REVIEW: Sony Mobile Xperia S


For about two months now, i’ve been using the Sony Mobile Xperia S for this review. Finally, i’m posting the review while i’m about to start another smart phone review this week. The Xperia S is the first smart phone or the first phone in fact under the brand name–Sony Mobile. After the Xperia S, several smart phones under the Xperia series come out one after the other.
The Xperia S is now selling under P25k in several stores. The price is quite fair considering the features this phone has. I was not able to update the OS of this review unit to ICS (IceCream Sandwich) since there’s no USB cable that accompanied with the device when i took it from Sony Mobile rep.

SPECIFICATIONS

  • OS: Google Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Upgrade to Android 4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) is already available
  • Processor: 1.5Ghz Qualcomm Dual Core
  • Display: 4.3″ scratch resistant TFT capacitive touchscreen; 16M colors; 1280 x 720 pixels screen resolution
  • Camera: (rear/main) 12.1Mp with 1080p, auto-focus, 16x digital zoom, LED flash. (front) 1.3Mp with 720p
  • Video Recording: HD 1080p
  • Memory: 1 to 1.5GB (internal), 1GB (RAM), 32GB (eMMC flash memory)
  • Battery: Talktime (8 hrs 30 mins) Standby (up to 420 hours) Music listening (25 hours)
  • Size: 128 x 64 x 10.6mm (5 x 2.5 x 0.4 inches)
  • Weight: 144 gms (5,1 ounches)
  • Entertainment: TrackID music recognition, xLOUD, FM radio, 3.5mm audio jack, 3D surround sound, PlayStation certified and TV Launcher
  • More specs

BENCHMARKING

AnTuTu Benchmark v2.8.3

Running this Android Benchmarking tool on this Xperia S shows the device has scored 5974 (Xperia Arc S= 3592) and ranked 5th next to Asus Transformer Prime, Samsung Galaxy Note, Samsung Galaxy Nexus, and Samsung Galaxy S II .

CAMERA WORKS

Main Camera (12MP) Shots
Camera setting: Rear Camera, Long shot, Focal lens at maximum wide, Auto Screen Recognition, stabilizer is on. Location & Time: Pandanon Island shores at midday

 
(Left image) Shot taken at sunset (past 5pm) enroute to Mactan Island from Pandanon Island. (Right image) Shot taken at near Punta Engaño fronting Moven Pick Hotel in Mactan Island at around 7pm.
   
Front Camera (1.3MP) Shots
Camera setting: Front Camera, No Zoom feature, stabilizer is on, photo light is off (for the indoor shot at right)
 

Using Zoom Lens
Camera setting: Front Camera, Zoomed in shots(1st & 2nd images @ 20 meters off; 3rd image @ less than 10 meters off)

 

Building/Road light Illumination
Camera setting: Rear Camera, Zoom lens @ maximum, photo light is off, street light illumination

Document/Print Materials Shots

Camera setting: Rear Camera, zoom lens @ maximum, shots taken by dollying the camera phone

Panoramic Shot
Unbelievably this shot (below) is taken just less than 10 meters from the gate and it shows an almost 180-degree view of the front yard. I made several attempts taking the Sweep Panoramic shot in different occasions but i ended up with a grey area at the end of the shot. But this one, was made perfectly by my son. By the way, this is a raw shot.

HD VIDEO RECORDING

INDOOR SHOT
Camera Setting: Rear camera, Scene recognition: off, Exposure:0, Photolight: off, Stabilizer: on
OUTDOOR SHOT
Camera Setting: Rear camera, Scene recognition: off, ExposureL 0; Stabilizer: on

WHAT IS BETTER

The Sony Mobile Xperia S may not be your ideal phone but it’s worth your money.What i’d like most in the Xperia S:

  • large screen, display is awesome
  • light weight and has a nice grip in your hand due to the curve design of its back
  • design is elegant despite the plastic case
  • the physical camera button makes shooting easier
  • the 12Mp camera offers great pictures; focusing while zooming in is a little bit better than the Xperia Arc S
  • the image/video color is outstanding
  • its dual-core engine is fast enough
  • 3G/HSDPA connection is consistent with less battery consumption. Tested it for several hours on stationary and mobile positions.

WHAT IS LACKING?

  • no expansion for memory
  • the back cover is not really fit to the body and could be a passage way for dust to slip in.
  • battery is not removable while playing on it won’t last a day.
  • sometimes the three capacitive buttons (Back, Home, Menu) has touch delays.
  • i still have trouble perfecting the Sweep Panoramic shot. I always end up getting grey area at the end of the panorama.
  • Zooming in while recording a video is erratic and not that smooth as the regular video camera.
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