The Sony Xperia Z1S represents a familiar trend in the mobile industry. Just like the titan company Apple, Sony has decided to give the previous year’s model, the Sony Xperia Z1, a bump in speed with the added “s” title. Aesthetically, it is the same device all around. Coming with a IPv5 certified water-resistant and dust proof feature to enhance the durability of the mostly glass hardware, Sony still provides a premium feel in this year’s model.
Coming packed with a 20.7 megapixel G lens camera, 3,000mah battery (non-removal), and a 5-inch 1080p HD display, the device still holds up to other flagship devices on the market today. The newly included Snapdragon 800 processor doesn’t hurt either. From the spec sheet, this would be a no brainer purchase for the average consumer, but knowing the only difference is speed with the Z1s model, it’s also good to be conscious of the fact that the same faults plaguing the predecessor are clear here as well.
The 5 inch 1080p HD display is troubled with washed out colors and terrible viewing angles for a phone made in 2014. Battery life is somewhat sporadic giving me a full days’ worth of power some days, yet only 8-10 hours on others. Stand by times are pretty amazing, but that’s standard in today’s top tier smartphones. In terms of software, the device is running on Android 4.3 which is a glaring disadvantage for the device. Coupled with a Snapdragon 800 processor, shipping the device with the latest version of Android, KitKat, should have been no problem at all. This leads me to believe that even though the device is powerful, it may be forgotten in the variety of devices Sony launches this year.
The most disappointing aspect about the device has to be the camera. Software in terms of the UI option’s for effects and switching between camera and video are spot on; it’s the quality of the pictures themselves that do it all a disservice. Details get washed out in the 20 megapixel output, video doesn’t have OIS so keeping a steady hand is a must when recording, and the special features the software comes with can only be used when shooting in the 20 megapixel output.