Sony’s latest flagship handset, the Xperia Ion, was launched this week. This Android smartphone with a 4.6-inch display is among the few handsets out there that has a variant that supports the much faster LTE network.
Obviously, the Xperia Ion wants to play with the big guys in the Android smartphone market. Sony packed this device with a powerful dual-core SnapDragon S3 1.5GHz processor (the same one that’s on the Sony Xperia S). Although, the mobile phone giant still doesn’t have those four cores such as the ones we’ve seen on the HTC One X and the Samsung Galaxy S3 — it can do the job just as well, nonetheless.
What it lacks in cores, however, makes up for something else – like a huge 12-megapixel full HD camera.
Here’s the Ion’s complete list of hardware specifications:
Sony Xperia Ion specs:
4.6″ HD Reality Display @ 720×1280 pixels, 323ppi
Sony Mobile BRAVIA Engine
Qualcomm MSM8260 Snapdragon S3 1.5GHz dual-core
Adreno 220 graphics
16GB internal storage
up to 32GB via microSD card
HSDPA 21.1Mbps, HSUPA 5.8Mbps, LTE Cat3 50Mbps
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
FM Radio tuner
12MP autofocus, rear camera w/ LED flash
1080p video recording @ 30fps
1.3MP front-facing camera w/ 720 video recording 30fps
Android 2.3 Gingerbread
1900mAh Li-Ion battery
144 grams (weight)
133 x 68 x 10.8mm (dimensions)
Now, let’s break it down in bit-sized pieces and share to you what we did or didn’t like about this handset.
What we like about the Xperia Ion:
Huge HD display - The Xperia Ion boasts a 4.6-inch HD Reality Display with 720p resolution for a very crisp and vivid picture quality. The large, high-resolution display is great with watching videos and playing mobile games on the handset.
Superb build quality - Most other flagship smartphones are built with some type of coated polycarbonate. The Xperia Ion was built with mostly metallic chassis making it more solid and tough. It even has a bit of heft to it, giving you the impression of its build quality.
12MP monster camera - The rear camera takes really good still photos and full HD 1080p videos, while the front-facing camera has 720p quality and can be used for video calls.
Blazing-fast LTE support - Now, imagine mobile Internet speeds of up to 100Mbps download speeds on this phone, that would have been a blast! Unfortunately, we could not test it since we still do not have any commercial LTE service in the Philippines.
Still, it’s also noteworthy to point out the high-capacity Li-Ion battery, which is rated at 1900mAh; built-in support for NFC (near field communication) and large internal storage of 16GB complete the package.
What we did not like about the phone:
Still on Gingerbread - We expected an Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for a flagship handset – so what’s up with that, Sony? Nevertheless, the Japanese electronics company promised that ICS will be out by middle of August.
The Sony Xperia Ion will be available in retail stores by next week with a suggested retail price of P29,990. It’s still a bit steep but offers a bigger screen for those who think the Xperia S was already a good buy. If only there was any LTE service available commercially in the Philippines, the Xperia Ion could have a unique selling proposition.