10th Sep 2012
After launching the Sony Xperia S earlier this year, Sony upped the ante by recently introducing its elder cousin, the Xperia ion. Despite having only a dual-core CPU, the phone is priced at Rs 37,000, pitting it against the likes of quad-core behemoths such as LG's Optimus 4X HD, the HTC One X, and Samsung's GALAXY S III. Whether it will emerge unscathed from this uphill battle remains to be seen. For now, here are my first impressions of the product, based on a brief hands-on experience.
The Xperia ion features a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor. It has a large 4.6" TFT LCD display, which is fairly bright. The screen's pixel dimensions are 720x1280, resulting in a pixel density of around 320 ppi (the iPhone 4S has 326 ppi). The onscreen icons and text are very sharp. Holding the lightweight phone feels good, but it could have done with a textured back panel for a better grip (and fewer fingerprint smudges). Overall, the build quality is fairly decent. Here's the full list of specifications:
- Quad-band GSM (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz); quad-band 3G (850, 1700, 1900, 2100 MHz), dual-band LTE (Band IV, Band XVII), uses micro-SIM.
- 4.6" scratch-resistant, shatter-proof, 4-point multi-touch TFT capacitive screen with 16 million colours and 720x1280 pixels (320 ppi).
- Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich), PlayStation certified.
- 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm CPU with Adreno 220 GPU and 1 GB of RAM.
- 11.2 GB internal storage, 32 GB microSD card slot.
- 12.1 mp camera with auto-focus, LED flash, Exmor R mobile sensor, Full HD video recording (1080p); Features: 3D Sweep Panorama, Red-eye reduction, Face detection, Touch focus, Image stabilizer, Geotagging, Scene Recognition, Smile Detection.
- Front-facing camera (1.3 megapixel, 720p).
- Micro-USB 2.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b\g\n with hotspot functionality, HDMI-Out, DLNA certified, Assisted GPS, Bluetooth 2.1, NFC.
- Supported Video: MPEG-4, H.263, H.264, 3GP, MP4, MKV, AVI, XviD, WEBM
- Supported Audio: MP3, AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, AMR-NB, AMR-WB, OTA, OGG, M4A, 3GP, WAV, MID.
- FM radio with RDS, 3.5 mm audio jack for headphones.
- Accelerometer, Proximity sensor, Ambient light sensor, Compass, Gyroscope.
- 5.2" x 2.7" x 0.4" (10.6 mm), 144 grammes.
- 1900 mAh battery, Talk Time: 10 hours in 2G (4 hours in 3G), Standby Time: 400 hours in 2G (350 hours in 3G), 12 hours of music, 3 hours of video.
- Available colours: Red, Black.
On the software front, it features Android 4.0 (ICS) with an interface that operates very smoothly. It has a 12 mp camera, along with a dedicated camera button. Unfortunately, it's slightly hard to press. The time between successive shots is very low, while the resulting photographs are fairly decent under good lighting conditions. However, under low light, a lot of noise creeps into the images. Keep your eyes peeled for a full review very soon. In the meantime, here's a video of the interface.
Preview: Sony Xperia ion
A quick look at the elder cousin of Sony's Xperia S.
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