Sony Announces New Xperia Z Smartphone Ahead Of CES
January 8, 2013

Sony Announces New Xperia Z Smartphone Ahead Of CES

Michael Harper for — Your Universe Online

Sony has just announced their new flagship smartphone during their press event leading up to the 2013 CES in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Xperia Z boasts an all new design with a clear, 5-inch 1080p HD display and a quad-core Snapdragon processor running Google´s Android 4.1.

Sony´s press event wasn´t without its share of surprises as the company not only announced that the Xperia Z will be waterproof (for some reason) but that they´ll also be releasing a smaller version of the phone as well– the ZL.

As far as smartphones go, the Z is a bit blocky, eschewing the rounded corners and fluid lines of an iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy S.

According to the fine folks at The Verge, the Z weighs a meager 5 ounces and measures 7.9 mm (o.31 in.) thick. Both the front and back panels are covered in a layer of the familiar and sturdy Corning Gorilla Glass, lending the entire device a deep and dark black tone.

Sony has also packed a 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro processor inside and a 13-megapixel shooter around the back. This camera is aided by an illuminated sensor, giving it the ability to capture some likely impressive HDR and low-light images. Sony´s new smartphones can also capture these HDR images while recording video, a nice touch for those who want to make certain they won´t miss a moment.

Many journalists were surprised to hear Sony had decided to make this new smartphone both dust and water repellent, but it wasn´t a particularly bad surprise. In order to protect this device from these elements, Sony had to do some trickery with the ports, hiding them under flap doors and panels. In addition to protecting the phone from small puddles and spills, Sony has also included a “wet finger tracking” technology, allowing it to be used with moist digits.

Also surprising was the announcement of the Xperia ZL, a phone identical in nearly every way to Sony´s new flagship device.

The ZL has some different dimensions– it´s not as tall or wide but it is thicker– yet it has the same processor, camera, screen, and software features. Additionally, Sony didn´t see fit to waterproof the Xperia ZL.

Sony also didn´t see fit to mention how much these devices would cost when they are to be released at the end of the first quarter, nor did they mention which US carriers would get these new phones.

It´s likely we´ll hear more from Sony during this year´s MWC in Barcelona.