CES Las Vegas is always a best place for Sony to show off their latest technologies for the year and yesterday in CES 2014 at Sony's press event they have unveiled the long waited miniature version of the current flagship Xperia Z1, The Xperia Z1 Compact. All the power of Z1 in a smaller dimension.
1) Design and Durability
Xperia Z1 Compact features the same "Omni Balance" design language of Sony, crafted with metal (Aluminium) and glass to give a pure premium look. Dimension of 127 x 64.9 x 9.5mm is very pocket friendly and it weights only 137g which is the same weight of my Xperia L. Both sides of the phone is covered with glass. Sony did put a shatter proof scratch resistant glass to the front side and back side might be having a dragon trail glass. still no info about it though. This phone also have the IP 58 Certification for dust and water resistance, so it pass well with my durability expectations as i like to do herpetological photography outdoors with varies weather conditions.
Xperia Z1 Compact features a 4.3" Triluminos IPS display with 720x1280 resolution resulting a 342ppi pixel density. Displays of recent Sony smartphones haven't impress the consumers well. The main reason is the viewing angle problem and less bright screens. Even the Xperia Z1 facing this issue. But Xperia Z1 Compact is going in a different direction with it's display. Sony is using an IPS panel for the Z1 compact range so it should feature the same IPS panel in the international version as well. As you can see in the display comparison image below, Xperia Z1 f the Japanese version of the Z1 Compact clearly shows better colors and better viewing angles. even the Chinese version which is about to launch on 14th of January confirmed to have an IPS panel.
It's good to see Sony shift from conventional TFT to IPS when designing the Xperia Z1 Compact. Even though Sony haven't mension about the IPS panel in the white papers, The marketing manager Stephen Sneeden confirmed Z1C is manufactured with an IPS panel. Another advantage of IPS panel is it consumes less power when compared to normal TFT. That helps to improve battery life as well. Talking about the pixel density, Z1 Compact has 342ppi in other words a retina beating ppi value. Anything above 320ppi looks same to a naked eye.(actually it depends on pixel arrangement as well) So the display expectation passes better than i thought.
Xperia Z1 Compact features the powerful Snapdragon 800 chipset with quad core Krait CPU with a clocking speed of 2.2GHz. The GPU is Adreno 330 which is best for mobile gaming. Due to the HD resolution, Z1 Compact manage to score higher frame rates in benchmarks tests even with it's initial non retail firmware. 2GB RAM may feel plenty to me but that's good to keep phone's operations smooth. check out the Benchmarks done by PhoneArena.com
Gaming on this phone will be so smooth Thanks to the Adreno 330 GPU. so goes the performance as i want
Xperia Z1 Compact has one of the best Android based cameras and camera based smart apps. the 20.7MP Sony G-lens Module is great when it comes to low light. The 1/2.3" Exmor RS image sensor and Bionz Image processor doing the magic under the hood. Thanks to the IP 58 water resistant certification , the user can take images under water without harming to phone. (fresh water) Here are some sample shots of Z1 Compact in initial test firmware
NOTE : images are shrinked to low resolution
5) Battery Life
Battery life is a key factor to consider when buying a new smartphone. Xperia Z1 Compact is powered by a 2300mAh non removable battery which is biggest capacities we have seen in a 4.3" device. LG Optimus L7 II also have a 2400mAh+ battery but it's slightly thicker than Z1 Compact.
Reports from Japan claiming Xperia Z1 f the Japanese version of Z1 compact is out performing Z1 big flagship in battery life tests. It's quite obvious when Z1 Compact has a IPS low res screen compared to High res TFT screen of Z1. Snapdragon 800 is a power efficient processor featuring "Quick Charge 2.0" for 75% of faster charging. Battery seems promising and can expect atleast 1 day of heavy usage till 100% to 0% battery level. There it is.. final expectation is also passed. waiting for the battery tests though.
UPDATE : Battery Life Test results by GSMArena.com
As we expected Z1C scored better than Z1 with a 65hours endurance rating 12 hour+ web browsing and 20 hour+ 3G talk time and 10 hours of video playback. for me any phone above 10 hour web browsing means a factor to buy.
What are the areas you concern when buying a phone? Are you also interested to buy a Xperia Z1 Compact? do comment below and share your views.