Sony is one of the most popular brand names not only in India, but throughout the world. Established in Japan as Sony Corporation in 1946, its started its operations in India only in 1994. In about a period of two decades of its operations in India, Sony brands have come to be known in every household in India. Sony has introduced a variety of electronic appliances, and gadgets in the market with excellent quality.
The company has kept its commitment to quality and service to win the buyers of consumer electronics in India. It has now brand names like BRAVIA, VAIO, Tablet, Handycam, Cyber-shot, Walkman, Xplod, Sony hi-fi, Memory stick and PlayStation attached to the name Sony. Sony's Xperia models have not only become popular for its LCD and LED TVs, but also for its smartphones. Sony had made the announcement of for its Xperia Z and Xperia ZL smartphones at Consumers Electronics Show (CES 2013). Sony had earlier released its water and dust resistant smartphone Sony Xperia Z, and later released Sony Xperia ZL. We will review the features, specifications and availability of Sony Xperia ZL in the following paragraphs.
Networks supported, SIM, release date
Sony Xperia ZL is also known as Sony Xperia C6503, Sony Xperia C6502, Sony Xperia ZL LTE and Sony Xperia ZL HSPA+ depending on the version of the smartphone. The same smartphone is released with the name Sony Xperia ZQ in Brazil.
The versions C6502, C6503 and C6506 of this smartphone support 2G GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 networks. Sony Xperia ZL versions C6502 and C6506 support 3G HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 and version C6503 support 3G HSDPA 850 / 900 / 2100 networks. With regard to 4G networks, the version C6506 supports LTE 700 / 850 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 and version C6503 supports LTE 800 / 850 / 900 / 1800 / 2100 / 2600.
Sony Xperia ZL was announced in January 2013 and was released for sale in March 2013.
Size and weight
The dimensions of Sony Xperia ZL is 131.6 x 69.3 x 9.8 mm and the weight of this smartphone is 151 g. This reveals that this smartphone has quite a slim and sleek design. It is quite handy to carry it with its weight of 151 g.
Like most of the latest smartphones in the market, Sony Xperia ZL sports a display size of 5.0 inches. It has a multi-touch TFT Capacitive screen with 16M colours. The display capabilities are enhanced with Timescape UI and Sony's exclusive Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2. It has an HD Reality display resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels and a pixel density of 441 ppi as available in high end featured smartphones like Samsung Galaxy S4. The screen is protected by a shatter proof and scratch-resistant glass.
Sound and memory features
The sound features of Sony Xperia ZL include vibration and MP3 ringtones, a loudspeaker with stereo speakers and a 3.5 mm jack. The onboard memory for this phone is 16 GB. There is a microSD card slot, to expand memory up to 64 GB. To facilitate the ease of multi-tasking jobs, this smartphone is provided with 2GB RAM which compares well with premier smartphones in the high range segment.
Connectivity for internet and data transfer & speed
The internet and data connectivity features of Sony Xperia ZL are quite advanced. These include 2G, 3G, 4G, GPRS, EDGE, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot, DLNA, Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP, NFC, Infrared port and MicroUSB 2.0 (MHL). The connectivity speed is superb with HSDPA, 42 Mbps, HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; LTE, Cat3, 50 Mbps UL and 100 Mbps DL.
Camera and video features
Sony Xperia ZL has very advanced camera and video features available in today's high end featured smartphones. The rear primary camera is of 13 MP which can snap pictures up to superb image resolutions of 4128 x 3096 pixels. Features of this camera include autofocus, LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, image stabilization, HDR and sweep panorama. The camera has the capability of recording and playing HD videos at 1080p @30fps with video stabilization and HDR. The front facing 2 MP secondary camera for video calling can also record videos at 1080p @ 30fps.
OS, Chipset, CPU, GPU and Sensors
Sony Xperia ZL is an Android based phone, which runs on Android 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean) OS with a provision of upgrading the OS to the Google's latest Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean). The smartphone is powered by a 1.5 GHz quad core Krait processor with a chipset support of Qualcomm MDM9215M / APQ8064. The graphics in this smartphone are supported by Adreno 320 GPU. Xperia ZL has sensors like accelerometer, gyro, proximity and compass. The model C6502 of this phone has additional barometer sensor.
Messaging, browser, radio, GPS, Java and colours
The messaging support for Sony Xperia ZL is similar to many smartphones in this category. This is done through SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email and IM. The supported browser for this phone is HTML5. Xperia ZL provides an entertainment support through a stereo FM radio with RDS. There is an A-GPS support and GLONASS. Java is supported via Java MIDP emulator. The smartphone is available in three colours black, white and red.
Video and audio file formats supported
Sony Xperia ZL supports video file formats like MP4/H.263/H.264/WMV player. The audio file formats support is for MP3/eAAC+/WMA/WAV/Flac player.
Sony Xperia ZL like many other smartphones, has additional features like SNS integration, TV-out (via MHL A/V link), organiser, active noise cancellation with dedicated mic, photo viewer / editor, document viewer, Google Chrome, Google play, Google search, Google voice search, Google maps, NeoReader barcode scanner, voice memo / dial and predictive text input.
Sony Xperia ZL comes equipped with a powerful non-removable Li-Ion 2370 mAh battery. This gives a talk-time support of up to 10 hours for 2G or up to 13 hours for 3G connectivity. The stand-by time support is for up to 500 hours for 2G or 3G connections. The music can be continuously played up to 40 hours with the support of this battery.
Price and availability
A very important aspect, which the buyers keep in their mind while spending a heavy amount on a smartphone is its price. Usually, the manufacturers will announce an MRP for a smartphone at the time of its release in the market. Immediately afterwards, the prices with the online and offline shops, will vary depending on the discounts offered by the sellers and demand and supply position of the phone in the market. When I checked the prices at various online shops as at the time of writing this article, I found that the best price is offered by Flipkart at Rs.30,875 with free Snap on cover. Naaptol sells this smartphone at Rs.33,199. This smartphone is priced Rs.34,990 at Mirchimart, Tradus, Maniacstore, Zoomin and Themobilestore. Homeshop18, Infibeam, Next, Indiatimesshopping and Gadgetsguru have quoted the same phone at Rs.35,990. As such, the buyers are advised to browse the prices at price comparison websites like mobile.pricedekho.com, mysmartprice.com, smatix.com, before they take a buying decision.
Conclusion and review
Sony Xperia ZL is one of the best smartphones in the premier range and compares well with smartphones in this range from other mobile manufacturers like Samsung, LG, Nokia, HTC, Apple and some of the Chinese smartphone makers like ZTE and Huawei . It is based on the popular design, build-quality and easy to use interface of Sony. Sony Xperia ZL offers exclusive Sony Apps for live music and video streaming, which also make a provision for music downloads. It is hoped that Sony will be able to do a good business with this smartphone in the premier segment of highly priced smartphones.
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I really like the features of 6503 GL but not the China make. The one made in Japan is much heavier in weight. I am after the Japan model here in Kuwait. Can you tell me who are the dealers in Kuwait and what is the price?