The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua, which made its official debut back in March, is one of the latest mid-range smartphones from Sony. The combination of its Z3-inspired looks, respectable specification, and waterproof body seems too good to be true for its SRP of under Php14,490.
The Xperia M4 Aqua is one of the more better-looking smartphone in its price range. Its sleek, well-crafted body is sandwiched in between two glasses, similar to the more recent Xperia smartphones that came before it.
The front of the device is mostly all-screen with just enough room at the top to house the secondary camera, earpiece, ambient light sensor and an LED notification light. Since the handset makes use of on-screen buttons for Android navigation, the bottom section of the screen is mostly barren with only the mouthpiece occupying that area.
Of all the sides of the Xperia M4 Aqua, the right side is the busiest one, housing both the volume rockers and power button, as well as a dedicated camera button down at the bottom and a Nano-SIM card slot at the top tucked underneath a plastic flap.
The placement of these physical keys are ideal, particularly the power and volume rockers, and are easily accessible by the thumb for right-hand users. However, there are a few small things that irked us about these buttons that ruined what would otherwise be a seamless implementation.
Firstly, there’s no clear distinction between the Volume Up and Volume Down keys. Next, these keys are a little hard to press and require users to bottom the button down to register the action. And lastly, each of these physical buttons produces a louder-than-usual click-y sound when pressed, something that we don’t often see on other smartphones.
These things that we pointed out aren’t exactly huge design flaws per se, and something that most users won’t notice and probably won’t give a damn if they did.
Moving on to the other external components, the audio jack is located at the top-left corner of the Xperia M4 Aqua, near the Micro-USB port and Micro-SD card slot that are left near the edge of the handset’s left flank.
Down at the bottom you’ll find a lone loudspeaker placed near the bottom-right corner of the device. Flip the device on its back and you’ll find a familiar sight comprising of rear camera, which has a 13-megapixel resolution, its accompanying LED flash unit.
Sony Xperia M4 Aqua specs:
5-inch IPS HD display, 1280 x 720 @294ppi
64-bit 1.5Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 octa-core CPU
Adreno 405 GPU
Expandable 8GB internal storage
Supports up to 32GB microSD
13 megapixel AF rear camera w/ flash
5 megapixel front camera
4G LTE (select markets), 3G HSPA+
GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
Android 5.0 Lollipop
IP65 / IP68-certified
145.5 x 72.6 x 7.3 mm
White, Black, Red
In a nutshell, the Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is a slightly miniaturized version of the Xperia Z3 sans the contact point on the left side for docking. So if you like Sony’s former flagship’s design, you’ll definitely love what the company has down with this mid-range smartphone.
With the exception of some minor issues we have with its physical buttons, we are all praises for the Sony Xperia M4 Aqua’s design. Its svelte and lightweight form factor feels very good in the hands and its premium build is something you don’t typically see on a sub-Php15K smartphone.
If you’re buying a smartphone based on its design alone, then the Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is certainly a keeper. However, if you’d like to know if this handset is more than just a pretty-looking device, then check out our full review coming out later this week.