Sony Xperia Z1

Brand new camera experience while retaining waterproof design


We're live in Berlin with Sony at its IFA 2013 press conference, and the wraps have just been pulled officially off the new Xperia Z1. As leaks have already indicated leading up to the event, the Xperia Z1 looks to be the Japanese manufacturers late 2013 flagship Android smartphone.

The Xperia Z1 is completely waterproof, sports a massive 20.7MP camera with improved 3x lossless digital zoom and several new camera software improvements. We're looking at a 1080p "Triluminous" display on front and the latest internals backing it up inside.

We now have the full press release and a few more images after the break. We'll be going hands on with the Xperia Z1 a little later, but in the meantime keep it locked to Android Central for continuing coverage of Sony's announcements from Berlin. 

More: Sony Xperia Z1 ForumFollow the Sony Live at IFA liveblog

Sony Xperia Z1

Sony Xperia Z1

Sony introduces Xperia™ ​Z1 – a stunning waterproof smartphone with a groundbreaking camera experience

  • Combines the very best of Sony’s technology in a slim, waterproof and beautifully designed Android smartphone
  • True compact camera performance through combination of Sony’s award-winning “G Lens”, large 1/2.3-type 20.7MP “Exmor RS for mobile” CMOS image sensor and “BIONZ for mobile” image processing engine  
  • Innovative suite of Xperia Camera Applications that deliver unique experiences including live social broadcasting
  • Immersive viewing experience via Sony’s TRILUMINOS® Display for mobile and X-RealityTM for mobile
  • Discovery of online and offline content through the integration of Music Unlimited and Video Unlimited with Sony’s media applications
  • Premium and exclusive out of the box entertainment offer from Sony Entertainment Network
  • Unrivalled ecosystem of accessories and companion products

4th September 2013, IFA, Berlin – Sony Mobile Communications (“Sony Mobile”) today introduces Xperia Z1, a premium waterproof smartphone that combines the very best of Sony’s technology, entertainment and wide range of companion products with a unique and groundbreaking camera experience. Xperia Z1 will launch globally from September 2013.

“Xperia Z1 represents a significant milestone for Sony in our continued efforts to deliver unforgettable experiences to our consumers,” said Kunimasa Suzuki, President and CEO, Sony Mobile Communications. “Not only by bringing the power of Sony to the smartphone and through close collaboration with our partners but by setting a new standard in premium smartphones.”

The world's leading camera in a smartphone

The elegant, 5” Xperia Z1 is the latest addition to Sony’s premium Z series of products and brings Sony’s proven world-class technologies to the smartphone like never before - including the very best of Sony’s camera expertise. Xperia Z1 features Sony’s award-winning “G Lens” with a 27mm wide angle and bright F2.0 aperture, custom made large 1/2.3-type CMOS image sensor Exmor RS for mobile with 20.7MP and a BIONZ for mobile image processing engine. The combination of these technologies delivers the same level of quality and performance as a conventional compact digital camera in a slim, waterproof smartphone. Indeed, independent testing has confirmed that Xperia Z1 provides the best overall image quality of all leading smartphones1. This means that Xperia Z1 captures beautiful, sharp and bright images even in lowlight conditions. High shutter speeds and 3x clear image zoom also prevents shots from being blurred while enabling them to be captured at distance. 

Innovative suite of Xperia Camera Applications

Xperia Z1 takes the conventional camera experience to a whole new level by including an innovative set of Xperia Camera Applications that deliver new experiences. Applications at launch include:

Social live: Broadcast precious moments live from Xperia Z1 to Facebook and get your friends’ comments right on your screen.
Info-eye™: Innovative visual search function that provides related information on landmarks and on items such as books or wine simply by capturing them with the camera.
Timeshift burst: Capture the perfect shot every time - Xperia Z1 takes 61 images in 2 seconds - a second before and after pressing the shutter - so you can scroll back and forth to find the perfect image.
AR effect: Overlay a selection of fun, customizable animations to create pictures using Sony’s SmartARTM augmented reality technology.
This experience is supported by a robust ecosystem of established and up-and-coming developer partnerships who are working to create Xperia Camera Applications. Many more apps will be available through the Sony Select recommendation store after launch.

Beautiful design with high power and performance

Xperia Z1 also includes all of the features consumers have come to expect of a Sony smartphone. Its stunning looks combine Sony’s acclaimed OmniBalance design with premium materials and precision engineering in a slim waterproof and dust resistant smartphone (IP55 & IP58). A solid one-piece aluminium frame with tempered glass on the front and back ensures beauty and durability as well as a consistent viewing experience from any angle.

Xperia Z1 features the fully integrated Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 800 processor with 2.2 GHz quad-core CPU and 4G LTE to provide a seamless connected entertainment experience, industry leading battery performance and amazing speed. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor features the latest GPU and dual ISP for incredible graphics, 3D games and videos. The Xperia Z1 also includes a 3000 mAh battery for a high battery performance. Sony’s Battery STAMINA Mode automatically turns off functions to save power when you don’t need them and restarts them when you do.

Incredible out of the box entertainment with Sony’s media applications and technologies

Xperia Z1 integrates PlayMemories Online2, a cloud-based image and video service that is integrated into the Album application. A new ‘All Sync’ feature enables users to instantly auto-upload all of their photos without storage limitation3. 

Sony’s “WALKMAN” and Movies applications are also included and provide access to more than 22 million songs on the “WALKMAN” app through Music Unlimited and more than 150K movies and TV series on the Movies app through Video Unlimited2 from Sony Entertainment Network.

Thanks to the inclusion of Sony’s BRAVIA TV technology, Xperia Z1 features Sony’s unique TRILUMINOS Display for mobile, creating a wider palette of rich natural colours for an immersive viewing experience. It also includes X-Reality for mobile - Sony’s intelligent super resolution technology which analyzes each image and optimizes the quality to deliver super sharp videos. Xperia Z1 also brings Sony’s audio expertise to play with Sony’s ClearAudio+ which automatically optimizes the audio experience without the need to adjust individual settings.

Xperia Z1 comes with an incredible entertainment offer that includes five great movies plus an exclusive movie access pass to the digital release of Sony Pictures’ summer blockbuster Elysium as well as a two month free trial of Sony’s Music Unlimited4 streaming service plus much more.

Xperia Z1 also features a new application called TrackIDTM TV5 that enhances your TV-viewing experience. It lets users search, share and explore information from broadcasted TV shows such as cast & crew, biographies, filmography or show related Tweets.

Unrivalled ecosystem of companion products and smart accessories

Xperia Z1 is supported by an ecosystem of innovative companion products and accessories. All are underpinned by Sony’s one-touch functions with NFC technology which will number approximately 100 compatible products by the end of the year including TVs, headphones, audio speakers, tablets, and more. Key products include:

Companion products to enhance the camera experience

QX10/QX100: High-performance ‘lens-style’ cameras designed for mounting on smartphones and operated through the smartphone screen – a perfect partner for the Z1.
· Smart Imaging Stand IPT-DS10M: An intelligent accessory that helps Xperia Z1 detect smiles and capture special moments without the need to hold the handset

· Smartphone Tripod SPA-MK20M: A versatile tripod perfect for extra stability when taking pictures or capturing video

A host of other companion products and smart accessories that enrich your smartphone experience.

·   SmartWatch 2 – Use as a second screen for Xperia Z1. Read messages, handle calls, easily access notifications – all from your wrist. Trigger the Xperia Z1 camera shutter. Download other camera apps to enhance the Xperia Z1 experience. Sony is working closely with developers for even more optimised apps

·   SBH52 Smart Bluetooth Handset – Splash proof wireless audio accessory that enables you to listen and talk without taking out your smartphone.

·     MDR-10BT NFC headphones and SRS-BTS50 wireless speaker - New, high quality NFC enabled headphones and wireless speaker.

·         SmartTags NT3 – Create a unique experience for your tag and share with a friend via NFC.

·         Continually update the experience over time with the Bluetooth Music Receiver BM10 – stream music and audio from Xperia Z1 to your home Hi-Fi system

·         Miracast Wireless Display IM10 – Mirror your smartphone display on your HDTV or projector

Xperia1 key specifications

Sony’s “G Lens”: A lens with F2.0 and wide angle 27mm as well as 3x clear image zoom.
BIONZ for mobile: Image processing engine with the algorithm from Sony’s leading digital compact cameras. It ensures pictures have less noise, fast auto-focus as well as high stable images for video shooting, preventing shots from being blurred.

1/2.3-type Exmor RS for mobile CMOS image sensor with 20.7MP: high sensitivity sensor capturing huge amounts of detail for sharp, crisp images, even in low-light conditions.

Dust and water-resistant (IP55 & IP58), with acclaimed OmniBalance design featuring durable tempered glass and solid one-piece aluminium frame

Qualcomm Snapdragon™800 quad-core 2.2 Ghz processor, 3000 mAh battery, 4G LTE
Xperia Camera Applications such as Social live which broadcast to Facebook. More applications will be available to download from Sony Select.

Memory: RAM 2 GB, Flash memory up to 16 GB, Expansion slot microSD™ card, up to 64 GB.
Available in black, white and purple colour variants


Reader comments

Sony officially announces the Xperia Z1 at IFA 2013


20 MP camera is impressive. What processor and how much mAh? Waterproof is really impressive as well. Can't complain about 1080p screen either.

Posted via Android Central App

In terms of specs, Moto X ain't much to speak of. The G2 easily trumps Moto X spec wise. The Z1 is on par with the G2 but also has waterproofing. That gives it the edge. This is the age of Snapdragon 800. Anything less is just not on this level. But for my money, I wouldn't spend it anywhere else except of the new Nexus even if they are not on the same level spec wise.

Posted via Android Central App

Looks sweet. I really don't like glass backs though, like on my Nexus 4, they scratch and crack and more importantly they have no grip on most surfaces!

Posted via Android Central App

Excuse me for speculating but this looks alot like that Nexus that was leaked yesterday

Posted via Android Central App

It, in fact, looks nothing like it. The camera on the Nexus was massive with a completely different flash/lens set-up and location on the back of the phone. Texture of the back seems wrong. The LG logo on the leaked Nexus 5 is probably the biggest wrong of them all. Obviously we can't be sure until it's formally released.

You just picked technology over a girlfriend. You have gotten your man card revoked. Please turn in your card as you leave.

Posted via Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App

This looks like something my boss would send in an email, lol.

Posted from my phone, using your girlfriend's Internet, while you're at work.

LOL. Then again, what happens if he said this because his phone might be better looking than his gf? :p

Just look at the form factor but if it is I'm sure the Nexus version won't have a glass body

Posted via Android Central App

It would be funny for sure, but LG wouldn't be laughing all that much. The nexus may not sell all that well in the grand scheme of things, but it is still money in the bank for them

Posted via Android Central App

Ha, they should! I always like the UK interpretations of things better than us (boot, petrol, gear lever, etc.). :-)

Most likely T-Mobile but not till spring early summer 2014.

Posted via Android Central App

This or a new Nexus. Come to T-Mobile Z1 on paper you have everything I want in my next phone.

Posted via Android Central App

This. Not to mention, the Note 3, probably, won't be waterproof. The only downside (to me) to the Z Ultra is the lack of flash. Other than that, in MY opinion, the Note 3 doesn't hold a candle to the Z Ultra.

Posted from my phone, using your girlfriend's Internet, while you're at work.

WTF is with the huge bezels? LG got it right with the G2. This phone looks like a step backwards design-wise.

Thinking the same thing as well. And it just doesn't look that comfortable to hold with its big block shape and flat back...

Posted via Android Central App

Seriously? Snapdragon 800 3,000 mAh waterproof 1080p 5 inch phone doesn't do it for you? This is the best phone to date. Some people will never be happy.

Posted via Android Central App

Those people are probably more inclined to have something like the ZL, a non-waterproof phone that is significantly shorter(8cm shorter/2cm narrower than the Z)/narrower than the waterproof flagship.

I for one would prefer a shorter/narrower version in exchange for waterproof, a Z1L, because 144*74/5.67"*2.91" is just too large for my hand.

If they can just make phones coated in sapphire we will have reached the limit of where I would love to be.

2+ GHz, 3,000 mAh, Waterproof, 1080p, coupled with Sapphire coating and running the latest Android is what I would consider a truly elite phone. I can't wait for that day it is near!

Posted via Android Central App

Opinions are like aholes, but wtf is possibly left to be design? Would love to see this as a Nexus with some design changes (as they always do). Maybe next year. LG earned my Nexus money again.

Waterproofing is probably the reasoning for the thick Bezel. I would take that trade off.

Posted via Android Central App

I would rather have a drop proof phone than a water proof one. Do people really drop their phones in the toilet?

I spend a lot of time near a pool and on the lake. I've seen a few accidents over the last few years. To me it's not a feature I have to have but it's something I'd be welcome to having.

Posted via Android Central App

exactly, I have the ZL and this is a step backwards in design for sure.

In fact I was thinking these specs would have be the perfect update to the ZL

I like the z1 phone but as of right now the G2 is still getting my money unless the note 3 has a surprise for us.

Posted via Android Central App

Does anyone know if the Xperia Z ULTRA will be coming to a Canadian Carrier and when?

It's either ultra or Z1 for me

Looks really nice imo. Only thing is I like the purple with the black trim from Xperia Z compared to the purple with the silverish trim in the Z1.

"The Xperia Z1 is completely waterproof,"

I hate being "that guy" But, it's water resistant, not waterproof.

My bad, I apologize...they are calling it waterproof... Seems unlikely... but that would be really interesting.

Wireless charging????

Also, even if it is not released in the U.S., could one still purchase an overseas version and use it on either T-mobile or AT&T?

It will probably be available on their website like the current Z and ZL before any carrier gets it.

Guessing wireless charging with water resistant isn't a good combo. Someone likely will charge it wet and start a electrical fire or something.

Posted via Android Central App

This looks enticing. I'm really enjoying that more manufacturers are going with a water proof phone. Even if I don't go swimming with it, it is nice while I'm outside working or something and it begins raining I can use my phone without having to worry about water getting inside of it. Very good looking phone.

I can honestly say, now that Nokia will be destroyed by Microslowft, I'm getting this phone to replace my L920. Seems pretty awesome.

Was strongly considering replacing my One with the G2 but this is making me think again -_____-