SUMMARYThe Sony Xperia Z3 Compact is definitely cheaper, it is also more convenient for most of us.
It is quite common these days for top manufacturers to launch a smaller version of their flagship phones. The latest in this line is the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact, the more affordable, lighter, smaller version of the new Sony Xperia Z3. I first spotted the phone in the crowded Sony stall at IFA. And somehow this phone and how it felt in the hand stayed with me more than the larger flagship. I have already reviewed the Xperia Z3 and a full review of the compact might be futile as Sony has kept the specs more or less the same.
Specs: 4.6-inch (720×1280 pixels) HD TRILUMINOS display | Snapdragon 2.5 GHz Qualcomm Quad-core processor with 2GB RAM | 16 GB storage with 128 GB external | 20.7MP rear camera, 2.1MP front | 3G, Bluetooth 4.0, DLNA, NFC, GLONASS | Nano sim| Rs 44,990
What is different?
The Z3 Compact is as the name suggests smaller than the Z3. So it has a 4.6-inch screen, compared to the 5.2 inches on the Z3. Plus, this screen is not Full HD and has a 720p resolution. The phone also has 2GB RAM, lesser than the flagship. But that is about it. It seems all these differences were good enough for Sony to be able to cut the price by Rs 7,000.
Design: The Z3 Compact looks just like the Z3, though a bit smaller. The other significant change is the see through plastic band on the edges. The phone is also much lighter at 129 grams. It is easier to hold and in a way suggests that keeping the size a bit under 5 inches has its own advantages. It is also water and dustproof with all ports hidden behind flaps. I had to spend some minutes finding the SIM slot as that flap was not marked.
Display: The stunning display of the Z3 has been recreated to an extent on the Compact. Though it is just HD compared to the 1080p screen on the larger phone, you will not be able to differentiate if you hold both phones together.
Performance: Both phones have the same specs, though the Compact has lesser RAM. But you cannot make out this difference when you are using the phone. It was really up to whatever I tried to do with it. It also stayed cool when I used it to shoot 4K video. No lag, no hesitation. This phones works like a beauty.
Software: The user interface is identical to the Z3 and you will have no issues with it. Sony, it trying to do an Apple by keeping the feel same across all its devices. However, I have to confess that it is much easier typing on the Z3 as the keyboard here is a bit small for me.
Camera: If the camera was the highlight of the Z3, then this is a notch better as it is easier to handle a 4.6-inch camera than a 5.2-inch one. I used the camera to extensively cover an Indian Express event in Mumbai and results were rock solid. In fact, I was shooting most of the event in 4K video and clicking photos right there on the video screen. This multi-tasking did not even evoke a froan from the phone. That was really impressive. This is among the best smartphone cameras you can buy, especially the video bit.
Storage: The phone comes with 16GB internal memory out of which about 11GB is free. Users get to use about 9GB of this. And it is the same for the Z3.
Battery: This is the pain point of most smartphones these days and this seems to be where Sony has invested quite a bit of time. This phone easily lasts over 24 hours, provided you haven’t been using the 4K video recording much.
Verdict: If you don’t want to spend as much as the Sony Xperia Z3, then this is a great option for you. It is cheaper and in some aspects, especially the size, a better phone for many users. For those looking a premium phone, this offer a good option.