I was using the Sony Xperia V when Sony offered me the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact as an upgrade. I really enjoyed using the Xperia V but after a year of using a device as your daily driver, it is always exciting to switch on over to a new device. A new device brings change with a new set of features to play with. Change is always good!
The Z1 Compact is similar to the Xperia V in size but under the hood is another story. The Z1 Compact is powered by a Quad-core 2.2 GHz processor with 2 GBs of ram. The device is quick and smooth to use and apps load quickly. The Xperia Z1 Compact comes loaded with Android Jelly Bean 4.3 and is upgradable to Android KitKat 4.4.4. In the near future, you will be able to upgrade to the yet released Android L.
The Z1 Compact features a 4.3 inches IPS LCD capacitive touch screen display which is vibrant. Thanks to the Triluminos display and X-Reality Engine, watching videos, looking at photos or even playing games looks crystal clear and just like it should. The Z1 Compact has a scratch resistant screen yet it does come with an “anti-shatter film” already on the device. The Sony branding is embedded into this ASF so if it is removed, you will lose the Sony branding. It is important to note that the ASF does scratch easily so I highly suggest that you place a standard screen protector on top of the ASF so that you don’t scratch it.
Much like the Sony Xperia V and other phones in the Xperia range, the Xperia Z1 Compact is IP58 certified – dust proof and water resistant over 1 meter and 30 minutes. I have made Vines with the Z1 Compact in water, videos of the Z1 Compact in the pool and also just cleaned the phone under the tap and there was no damage what so ever. I know there are those of you who are sceptic and I understand that you may not want to immerse your precious device in water. But, as long as all the ports on the phone are closed, you have nothing to worry about.
Like most phones today the Z1 Compact supports a microSD up to 64GB and with 16GB internal memory, you are good to go!
For connectivity you have the usual such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, LTE and also NFC which is useful for quickly connecting to devices such as the Sony SmartBand.
I am big into my cameras and love taking photos. The Xperia V has a 13MP camera and I was really happy with it. So when I started using the 20.7MP camera on the Xperia Z1 Compact, you can imagine my reaction. The 20.7MP camera captures 5248 х 3936 pixels which is perfect if you don’t feel like lugging around a DSLR. The camera app comes with some smart features such as Augmented Reality mode which adds a layer over the top of the image, whether it be Butterflies, disco or even dinosaurs. For those of you that want to make their photos stand out there is the Creative effect mode which provides artistic effects for photos as well as videos. For those selfie lovers, there is a 2MP camera to help with your addiction.
On the video side of things the Z1 Compact produces 1080p@30fps videos. I have already made many videos and the quality is amazing that you would think I am using a professional video camera.
With the right settings, the Non-removable Li-Ion 2300 mAh battery can give about two days usage. I normally turn off all unnecessary features but as I have been using some accessories, I have had to turn some of them on such as Bluetooth. There will be a bit of a loss in usage time but it is not noticeable and I can still get a lot of use out of the phone before another charge is needed. But if I am in need of some juice, I do have the Sony Power Bank that can quickly charge the device.
I really love the feel of the Z1 Compact in my hand. The Xperia V had a much cheaper feel to it, even though it wasn’t a low entry device. The Z1 Compact has an aluminium frame and glass on front and the back. With sleek lines on the frame and rounded edges, this is one device that I don’t mind having in my hand.
There are three ports on the left side of the phone. You have the micro USB, memory card and a sim card port. On the right side of the phone there is the power button, volume rocker and a dedicated camera key, which has to be used under water!
I said it at the launch and I will say it again. Compact does not mean mini. The Z1 Compact features the same specs as its big brother, the Z1 but in a smaller build. The only difference between the two is the battery.
Play music underwater? Cool
I am really happy with the Z1 Compact so far. From its build quality to its camera, it is a device that I enjoy using on a daily basis. I love that I can get it dirty and then pour water over it to clean it up. Sony have once again produced a device that meets all my standards. Stay tuned to what Sony has to offer as there are some new devices coming out shortly like the Z3 Compact which I will hear about at the Sony IFA event in Johannesburg.