Today, Sony has officially launched its much-anticipated XZ2 and XZ2 Compact handsets at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. And with a gorgeous new design, impressive camera tech and a whole new sound system, they’re set to be a serious upgrade on last year’s XZ range.
In a major departure from last year’s models, the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact have much thinner bezels, leaving more room for the screen, while the shape of the handset is less angular.
The XZ2 is made from curved Gorilla glass 5, while the XZ2 Compact has a sleek aluminium frame. Both are sturdy and water-resistant and come in a range of four colours that span the front and back of the handsets.
Each colourway comes with a corresponding theme for the home-screen and wallpaper and there are a range of colour-coordinated accessories to match.
And they’re not just pretty to look at either. Using Sony’s expertise in creating high-quality entertainment units, the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact promise to be the perfect devices for watching movies, playing games and listening to music.
Both phones sport a stunning HDR screen with an 18:9 ratio, making display is twice as long as it is wide. So it’s ideal for multitasking, as the screen can be split into two equal squares.
Perhaps more importantly though, the display dimensions effectively give you a widescreen TV in your pocket. So movies on streaming services like Netflix, YouTube and Amazon Prime look even better.
And it’s not just the screen that excels with home-cinema-style skills. Sony has added some
redesigned speakers with surround sound that shout 20% louder than those on its predecessor. And the improved audio quality gives you a clearer, more detailed sound.
It also comes with Sony’s new Dynamic Vibration System, which analyses the sound on whatever movie, game or self-created piece of content you’re watching and causes the handset to vibrate in tandem with what’s happening on screen.
It seems to work on the same principle as a PlayStation controller. So, for example, if you’re playing a combat game and your character gets shot, the XZ2 handset will vibrate. Or if you’re watching a movie with an atmospheric soundtrack, the vibration will build with the music to increase the tension.
Elsewhere, the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are the first smartphones to support 4K HDR movie video recording. Which will bring better colour, sharper resolution, clearer images and a higher dynamic range to your home videos.
Last year’s XZ range offered a new 3D Creator app, which scans an object in 3D. This lets you create a three-dimensional image of your face, your pet or even your food, which you can then upload to social media, use as a live wallpaper or print out using a 3D printer.
However, on last year’s XZ, you could only achieve this with the rear camera. On the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact, though, you can make 3D selfies. And, thanks to a new Facebook update, they’ll be easier to upload than ever before.
Pricing and availability for the Sony XZ2 and XZ2 Compact have yet to be announced. But we’ll let you know as soon as we do.