Sony decided it was time to repackage its portfolio and introduced the world at this year’s MWC to the new Xperia X line, which is also made up of Sony Xperia XA, which is marketed here in Europe for $570 in four different colors. And despite not being a flagship, the smartphone has a very stylish look.
The smartphone has good specifications to compete with other models in its price range, but the great appeal of Sony is clearly in the visual: we have a handsome device very elegant.
Sony Xperia XA: Design and screen
The one that catches attention right away in the Sony Xperia XA is: it has no side edges. That’s it. We even say that it can be more beautiful than the Xperia X. The phone has a body of 143.6 x 66.8 x 7.9 mm, weighing 137 grams. Another interesting thing about it is that its body remembers and much the aluminum, but it is a frosted plastic that leaves a very beautiful touch.
The microUSB port, main microphone, and speaker are on the bottom, while the upper one carries the secondary microphone and the headphone jack. On the right side, we find the on / off button in a more rounded format, not a fingerprint reader. This is one of the weaknesses of the device since most of its competitors have the feature.
Still here, we have the volume control buttons and the dedicated button for the camera. On the other side, we find dedicated slots for two operator chips (Nano SIM) and one for microSD up to 200 GB.
And what we see in Sony Xperia XA is what we already talked about Xperia X: Sony kept the main characteristics of its line, although it has managed to remodel and bring improvements in practically all points.
The rear camera is not jumped and has a metal frame around it; Just below, we have the LED flash that is unique. And the cell phone until it is comfortable to be used. This round cornered look helps in the footprint and the buttons are well positioned. The problem is that he is very slippery, so be very careful.
But the Sony Xperia XA leaves aside the protection against water and dust, one of the most positive points of the Z line. Looking at the visual was very sure because the cell phone is beautiful; But eliminating a key feature, though, was a pretty bad decision. The plastic material also tends to scratch easily, so wearing a hood is also not a bad idea.
On the screen, we have a 5-inch LCD IPS panel with HD resolution (720 x 1280 pixels), with a density of approximately 294 ppi. Sony also includes the Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2 modes, which supposedly improves “picture quality for photos and videos,” and super-vivid, which tends to make colors more vibrant.
This screen occupies a considerable space of the frontal structure, but only on the sides. In the bottom and top, we still have a beautiful space, where Sony may well have added capacitive buttons to take better advantage of the screen of the device.
The picture quality is nice, though. It lacked resolution, and in fact, a Full HD display would make it dissimilar. But here, the device can maintain a beautiful contrast of colors. It can reach 516 lux (we measure with a luminometer), although its visualization in strong sunlight is well impaired.
Dark shades also tend to get … ashes. This is already a bit of LCD standard and here was no different. Sony, however, allows you to manually balance the white on the screen.
Sony Xperia XA: Hardware, Performance, and Games
Within this young intermediary, we find a MediaTek Helio P10 octa-core Cortex-A53 chip, clocked at 2.0 GHz and GPU Mali-T860MP2. It even has 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of memory, with about 10 GB free to use. The overall performance of the phone is pretty cool, and here it has not let us down and has fulfilled what its hardware promises.
The big problem here, though, is that your specs end up not keeping many applications running in the background, as we could see from our performance test. But we confess it was just that. We do not face lockups or very weak performance, although we must warn: he is an intermediary, do not expect incredible performance.
In the benchmark tests, Sony’s mobile phone remained on average for its competitors, reaching 46,000 points on AnTuTu and 593 on 3DMark (with OpenGL 3.0). What really bothered us was that it did not have a fingerprint reader, which the Moto G4 Plus, Zenfone 3 and Quantum Fly direct competitors have.
It does not leave something to be desired when it comes to reproducing the content and can be quite fluid. He may not be able to keep many apps in the background, but he can run them without any problems – especially social networking and the like.
With games, XA’s performance may vary a bit, but nothing to worry about. Heavier titles tend to reduce the graphics quality to get good fluidity, and the cell phone can choke on some parts. Lightweight games, of course, tend to run smoothly on the device.
In our performance test, the cell phone scored 29 fps and 30 fps in titles like Asphalt 8 and Modern Combat 5, respectively. In Subway Surfers, which is lighter, the game ran at 60 fps.
We finally got the software. The Sony Xperia XA runs Android 6.0 factory Marshmallow, with Sony’s interface modifying virtually everything and consuming a very considerable space in memory. This, incidentally, is a very negative point, after all, you will hardly survive for a long time without using a microSD card.
This interface brings changes in the look of basically everything, but it manages to run fluidly in the Sony Xperia XA. And do not get us wrong, this is not a bad review. Sony has come up with a few tricks, such as sliding the screen down to open a search field, and an area with the most commonly used app suggestions in the app drawer.
As for the sound, the model does not have a stereo system and it does not fit into certain requirements, distorting the sound when playing a high music. It is, in fact, a “cellphone sound”, without any very interesting aspect. Sony also does not add headphones to the phone case, which is a sin with the consumer.
Sony Xperia XA: Drums
Despite the good side, we have an Achilles heel on the Xperia XA and it’s on its battery. With a power of 2,300 mAh, the component that is not removable has not impressed us in practically anything in our tests of the battery. Here are some results of our test:
- The cell phone was taken out of the socket at 8 o’clock in the morning, but remained switched on for only 7 hours and 13 minutes;
- The WiFi was on for 5h, and the mobile networks for 2h;
- The screen was on for 3 hours and 38 minutes;
- We recorded an average discharge of 13.7% per hour.
Even your HD screen does not do anything to keep you alive for a long time. Here in TodoCelular, he ended up becoming record holder, but of batteries with low duration.
Sony Xperia XA: Camera
On the back, we have a 13 megapixel camera with f / 2.0 aperture that brings auto focus and phase detection, adding recordings in Full HD and with the possibility of recording with HDR. There is also hybrid focus, from Sony, which tends to track the object in question to keep the focus locked. The feature is cool and works well, but if the object moves quickly, of course, things will not work out perfectly.
Around here we have the manual mode, which ends up sinning in manual resources – which is quite contradictory. Sony has also kept its traditional apps, but what really matters is the quality of the device’s capture.
It has a good angle of capture, which includes a good part of the objects in a scene. The white balance works well and the colors captured by the sensor are very vibrant and beautifully contrasted. All within the standards for an intermediary. But this, of course, in well-lit environments.
When you try to click in places with low illumination, for example, his camera tends to take advantage of the post-processing to compensate for the high noise, resulting in images with more washed colors and also sintering the details.
On the front, we have an 8-megapixel sensor also with f / 2.0 aperture and records in Full HD. The results, however, were not so satisfactory: even in well-lit places, this camera tends to pull into the “beautification mode,” even with it turned off. This results in more washed images, leaving everything looking weird.
Sony Xperia XA: Conclusions
What saves, in fact, the Sony Xperia XA, is its visual (which, we agree, is very beautiful) and the hardware matches the competition. On the drums, though, the device does a lot, and it also leaves out features such as the fingerprint reader and protection against water and/or dust.