than that soon.

I swear some of you have never heard of MSRP or have no idea about this phone based on some of the comments.

STAMINA mode works for me
By chick0n on 3/27/2013 9:56:06 PM , Rating: 2
That's why I hardly trust one of those "reviewers" out there. most of them are retarded and have no idea what they are talking about.

For Stamina mode to work, stop enabling Facebook, Gmail, and all other kinds of crap that loads even when you don't check them.

On my Xperia Z, if I turn Stamina mode on, and leave a few apps like Trendmicro, Whatsapp, and a few others in the exception list. my battery life when from 100 to 90 in 18 hours. If it's completely off, goes to 68% in just 8 hours. Most of the Android app runs in the background (and access data which is NOT necessary) and kills battery life.

So go suck it reviewers, using Stamina mode with every freaking thing on will not help you. dumb $hit.

By zilexa on 3/28/2013 6:09:36 AM , Rating: 2
Seriously?? I have had this phone in my hand at MWC and I actually prefer it ABOVE the Xperia Z!
- It has a bit bigger battery
- almost edgeless! This phone is smaller compared to the Z because there are almost no edges. Screen is the same.
- the design, I prefer this above the Z. Also the back is not made out of glass so a bit more robuust.
- no annoying protective covers like the Z has

The ZL has the same specs, with some minor details but its a smaller phone. The ZL is actually only a screen almost without any edges, sides, top and bottom.
They even made a huge screen consisting of many ZL phones. The ZL is not made of glass so more robuust, no annoying protective covers since its not waterproof. This should have been the topmodel and it is actually the topmodel, just without the marketing.

This article really gives a bad impression the ZL being low end... seriously?? You should try both.

pricey for what you get
By Nortel on 3/27/13, Rating: -1
RE: pricey for what you get
By Sazabi19 on 3/27/2013 3:39:56 PM , Rating: 5
Did you really just complain about it being 150g? If you would have just typed in the 1st part you may have had a point. Give me a sec to let out a fart and make up the weight difference between these phones. If someone were to consider this phone and walk into a store and discount this because of weight they probably have a problem. Oh God, this is too heavy, it must be at least 30g heavier than the iPhone, screw this. At least try harder from now on.

RE: pricey for what you get
By Nortel on 3/27/13, Rating: -1
RE: pricey for what you get
By FITCamaro on 3/27/2013 4:57:22 PM , Rating: 2
Exercise more then. The Sony phone is also far larger then either iPhone.

My HTC Thunderbolt is 177 grams. I don't notice it in my hand regardless of how I'm using it.

RE: pricey for what you get
By nafhan on 3/27/2013 5:12:36 PM , Rating: 4
Do you even lift bro? :)

Seriously, this is the difference between a (US) soda can 3/10ths full and one 4/10ths full. Most people would not notice.

RE: pricey for what you get
By Reclaimer77 on 3/27/2013 6:06:50 PM , Rating: 4
Typical of all Appletards, he lists something about the competition as a negative, when the same thing about the iPhone he called a positive.

"The iPhone feels solid and not cheap like other Android phones"

But now..

"This Sony plastic crap is too heavy compared to the iPhone"

RE: pricey for what you get
By Reclaimer77 on 3/27/2013 5:53:45 PM , Rating: 3
"pricey for what you get"

Coming from an iPhone fanboi, this is pretty ironic...

Do you guys even HAVE 1080p? :)

RE: pricey for what you get
By retrospooty on 3/27/2013 7:46:25 PM , Rating: 2
This isnt your ordinary iPhone fanboy. Nortel is at the far dimwitted end of that already dim spectrum.

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