Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

Sony’s next mobile is a mid-range with pros and cons

It can be very difficult to understand complicated naming conventions, especially when it comes to finding a smartphone. That’s part of the reason we built Pickr, though sometimes even we an struggle with the monikers and model numbers.

Sometimes it would just be nice for manufacturers to say “that’s the good one” and “that’s the cheap one”, and every so often when it happens, “that’s the good one with an even better price”. Fortunately, Sony appears to be getting close to that last one.

This week, an example of a “the good one” but with a better price is on its way to stores, as Sony introduces its XA1 to Australian buyers.
Originally announced back at Mobile World Congress earlier in the year, the XA1 isn’t the new flagship nor is it a new budget model.

Rather, it’s a phone that plays to middle-ground by delivering enough of what you need alongside a camera that going on specs alone appears to have come straight out of its Xperia XZ flagship sibling.

In theory, this makes the XA1 “the good one with an even better price”, because if that’s the case, Sony has packed in aspects of what made the XZ shine in a body that’s a little smaller and a lot easier on the wallet.

They’re not exactly the same, that said, but they do feature some similarities, with the Sony Xperia XA1 sporting a 5 inch screen with a lower resolution, a marginally thinner and lighter design, 32GB storage, and what appears to be the same 23 megapixel rear camera on the back as seen in the flagship XZ.

A good $600 separates the two models, so some things have been changed, such as the chip, the video recording capability, the front camera, and the lack of water-resistance and Near-Field Communication, but otherwise, the phones sport some similarities, and they’re even noticeable on the surface with a similar design, also.

“We’ve taken Sony’s digital camera expertise to deliver the leading rear and front cameras for the Xperia XA1,” said John Featherstone, Managing Director of Sony Mobile in the Oceania region.

“Its exceptional camera technology is perfectly suited to capture everyday spontaneous moments in the most convenient and user-friendly way,” he said. “We know it will exceed expectations.”

Availability of the phone is said to, well, now, where you’ll find it in both JB HiFi and Sony stores for $399 in one of two colours: black or white.

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