Thursday , 14 November 2019

Sony Xperia XA Hands-on, First Impressions: Mid-range Beauty

Xperia XA 06

Sony’s mobile division has had a rough couple of years. Even with an extremely busy release schedule seeing two high-profile flagships launched in a single year, the Japanese firm still struggled to eke out both mind share and market share with its main rivals. It’s not surprising then that we saw Sony revamp their mobile ambitions this year during MWC, killing the high-end Xperia Z lineup and replacing it with the Xperia X.

With the new lineup comes three new devices, and while the Xperia X and X Performance share a common design language, it’s the XA that really caught our eye. Today we’ll be taking a look at the new phone and see if it has what it takes to entice new customers to the Sony brand.

Xperia XA 1

Initial impressions: a gorgeous body with an almost bezel-less display

We’ve seen the Xperia XA in photos before, but to see it in person is something else. While Sony tweaked their OmniBalance design philosophy, the phone is still an Xperia device through and through. What makes it stand out is how incredibly narrow the body is – at just 66.8mm, it’s one of the narrowest phones around, and if you have gorilla paws like us, the phone feels absolutely tiny when you’re holding it.

Xperia XA 04

The extremely narrow body is achieved via the use of an almost bezel-less, edge-to-edge display. It’s amazing how much real-estate is freed up when phones are able to omit the side bezels in their design. Because of the dimensions of the phone, one-handed use is a breeze, and even people with dainty fingers will easily be able to reach the end of the display without any problems. The 5-inch display may just be HD, but it still looks pretty good, and at that size it’s difficult to discern the difference between HD and full HD anyway.

Xperia XA 2

Unfortunately Sony had to make a few compromises in the materials used in the phone. Despite its looks the frame is made out of plastic, though the back of the phone is metal. Going through the phone’s physical features, you’ll see the power button on the middle of the right side of the device, with the volume rocker right below it. There’s a physical shutter button on the same side as well, near the bottom that can do half presses for focus. Speaking of the camera, the XA uses a 13-megapixel rear camera along with an 8-megapixel front.

Xperia XA 02

Powering the phone is MediaTek’s MT6755 octa-core processor, better known as the Helio P10. There’s 2GB of RAM on board and 16GB of expandable storage. All of that is powered by Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Sony’s gone ahead and canned most of the UI elements that many people derided in their previous phones, and the device sports an almost stock Android experience.

That’s probably why we were a little puzzled when we felt that the phone wasn’t fast enough. Navigating through the phone feels a little iffy, and the device just doesn’t feel smooth as compared to other mid-range devices in its same price range. To be honest the phone feels as if it doesn’t have enough RAM. It’s the same issue we encountered with the similarly specc’d Flash Plus 2, though again this may just be a case of the phone’s software not being final. Hopefully Sony addresses that little hiccup.

Xperia XA 05

As far as pricing goes, the Xperia XA is priced at Php 13,990. We’ll be getting our review unit soon, so stay tuned till then.

12 comments

  1. Avatar

    Guess the software isn’t final yet, as it suffers from marshmallow’s memory drain problem.

  2. Avatar

    If they made this 11 or 12K.. this would sell considering the are up against the Samsung J7… This is better than the J5 though..

  3. Avatar

    To unbox, please do a comparison between p9 lite and the Xperia XA. thanks in advance.

  4. Avatar

    double the price of the Flash Plus 2, with only a newer (but not necessarily more optimized) CPU to show…

  5. Avatar

    .in my experience, it’s not the brand name that counts.. tsk naalala q yung sony xperia sp q na 15k.. hayss wala pa 1year kandaloko loko na.. ang masakit sa damdamin inalagaan q tlga sya na parang baby 🙁 still nasira.. mahal pa ng repair 7k! di nmn sakop ng warranty ung damage.. Ugh!

    • Avatar

      minalas ka lang sa unit mo and please sony ericsson era pa yun 😛 yung mga SE phones ko buhay pa din naman hanggang ngayon 5years old na

  6. Avatar

    I remember my first Android phone was Sony Ericsson Live with Walkman. Three years ko ginamit before ko pinalitan ng Asus Zenfone 2. “BACK” Capacitive key lang ang sira at ginagamit parin til now.

  7. Avatar

    I’m almost pretty sure the lag comes from the OS 6.0. Remember the problems of the first devices who came out with Android 5.0? That memory leak! And most buyers are bashing the device manufacturers! But it was “fixed” with 5.1 update. So, the 6.0 on your review unit must be the culprit on the “iffy-ness” or “laggy-ness” you experienced. I’m pretty sure this will be sorted out soon. All new OS’s have their fair share of bugs.

    NOTE: When i got my Xperia M4 Aqua, it has 5.0 and I dreaded the OS’s problems. Then came the update and everything was fine since.

  8. Avatar

    maybe i just buy the old xperia Z3+ than this…

  9. Avatar

    Quick Poll: Anong phone ang mas maganda bilhin Asus Zenfone 3, or Sony Xperia XA? I was basing it on the price and the looks of both phone. Maganda kasi specs nang Zenfone 3 kaso maganda rin naman ang bezeless design nang sony. So which phone to buy? 🙂

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