Today Sony launched the successor to this year’s not-so-old XZ2 which was released only 6 months ago at MWC. The new XZ3 is an iterative design over the XZ2, however it brings an extremely important industry development by virtue of being the first smartphone sporting a new Sony OLED display.

To date Samsung and LG were the only manufacturers able to manufacture and produce OLED displays in any meaningful quantities and quality- with Samsung being the undisputed market leader in the area.

Sony Xperia XZ3 & XZ2
  XZ2 XZ3
SoC Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
4x Kryo 385 Performance @ 2.8GHz
4x Kryo 385 Efficiency @ 1.77GHz
Adreno 630
Display 5.7" 2160x1080 (18:9)
6.0" 2880x1440 (18:9)
Dimensions 153 x 72 x 11.1 mm
198 grams
158 x 73 x 9.9 mm
193 grams
+ microSD
Battery 3180 mAh
3330 mAh
Front Camera 5MP 1/5" Exmor RS,
f/2.2, 23mm wide angle
13MP 1/3.06" Exmor RS
f/2.2, 23mm wide angle
Primary Rear Camera 19MP 1/2.3" Exmor RS Tri-stack sensor 1.22µm pixels
f/2.0 25mm
1080p960 Super-slow mo
Modem Snapdragon X20 LTE (Snapdragon Integrated)
2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Category 15/13)
DL 1200 Mbps (5x20MHz CA, 256-QAM),
 UL 150 Mbps (
2x20MHz CA, 64-QAM)
SIM Size NanoSIM
Dual SIM
Dual SIM
Wireless 802.11a/b/g/n/ac 2x2 MU-MIMO, BT 5.0 LE,
NFC, GPS/Glonass/Galileo/BDS
Connectivity USB Type-C 3.1, no 3.5mm jack
Features Fingerprint sensor, fast charging (Adaptive Fast Charge, USB-PD),
wireless charging (WPC & PMA),
IP65-IP68 water resistance
Launch OS Android 8.0 Android 9.0

The XZ3 is largely based on the internals of the XZ3, sporting the same Snapdragon 845 chipset, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of UFS2.1 storage. The XZ3 also has the same main rear camera module with a 19MP Sony sensor module with 1.22µm pixel pitches and a 25mm equivalent f/2.0 aperture lens.

Where the XZ3 differs is in the new upgraded front-camera unit which is now upgraded from 5MP to up to 13MP with a new much larger sensor module, and a slight increase in the battery capacity from 3180mAh to 3330mAh.


Obviously the defining feature of the new XZ3 is the new OLED display. Here Sony greatly increases the resolution from 2160 x 1080 to 2280 x 1440 – retaining the same 18:9 aspect ratio while increasing the display diagonal from 5.7” to 6”. Indeed because the display aspect ratio is the same, this means that the new phone’s screen is effectively bigger, yet Sony manages to do this while only increasing the width of the phone by 1mm, and otherwise achieving the larger screen size by reducing the bezels on all sides.

The new screen features curves edges, and Sony now includes a new edge-swipe functionality menu much like what you’d see in Samsung’s products.

We haven’t had opportunity to see Sony’s OLED in person yet, but the quality of the new display will be a make-or-break moment for the device as in the past we’ve seen LG stumble in their first generation OLED devices – hopefully Sony has managed to ship a high quality display in the XZ3. The new display continues to support HDR capability.

The back of the XZ3 features the same similar design as the XZ2, meaning we find a quite low positioned camera with a centred fingerprint scanner in the middle of the phone. Unfortunately the XZ3 also comes with some of the negative features of the XZ2, among which is the lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack. Software wise, the XZ3 will ship with Android 9.0 out of the box, making this one of the first Android Pie devices on the market.

The XZ3 comes in black, white silver, forest green and bureaux red colour option and will be available for USD $899 or £699 and goes on sale in October.

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  • Lord of the Bored - Thursday, August 30, 2018 - link

    Looks like a piece of glass with a picture under it to me. It's been a while since phones actually had distinctively different appearances.
  • mooninite - Friday, August 31, 2018 - link

    All phones look the same. Just like the iPhone. No one dares to create a unique design anymore. If it doesn't look like an iPhone executives think the phone would not sell.
  • Lord of the Bored - Friday, August 31, 2018 - link

    The war on bezels(and previous war on buttons) makes it hard to look like anything at all from the front, no matter how much you want to have a unique design. Also makes these pocket Pcs hard to hold without touching the touchscreen, but... whatever, who cares as long as it looks cool!
  • V900 - Thursday, September 13, 2018 - link

    The war on bezels is absolutely idiotic.

    Hopefully that trend will die a sudden an well deserved death soon.

    I want the bezel back! And so will most people after using them for a whole, I suspect.
  • Inteli - Thursday, August 30, 2018 - link

    I think the resolution is supposed to be 2880x1440, not 2280x1440.

    Any word on the subpixel arrangement, or whether this is WOLED or RGBOLED? My last phone with an OLED display was a Galaxy Note 3, and unless serious progress has been made with the life span of the blue subpixel, I'd be wary of buying another RGBOLED phone. The white point on my Note 3 shifted dramatically between when it was new and when I replaced it.
  • Lolimaster - Friday, August 31, 2018 - link

    You should about them being pentil, the only good mobile AMOLED is the ones on galaxy tab tablets S3 and the S4 uses full RGB subpixels.
  • N Zaljov - Thursday, August 30, 2018 - link

    Small typo in the specs: I think the resolution is supposed to be 2880x1440 in order to get to the prospected 18:9 (or 2:1) display ratio.

    The display panel bears striking similarity to the LG P-OLED panel used in the Pixel 2 XL & LG V30, which leds me to believe that Sony might've teamed up with LG and fine-tuned LG's existing panel (although in a newer revision) to fulfill Sony's requirements for the screen.
  • iwod - Thursday, August 30, 2018 - link

    If that was the case it would still be LG OLED, and not Sony OLED. Since they specifically mention their name in it, it must have mean something.
  • darkswordsman17 - Thursday, August 30, 2018 - link

    I don't think Sony produces any of their own (for phone sized panels, I think it was basically just Samsung for years, then LG tried, gave up, and then finally went back in after Apple paid them a lot to develop better OLED panels so that they wouldn't be stuck to Samsung when they wanted to switch; and then LG's wasn't ready so they ended up using Samsung anyway for the iPhone X). They have a deal to get LG OLED panels for TVs, so I'd guess its a similar situation here, its an LG panel which Sony claims they've tweaked somehow.
  • Lolimaster - Friday, August 31, 2018 - link

    It's a JDI OLED.

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