In fact, the camera is one area where Sony is investing quite heavily, with John Featherstone, Head of Business Development for Asia Pacific at Sony Mobile Communications, telling GadgetGuy that the company is “basically taking an Alpha [camera] and chucking it into a handset”, delivering almost two hundred points of phase detection.
“It is the most accurate autofocus in the [smartphone] market,” he said, adding that “we wanted to have faster autofocus, and now it’s under the blink of an eye.”
To put it into perspective, a human blinks in between 0.1 and 0.4 seconds, and this is 0.03 seconds. Yikes.
Battery life is also said to be as good, with Sony focusing on two days of life again, though depending on how you use the phone, you may get less, of course.
And depending on how you use the phone, your device may survive an encounter with the elements, as water resistance has returned.
That’s one of the things that made the Xperia range stand out in the past, though this time around, Sony will be talking about the slight ruggedisation in a different way.
“We’re going to get some simple messaging to the customer,” said Featherstone to GadgetGuy, saying that “it doesn’t man you can go diving with it”, but that “yes you can wash it off and yes you can dunk it in water.”
Different messaging is something that people will need to get across because the simple fact is that IP ratings — what ruggedisation is judged by — tends to be rated for fresh- and clear-water, not sea- or pool-water. As such, there just too many elements to test with salted or chlorinated water, and while a phone might be fine, if you do go diving with it in either the pool or at the beach, washing it off under a tap when you’re done will generally give you better piece of mind.
“We’re going to put more explanations around it,” he said. “We’re just going to try to make it clearer.”
Glass resistance is another issue that popped up in last year’s model, with random breakages on various devices. We didn’t see it, but plenty of customers did, and Sony tells us that it has investigated this and found a way to at least protect against it, making the glass thicker and pushing it deeper into the unit.
That should at least help the build quality this year, but it won’t be the only improvement to the formula.
Rather, if the Z5 and Z5 Compact aren’t special enough, you’ll have the opportunity to look into a very, very premium model. So premium, in fact, Sony calls it the “Z5 Premium”.