IFA 2015: Sony Unveils the Xperia Z5, Compact and Premium with World first 4K Display!

Sony unveils next-generation smartphone camera with Xperia™ Z5 and Xperia™ Z5 Compact, and the world’s first 4K¹ smartphone² Xperia™ Z5 Premium

The Sony Xperia Z5 and the Xperia Z5 Compact are now official. The new generation “mainstream” flagship and its pocket-friendlier brother were just announced at a press event two days before the IFA expo opens to the public.

The regular-sized Xperia Z5 comes with the familiar 5.2-inch diagonal established with the Z2, and the Z5 Compact retains the 4.6 inches of the last Z3 Compact. The Z5 has a FullHD panel with a 428ppi density, while the Compact sticks to 720p resolution, resulting in 323ppi. Both displays are IPS units with the TRILUMINOUS and X-reality technologies inside and undisclosed make chemical tempered glass on top.Xperia-Z5-Header

Sony Xperia Z5

The mighty Snapdragon 810 powers both smartphones with a dual quad-core CPU, ticking at up to 2GHz, and Adreno 430 GPU. You get 3GB of RAM on the vanilla model, but only 2GB on the Compact. Both models will have 32GB of built-in storage, though the Compact may ship with half than in certain markets. The microSD slot is universally available, though. The entire Xperia Z5 family will run on Android 5.1.1 upon launch.

Number one on the new features list is the 23MP camera. It uses a custom-made sensor, exclusive to Sony, housed behind a 24mm-equivalent f/2.0 lens. The sensor’s effective area is actually larger, as we’ll try to explain, and you’ll be able to shoot 23MP images in 4:3 aspect or 20MP in 16:9. The camera app has been thoroughly redesigned as well for a more contemporary look and improved usability.


The Xperia Z5 bears a strong resemblance to the previous model, but a few new design elements clearly set it apart. Chief among those is the reworked power button, now doubling as a fingerprint sensor. The now aluminum frame has an Xperia logo engraved on the side, while a frosted back panel replaces the glossy predecessor, aiming to put an end to smudgy backs and to achieve a more unified look between front and sides.

Measuring 146mm x 72mm x 7.3mm, the Z5 is identical to the Z3 in terms of dimensions and thus marginally thicker than the Z3+. Weighing in at 154g it’s heavier than either of the two older generations, but its battery is smaller, at 2,900mAh. Both have IP68 certification for the lineup’s signature dust and water resistance.

Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

SCR42-Z5The Xperia Z5 Compact shares the fingerprint sensor and the Xperia logo in the frame but looks a lot chunkier. It measures 127mm x 65mm x 8.9mm so it’s not really thin, it’s just that the Z3 Compact did a much better job at masking its waistline. The 138g of heft are justified here by the 2,700mAh cell capacity.

The Sony Xperia Z5 will be available in the more formal White and Graphite Black, but also Gold and Green, while the Z5 Compact spices things up with Yellow and Coral. The smartphones will be on store shelves globally starting in October, but pricing remains to be detailed.

Xperia Z5 Premium


Capturing and displaying true to live images has long been close to Sony’s heart and today they revitalized that passion. The Sony Xperia Z5 Premium is the first to reach the next benchmark in display smartphone technology – 4K resolution – and comes with a much-improved camera to match.

The 4K Triluminos display is an IPS panel has 3,840 x 2,160px resolution, that’s four times 1080p or just over 8MP. It puts 806ppi pixel density in the palm of your hand for crystal clarity of 4K footage from Netflix, YouTube or some that you’ve shot yourself.

You can do that with the brand new camera, the first major upgrade since the Z1. The Xperia Z5 Premium packs a new 1/2.3″ Exmor RS sensor with 23MP resolution (shared with the other Z5s). The sensor sits behind a Sony G Lens with an f/2.0 aperture and tech borrowed from Sony’s α line of lenses.

The camera captures 4K videos with improved Intelligent Active Mode and SteadyShot technology for smooth, sharp videos at day and at night. ISO for videos goes up to 3,200, for photos the maximum jumps to 12,800.

The Sony Xperia Z5 Premium has a stainless steel frame (unlike the other Z5s, which are made from aluminum). It’s painted in Black, Gold or the unique Chrome option (a mirror finish). The body is IP65/68 rated – dust-tight and waterproof with a cap-less USB port.

A new addition to the Z family is the fingerprint sensor on the redesigned Power key. Things naturally flow from waking the phone with the key to unlocking it with the sensor, which also supports the FIDO standard for online payment services.

The phone runs Sony-flavored Android 5.1, naturally, powered by a Snapdragon 810 chipset with 3GB of RAM. You get 32GB of storage out of the box and can add up to 200GB more with a microSD card if you need extra room for those 4K videos.

The Sony Xperia Z5 Premium will launch globally in November, pricing will be revealed around that time. It will come in single and dual-SIM versions, both of which support Cat. 6 LTE.


Samsung also announces ATIV Smart PC & EK-GC100 Galaxy Camera!

Samsung announces EK-GC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 4.8-inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity

Samsung announces EKGC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 48inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity handson video

During a visit to Samsung’s headquarters in Korea earlier this year, we had a chance to talk shop with company execs. The electronics maker’s existing mirrorless and point-and-shoot lineups were the primary topic of discussion, but we did catch wind of a Galaxy product possibly to come, from the camera division. A Galaxy camera? That could only mean Android, and a heavy heaping of touch and connectivity. At the time, reps admitted only that they were “considering” such a device, and declined to provide any hint as to design or functionality.

Nikon beat Samsung out the door with its Coolpix S800c — a 16-megapixel snapper powered by Android 2.3.3, but this latest version is an entirely different beast. The entire back of the camera is occupied by an edge-to-edge 4.8-inch 1,280 x 720-pixel (308 ppi) display. It looks like something you’d find on a cellphone, like, say, the Galaxy Note — having a touch-enabled viewfinder on a compact camera is certainly advantageous. There are still a few hardware buttons on board, including a flash release (there’s a pop-up strobe in the top right corner), a power button, zoom toggle and shutter release, but you’ll spend most of your time interacting with the Galaxy Camera through touch. With the Auto mode, you’ll have access to a touch-to-focus system while leaving the rest of the computing to the camera. Smart Pro Mode is Samsung’s version of intelligent auto, offering ideal settings for 10 different scenarios, such as the Waterfall Trace and Night Trace options, which slow down the shutter speed for daylight and evening shoots, respectively.


Samsung announces EKGC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 48inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity handson video

Despite the Galaxy’s rather large profile, Samsung opted for a standard 1/2.33-inch BSI CMOS sensor, capable of 16-megapixel snaps. Don’t expect top-of-the-line image quality, but the 21x, f/2.8-5.9, 23-480mm lens will let you get far closer to the action than any smartphone on the market today. This latest point-and-shoot falls within Samsung’s SMART lineup, which means there’s surely WiFi on board. There’s also 3G and 4G connectivity as well, though, delivered from the carrier of your choice through a micro-SIM that slides in beside the microSD card and 1,650 mAh battery, which Samsung reps say can provide up to seven hours of battery life while connected.

Samsung announces EKGC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 48inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity handson video

Naturally, there are plenty of options for sharing. Android 4.1 Jelly Bean’s on board, so you can add any of your favorite imaging apps from Google Play (yes, even Instagram — a future update will add zoom functionality, too). There are also plenty of native sharing and sorting options, including a device-wide search tool that lets you locate shots based on a face tag, location or time. Best Group Pose will automatically select the ideal portrait of you and your friends, while Share Shot lets you use WiFi Direct to send content to your buds with Galaxy cameras and smartphones in realtime. There’s also an Auto Cloud Backup feature, which provides redundancy by sending your photos wirelessly as you shoot — assuming you’re connected to WiFi or a wireless carrier.

Samsung announces EKGC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 48inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity handson video

We had a chance to shoot with the Galaxy Camera for a few minutes today. The camera we had was clearly an early prototype — we did experience focusing issues and a colleague’s device locked up during the demo — but considering that it’s not set to ship until October, Samsung has a bit of time left to work out the kinks. Otherwise the experience was quite positive; we found the camera to be very responsive and intuitive, especially if you’re already familiar with Android. Upon boot-up, you’re met with a typical Jelly Bean home screen, with a standard Camera shortcut, located front and center, launching the advanced interface. You can, of course, use the device as a data-only smartphone of sorts as well, surfing the web, responding to email and consuming media just as you would on any other Galaxy.

Samsung announces EKGC100 Galaxy Camera with Android Jelly Bean, massive 48inch display, 21x zoom, WiFi and 4G connectivity handson video

Without standard phone functionality, the Galaxy Camera won’t replace your smartphone — not to mention that the rather bulky form-factor would end up being quite a nuisance — but if you don’t make calls, this could theoretically be the only device in your (rather spacious) pocket. We can’t speak to image quality just yet, as we weren’t permitted to transmit samples, but based on the existing SMART line, it’s safe to expect perfectly acceptable, though not spectacular stills. The device is set to begin shipping in October, and will be sold through camera retailers as well as carrier outlets, though pricing has not yet been released.

Samsung ATIV Smart PC and Smart PC Pro

Samsung unveils ATIV Smart PC and Smart PC Pro with detachable keyboard dock, S Pen

Samsung didn’t leave its ATIV introductions to just an ARM tablet and a phone. We first saw them as theSeries 5 and Series 7 tablets, which will likely be their final US names; to recap, though, the newly branded ATIV Smart PC and ATIV Smart PC Pro both look to capture some of that Transformer-likeaura by mating an 11.6-inch tablet with a detachable keyboard dock for a laptop experience.

Some of Samsung’s own Galaxy Note vibe rubs off on them, too — both carry an S Pen and a bundled S Note app for some on-the-spot writing. They likewise share support for 3G and 4G as well as micro-HDMI and USB, but there’s a clear difference depending on what you buy. Going for the regular Smart PC loads in a modest Clover Trail-based Intel Atom processor and a 1,366 x 768 display, but offers a lengthy 13.5-hour battery life, 2GB of RAM, up to a 128GB flash drive, a rear 8-megapixel camera and a 2-megapixel front camera.

Slap that “Pro” moniker on the front and you have to drop to eight hours of battery life and a 5-megapixel rear camera, but you’ll get a much faster Core i5 processor, a 1080p display, 4GB of RAM and as much as a 256GB SSD. Unlike the ATIV Tab, we do know the Smart PCs will be available in the US on October 26th at $649 for a base Smart PC/Series 5, $749 for a bundle with the keyboard and $1,119 for a Smart PC Pro/Series 7 with a 128GB SSD built-in.

Samsung announces ATIV S and ATIV Tab, Windows Phone 8 device and Tablet!

Samsung announces ATIV S, a 48inch Windows Phone 8 device

Samsung took to the stage in Berlin to showcase its new product lineup, and one of the featured devices is the first confirmed Windows Phone 8 device. Dubbed the ATIV S, the new Microsoft-sanctioned smartphone offers a 4.8-inch screen with an HD Super AMOLED display, a 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm CPU, 8MP rear camera and 1.9MP front-facing cam. Additionally, it’s got a beefy 2,300mAh battery, 1GB RAM, Gorilla Glass 2 and will come in both 16 and 32GB flavors. At 8.7mm, it’s also reasonably thin. Its body is made of brushed aluminum and comes with a WP8-friendly MicroSD slot. We’ve got another pic of the ATIV S below, and we’ll have a hands-on to you as soon as possible.

Samsung announces ATIV S, a 48inch Windows Phone 8 device

Samsung introduces ATIV Tab: a 10.1-inch Windows RT tablet

Samsung introduces ATIV Tab a 101inch Windows RT tablet

Samsung’s busy cranking out its fall lineup here in Berlin, and among the new entries is the ATIV Tab, aWindows RT-packing cousin of the Galaxy Note 10.1. The new 10.1-inch slate isn’t quite as aggressive as its Android counterpart and centers on a 1,366 x 768 display, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, a 5MP rear camera paired with a 1.9MP front-facing cam, and ports for micro-HDMI as well as USB. Dimensionally, the tablet is as light and skinny as you’d hope: it weighs 20.1 ounces (570g) and measures a slim 8.9mm thick. The 32GB and 64GB storage options aren’t shockers given the extra space Windows and the bundled copy of Office 2013 Home and Student 2013 will demand, but there’s a treat for long-haul users in the battery — it’s been upgraded from the 7,000maH pack of the Note 10.1 to an ample 8,200mAh unit. Samsung hasn’t handed out launch details, but it’s safe to say that the ATIV Tab won’t arrive any sooner than October 26th.

Samsung Galaxy Note II unveiled !

Samsung Galaxy Note II handson video

While we can’t say it was a shock, Samsung’s latest superphone has arrived — and it’s got a new stylus. The Galaxy Note II pushes the screen frontier to 5.5 inches wide, with another HD Super AMOLED display, this time at 1,280 x 720. Despite that expansion the phone is a mere 9.4mm thick, while it now houses a larger capacity (faster charging) 3,100mAh battery and a quad-core Exynos processor clocked at 1.6GHz.

Samsung Galaxy Note II handson video

As the Galaxy Note was to the Galaxy S II, so the Note II takes some design riffs from theGalaxy S III, with the same rounded edges, glossy finish and extra software piled atop its Android base. There’s also Samsung’s reliable 8-megapixel camera sensor on the back, capable of 1080p video-recording.

The great news is that the Galaxy Note II will be launching on Jelly Bean — no laborious waiting for those over-the-air updates for Google’s very latest. Software additions are understandably heavily weighted towards the phablet’s S Pen advances. The stylus itself now has a rubber nib, which Samsung reckons will offer an experience closer to pen and paper.

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User can add “Quick Commands” to their stylus gestures, while “Air View” allows you to peruse galleries and folders by floating the stylus just above the screen. Samsung’s also added an Easy Clip ability to crop and share from anything beaming out from the Note II’s 16:9 screen. Stylus functionality has been gifted to the calendar (S Planner) and the native email app, while the S Pen itself will now notify your phone if it’s left behind. The device will launch in Titanium Grey and Marble White, arriving internationally before the end of the year.

Samsung Galaxy Note II handson video