Saturday, June 29, 2013

Packing a Snapdragon 800 processor, The Sony Xperia Z Ultra has upped the game in the phablet wars

In the new world of “phablets” the race to best of the class has just heated up with the newest entry from Sony the Xperia Z Ultra. The Ultra is the latest in the family of Xperia devices. With anticipated releases from HTC and others expected, Sony has beaten the pack to market with a Snapdragon 800 processor powered titan! All pun aside, the initial response glows for this device except for one hitch, no flash? More on that in a moment. Let's take a look at some of the other refinements that are bound to make this a benchmark phone in the phablet arena.
The Z Ultra like all phablets is defined by its screen, in this case a beautiful 6.44 inch 1080p display. As other manufactures are going in the direction of a dedicated stylus Sony takes the interesting direction of allowing pretty much anything you would like to use  as a stylus including a pencil! This is a great plus for me as not all devices are kind to stylus input. This makes creating on the Z Ultra practical as who has a stylus on them at all times?
The beauty of the display is complemented by the thinness of the frame, 6.55 inches thick. To add to the wow factor the device is waterproof up to 3 feet of water for up to 30 mins! Made of metal for a solid all around feel (remind you of any HTC offing yet?) the case is also dust-proof. This is another plus as yet another manufacturer takes the nod form Motorola and builds in protection for real world use.
Now for an interesting turn. When they got to the 13.1mp camera and the 2mp front facing camera, initial reviewers have noted the lack of an external flash! Odd play after reading all of these wonderful details right? Maybe there is some super low light software they will use to offset this? No word yet. Maybe HTC offers a clue with its superior low light sensor in the new HTC One. However there is more to look at.
The phone will be offered initially with 16g internal storage with SD card support. The 3000 mAh battery can support a reported 11 hours of talk time, 5.5 hours of video playback, and 120 hours of audio playback. With LTE support it would seem the concept is the ability to support streaming. As I am experimenting with the new Google Play Radio, I think this device would enhance this experience as battery life is a premium on many phones as bluetooth is the killer of all things fun!
All indicators point to this being a phenomenal device but the lack of external flash, could make a ripple once other competitors release new offerings. Sony and HTC have new projects in the pipes with leaked specs that could be similar. With so much going for it, why kill your momentum by holding back the most common of additions? Size factor of thinness? Not enough space after LTE and SD card added? We may know soon but I feel strange having to gripe about such a small omission.