updated 09:23 pm EST, Mon January 7, 2013
Highlights: Snapdragon S4 pro, 13MP Exmor RS HDR camera
As expected, Sony has officially revealed the Xperia Z at the Consumer Electronics Show, its latest Android flagship. The Xperia Z is equipped with a 5-inch FullHD 1080p "Reality Display," Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core processor, 13 megapixel fast-capture back camera and LTE. A global launch is expected for the new smartphone in the first quarter of 2013.
The smartphone shares capabilities with the Sony digital camera line and features Exmor RS for mobile, the world's first image sensor with High Dynamic Range (HDR) video for smartphones. The Xperia Z also includes Battery Stamina Mode, that can improve the standby time by up to four times by automatically shutting down battery-draining apps whenever the screen is off and starting them up again when the screen is back on.
Pre-loaded on the Xperia Z are the Walkman, Album and Movies apps which enable discovery of media through a single access point. The Walkman application provides access to downloaded music, plus a library of 18 million songs to explore from the Music Unlimited service and Facebook social integration. The Movies application gives consumers access to over 100,000 movies and TV series from Video Unlimited, while the Album application enables easy access to Facebook friends' photos as well as browsing photos sorted by location.
The Xperia Z and a smaller form-factor Xperia ZL model available in some markets will launch loaded with Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) and will be upgraded to 4.2 "shortly after launch" according to Sony. Pricing and carriers have not been announced.