All posts tagged sony

A new update to the Sony WALKMAN application is now rolling which moves the build number from version 8.4.A.5.4 to 8.5.A.0.6. The main new feature is Android Wear support – you can control music playback from your Android Wear device. In addition, you can also download playlists to your Android Wear device. Seems like a great update if you recently bought the SmartWatch 3.

DOWNLOAD: WALKMAN (8.5.A.0.6)

The Sony Xperia Z3 and Xperia Z3 Compact launched with what looks a near-identical camera spec to its predecessors. However, a couple of differences included a wider-angle camera lens (25mm G Lens) and a maximum ISO of 12,800 for low-light photography. The latter is what Sony is highlighting in this latest infographic.

The infographic shares some fun facts around low-light photography and what makes the Xperia Z3 series so capable. This includes explaining what the ISO number actually means, some tips from professionals and social stats. Check it out below.

Print

Via Sony Mobile Blog.

PS4 Remote Play for the Sony Xperia Z3 series went live at the end of October, with support added for the Xperia Z2 and Z2 tablet earlier this month through the Android 4.4.4 firmware update. Despite this, the one key accessory that has been used in all ‘PS4 Remote Play’ marketing material has been absent. We are of course referring to the Sony Game Control Mount GCM10 for the PlayStation DUALSHOCK 4 controller.

Well the Sony GCM10 Mount is finally available via the Sony Mobile Store UK for £24.99. Strangely, the GCM10 is not available across other European Sony Mobile Store sites and is currently out of stock across other third-party sites such as Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.de. While you wait for availability to widen, check out Sony’s latest PS4 Remote Play marketing video below.

Sony has announced a new 1/2.4-inch 21 megapixel camera sensor in the form of the Exmor RS IMX230 that will be found in future smartphones. Sony says this is the first stacked CMOS imaging sensor with an on-board image plane phase detection AF signal processing function.

What this means in plain English, is that it is capable of keeping focus of fast-moving objects. Sony says that up to 192 auto-focus points can be used (as seen in the picture below), with the entire work carried out by the sensor’s internal image processing circuits.

Sony Exmor RS IMX230_2

Another new feature is HDR (High Dynamic Range) support for high-resolution still images and 4K video recording. Sony says that the new sensor will start shipping in April 2015, so there is a strong likelihood that we will see the IMX230 chip included in Sony’s next flagship.

In terms of future roadmap, Sony plans to release a 16 megapixel CMOS camera sensor by March 2016 that will also feature high-speed autofocus (image plane phase detection AF) and HDR support for 4K (4096 x 2160) videos and high-res still images.

Key Specifications – Sony Exmor RS IMX230

Number of effective pixels: 5344 (H) x 4016 (V) 21 megapixels
Image size: Diagonal 7.487mm (Type: 1/2.4)
Unit cell size: 1.12μm (H) x 1.12μm (V)
Key features: Image plane phase detection AF, HDR imaging, white spot correction, NR
Image format: Bayer RAW

Sony Exmor RS IMX230_1

Thanks @walaspancha!

Is this the Xperia Z4 LCD Touch Digitizer?

Categories: News
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Xperia Z4 Touch Digitiser_1The time has come for the first solid Xperia Z4 rumours we have come across. The pictures you see below supposedly show the official LCD Touch Digitizer from the Sony Xperia Z4. The pictures handily compare the part against the Xperia Z3 and appear to reveal a very similarly sized display for both handsets.

The differences between the two include a swapped placement of the front-facing camera and proximity sensor, whilst the stereo speakers have moved to the top and bottom edges. If true, it would seem that the Xperia Z4’s stereo speakers will be similar to the Xperia Z2. We’ll bring you more Xperia Z4 rumours as we have them.

Xperia Z4 Touch Digitiser_1

Xperia Z4 Touch Digitiser_2

Xperia Z4 Touch Digitiser_3

Xperia Z4 Touch Digitiser_4

Via FutureSupplier (PhoneArena).

 

It is perhaps a bit too early to be talking about Sony’s CES 2015 press conference, but the date has been published so mark your diaries. The press conference will take place on Monday 5 January 2015 at 17.00 (PST) or 01.00 GMT/02.00 CET on 6 January for Europeans.

There’s no guarantee that Sony will reveal the Xperia Z4, or whatever its next flagship will be called. Last year, we saw the Xperia Z1s for T-Mobile and Xperia Z1 Compact announced at the Las Vegas tradeshow. There is a good chance that Sony may keep its powder dry for a MWC reveal of new flagship hardware. CES

Sony’s Xperia Z3 wireless charging kit demoed

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Sony will shortly launch the wireless charging kit for the Xperia Z3 which includes the WCR14 Wireless Charging Cover and WCH10 Wireless Charging Plate. Sony uses the Qi standard for wireless charging, so any charging plate should work. However, Sony is offering both items in one package for around the £60 mark in the UK.

Some places do have stock, for example third-party sellers onAmazon UK. Others have already sold out of their initial stock including MobileFun and Clove. If you want to see the two accessories in action before pushing that buy button then check out the video below.

SmartBand Talk in video unboxing

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The SmartBand Talk recently started to ship, if you want to get an idea of what’s included in the box then check out the unboxing video from our friends at Btekt. It shows the wearable’s E Ink display in action and how comfortable it fits on a wrist.

The SmartBand Talk has a 1.4-inch (296 x 128) curved E Ink display, an IP68 rating for dust/water resistance and a built-in microphone and loudspeaker for voice control and call handling. The band also includes a built-in accelerometer, altimeter sensor technology, Bluetooth 4.0 and a 70mA battery good for three days of battery life.

Sony Xperia Z3 Review

Categories: Reviews, Tech
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Sony has released not one but two Z3 handsets recently. The other is the Z3 Compact, but this one is the hero device — bigger, but does that mean it’s necessarily better?

The Xperia Z3 looks similar to its predecessor, with the same glass back and front on a metallic casing. But this time the edges are a little more rounded, taking the edge off the overall ‘slabness’ of what is, let’s face it, a pretty hefty phablet. That’s a welcome addition, as is the sliver sliced off the thickness bringing it down to a whisker over 7mm and the 9g reduction in weight.

DSC_0051

Screen & chassis
The screen size remains the same at 5.2 inches, though the resolution has been beefed up to 1,920×1,080 pixels. It’s strikingly clear and sharp, using Sony’s telly technology to deliver deep contrasts and vivid colours. The pixel count may not be as high as some, but Sony’s defence that the supposed (very small) improvement in picture quality delivered by resolutions significantly higher than full HD just isn’t worth the price of reduced battery life does seem to hold some water here.

Like other high-end Xperias, it’s waterproof and dustproof, capable of surviving a freshwater dunking of up to half an hour in 1.5m of fresh water — meaning it can survive much more than getting splashed a spilled drink or an accidental dip in the bath.

Software & processor
The Z3 is running the very latest 4.4.4 version of Android KitKat with the usual design tweaks from Sony, plus a whole slew of extra features, including the Lifelog health tracker, Sony Select — which pulls together various apps — and PlayStation, so you can play your PlayStation games on your phone anywhere around your home.

The quad-core processor is clocked at 2.5GHz and backed by 3GB RAM. That means it’s fast, basically, and it delivered a score of 42,276 in our usual AnTuTu benchmark test. That’s not quite up there with Samsung’s latest Galaxy designs like the Alpha or Note 4 but it’s still impressively slick and powerful, whipping through menus and balancing a handful of apps simultaneously with no sign of slow down.

DSC_0052

Photography

At first glance the 20.7-megapixel camera appears to be the same as the Z2’s, but closer inspection reveals that there have been some improvements — the lens is a little wider and the ISO sensitivity has been bumped up to 12,800. This being Sony it has plenty of options to play with, including Smile Shutter and face registration, as well as a wide range of modes and effects like timeshift video and background defocus.

The wider lens, along with that additional ISO sensitivity, plus Sony’s Exmor RS sensor all make for better quality snaps in low light, but the autofocus isn’t quite as fast as we’d like and we often found ourselves with a frustrating wait of a second or two while it got itself together. In general, the auto settings could often be a bit hit and miss, especially if you’re in a hurry, but if you’re prepared to take some time to play with the settings, the Z3’s camera has plenty to offer, with realistic colours and plenty of detail to reward your patience. And of course, the physical shutter button on the side means you can take underwater shots too.

The Z3 comes with 16GB of in-built memory, which might not sound like much to app fiends, but you can add up to 128GB via microSD card.

The 3,100mAh battery held up very well in our testing, and if we didn’t quite the full two days that Sony suggests, we were close enough to believe that with a little care it can easily be done. And for a high-end, demanding handset like this, that’s impressive.

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Conclusion
Sony has been revising its Z series and it’s getting steadily better. The distinctive blocky shape has been softened and the specs remain impressively high, with a terrific screen, powerful processor, waterproofing and outstanding camera. And of course, if you already happen to have a PlayStation at home, your next quality handset is really just a choice between the Z3 and its Compact cousin.

Earlier this week, we reported on an issue present in a number of stock Sony Xperia firmware builds that involved a mysterious “Baidu” folder appearing on phones. This folder couldn’t be deleted and what made it worse was that it was making regular pings to Chinese servers. The folder itself was created by the myXperia location application, but it was unclear what was being transmitted.

Well Sony has now responded to the ‘spygate’ claims and reassured that its users have nothing to worry about. They confirm that Sony Xperia phones do not transmit any user data to Baidu. The activity simply relates to Baidu Push Notifications, a common standard in China.

The myXperia application initialises both the Google Cloud Messaging and Baidu Push Notification framework when first activated. The current version of the app uses both systems regardless of where the user is located. However, Sony has promised an update to myXperia is on the way that will only include the Baidu Push Notification framework in Mainland China Xperia variants. Hopefully, this reassures Sony Xperia customers that nothing sinister is underhand.

Rickard – Sony Xperia Support

“I’ve had some further feedback from the guys in our development team. I can confirm that Xperia phones don’t store any user data for transmission to Baidu. The MyXperia app supports both Google Cloud Messaging service and the Baidu Push Notification framework, as do many third party apps, to make sure we can support our China customers as well as those in the rest of the world. Both get automatically initialised when you first activate MyXperia. The IP activity you are seeing is just linked to Baidu’s push notification system, which is an expected behaviour for this application.”

Future updates of MyXperia will be optimised so the Baidu Push Notification framework is only initialized in Mainland China variants of Xperia devices. But as these services are common standards in the industry, other 3rd party applications may also include Baidu Push Notifications or other Baidu services, resulting in the Baidu folder being shared between such applications. Sony Mobile fully reassures all its customers that MyXperia uses a push notification system and does not store any user data for transmission to Baidu.”

Magnus Hilding – Lead Developer of MyXperia at Sony Mobile

“We built the app using both protocols to ensure both our Chinese and global users could enjoy MyXperia. However, we’ve designed later versions to package the service relevant to a specific region only – these updates are right around the corner, rolling out soon.”

Via Sony Mobile Talk.