Sony Xperia ZL first impression

Sony Xperia ZL first impression

Along with the glass-laden Xperia Z, its shorter counterpart – the Sony Xperia ZL also made its first APAC debut during the recently concluded launch in Singapore. Let’s take a closer look at the Japanese company’s other 5-inch offering after the break.

As mentioned in our previous post, the Xperia ZL boasts a similar configuration as its flagship sibling. The significant difference between the two 5-inchers lies in the design and make which led to the ZL not having the water and dust resistant features of the Xperia Z.

Sony Xperia ZL

Though both the Z and the ZL has 5-inch display, the latter has a more compact frame which makes the screen look slightly smaller when placed beside the former. However, in order to fit the same screen size in a shorter profile, the ZL sacrificed a few millimeters of thickness and heft which measures 9.8mm and 151g respectively (the Xperia Z is only 7.9mm thick and weighs 146g).

This added weight and thickness isn’t as bad as you think. In fact, the phone felt more natural when held and the extra heft gives a more reassuring feel to the device. Throw the matte back cover in to the equation and you got yourself a well-built smartphone that provides a very nice grip.

Xperia ZL

Unlike the Z, the Xperia ZL only has one tempered glass with shatter-proof film which guards its display from being scratched. In exchange for the glass at the back, Sony outfitted the ZL with a matte plastic with a flap towards the bottom which hides the Micro-SIM and Micro-SD slots.


The button layout is also slightly different as opposed to the Xperia Z. The volume rocker is located above the power button with the Micro-USB port on the other side. There’s also a physical shutter button just below the power button which is not present on the Xperia Z.

Xperia ZL philippines

Although both handsets sport the same pair of snappers, the placement of the camera is different. The main camera of the Xperia ZL is placed in the top middle portion while the front-facing one is oddly placed at the bottom of the 5-inch screen.

Here’s a short hand’s on video of the Sony Xperia ZL:

In essence, the Sony Xperia ZL is just a compact and non-IP55/IP57 version of the company’s flagship handset. It comes with all of the desirable traits of the Xperia Z minus the thin and stylish form factor. This should be perfect for consumers who don’t mind not having the additional tempered glass at the back and water/dust resistant feature of the Xperia Z. And if priced accordingly, the Xperia ZL should give its competition a run for its money.

Speaking of pricing, Sony is yet to formally announce the price of their two new smartphones, although they did mention their plans of releasing the Z and the ZL on the latter portion of this quarter. We can probably expect these handsets to be launched locally around April or May.

Sony Xperia ZL specs:
5-inch Full HD display (1920×1080), @441ppi
Sony Mobile Bravia Engine II
Qualcomm MDM9215M Snapdragon S4 Krait 1.5GHz quad-core
Adreno 320
16GB internal storage
Expandable up to 64GB via Micro-SD card
DC-HSDPA 42Mbps, LTE 100Mbps
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, dual-band
Bluetooth 4.0
GPS w/ aGPS support, GLONASS
2370mAh battery
Android Jelly bean (4.1.2)
Dimension: 131.6 x 69.3 x 9.8 mm
Weight: 151g

This article was written by Ronnie Bulaong, a special features contributor and correspondent for YugaTech. Follow him on Twitter @turonbulaong.

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5 Responses

  1. Yahweh says:

    No mention/comparison on how this phone is actually smaller than the HTC One X and the Samsung Galaxy S3? The Xperia ZL is barely bigger than the Galaxy S2 despite a 5 inch screen.

  2. ZizZling Xperia says:

    Drooling for the compactness and awesomeness ng ZL.. I wish glass back rin sana ang ZL para super elegante rin dating nya. :D

  3. meh says:

    Local sony stores i have been to in the philippines don’t even have the Xperia T or TX, so i have no faith that this will be here before 2014

    • La+ says:

      Except that Sony themselves announce the release of Z and ZL in southeast asia (PH included)in Q1. On the other hand Sony didn’t announce the release of T and TX on some parts of Southeast asia (unfortunately, PH included).

  4. miongb says:

    sony should release these at the latest feb, @ a not-so-high price point. wag nila hintayin na dumating s4.

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