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Sony Xperia 10 Smartphone Review

Sony Xperia 10 Review - We review Sony's latest smartphone offering a 21:9 aspect ratio and 13 megapixel / 5 megapixel dual camera.


|  Sony Xperia 10 in Camera Phones
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Quick Verdict

The Sony Xperia 10 is a phone which seems a bit lost - its screen ratio is designed for the ability to watch movies, but it makes the taking and viewing of images a strange experience. Colours are good, but capturing images in a more accepted format such as 16:9 leads to the longer screen becoming surplus. Sony have got rid of the dedicated shutter button, and manual mode doesn't give you much control over the settings - turning the others to auto when you make one a certain value.

If you want a point and shoot phone then the Xperia 10 offers a good macro capability and decent bokeh portrait - but some images lack the small details that matter. 

+ Pros

  • Punchy colours in good light
  • Easy to navigate camera app
  • Slim shape makes it easy to hold and use

- Cons

  • Limited manual mode
  • No dedicated shutter button
  • Dated design
  • Poor detail/stitching in images
 

 


 

The Sony Xperia 10 has an ultra-wide display, with a 21:9 screen ratio that's designed to fit your hand. It offers a 13 megapixel + 5-megapixel dual camera to the rear and an 8-megapixel selfie camera. It's available from £299, making it affordable, with a 64GB internal memory and 3GB of RAM. You can get it in frosted navy, black, white or pink. Here, we take a look at how it performs.  

 

Sony Xperia 10 Features

On first glance, the Sony Xperia 10 appears really long and slim compared to other smartphones, offering a 6-inch 21:9 wide display with Full HD+ capability. It has kept the tell-tale blocky design of previous Sony smartphones, albeit offering slightly curved sides and smoother corners. Sony say the longer screen offers immersive movie watching as well as allowing you to see more and easily multi-task when using the phone. 

In an era where many smartphone manufacturers are maximising screen space and offering hole-punch front cameras and in-screen fingerprint recognition technology, Sony seem to be keeping to a tried and tested design. There's a thick bezel at the top, housing a speaker and rear camera. A 2mm bezel runs around the entirety of the screen, which is made from Corning Gorilla Glass 5 for durability. 

There's still a headphone jack on the top, and USB-C charging port along with 2x speakers at either side on the bottom. High-resolution audio is included, with DSEE HX. LDAC streaming for great sound quality. Smart amplifier technology is used to give richer, louder sound with enhanced bass. 

On the left-hand side there is a slot for the SIM card and a microSD card, and on the right-hand side you'll find the power button, slim fingerprint sensor and volume buttons. Sony seem to have gotten rid of the dedicated camera shutter button found on older models, perhaps due to the fact that people are now so used to pressing the screen to take an image. 


 

On the back is an LED flash, underneath which is the dual camera system. The 13-megapixel camera has a relatively small 1/3.0 sensor having a pixel pitch 1.12um. It features a 76.4 degree f/2 wide-angle lens. The 5-megapixel lens offer a 1/4.0 sensor and 1.4um pixel pitch. It offers an 87.9 angle of view and a max aperture of f/2.4.  

The rear camera is capable of a background bokeh effect, HDR capture, and also had Hybrid Autofocus. A low light photo mode is also available offering ISO 12800. the camera is capable of 4K video recording with SteadyShot technology, as well as 120fps slow-motion movie recording. 

The front-facing camera is an 8-megapixel offering with a 1/4.0 sensor and 1.12um pixel pitch. It's an 84-degree wide-angle lens with f/2 max aperture. HDR, SteadyShot, portrait selfie effects and display flash (using the screen to shed light on the capture) are available. 

The Sony Xperia 10 offers a 21:9 screen ratio allowing you to see more while scrolling and view movies in their intended cinematic ratio.

The phone offers Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC, and Google Cast connectivity. The battery is a 2870 mAh capacity which lower than some phones of a similar price however there is Xperia Adaptive Charging, Battery Care and smart stamina modes available to help the battery last longer. 

 

Key Features

  • 13mp f/2.0 standard wide camera, 5mp f/2.4 bokeh camera
  • 8mp f/2.0 front selfie camera
  • 21:9 6-inch screen with Full HD+ and Corning GorillaGlass 5
  • 4K video recording 
  • Bokeh effect 
  • HDR ability
  • Low light photo mode with ISO12800 capability
  • Audio jack
  • USB-C charging 

 

Sony Xperia 10 Handling


 

The camera app in auto mode offers flash off/on/auto/red eye reduction, timers of 10 sec or 3 sec, screen ratios of 4:3, 16:9, 1:1 or 21:9, and hue and saturation controls. It's worth noting that only the 4:3 ratio gives you the full 13-megapixel image, with the 1:1 and 16:9 ratios falling down to 10 megapixels and the 21:9 ratio offering just 8 megapixel captures. 

Portrait selfie, Bokeh, slow motion, manual, creative effect and panorama modes can also be chosen. Manual mode offers you control of focus, shutter speed, ISO, EV and white balance. 

The camera app is easy to navigate and a simple swipe to the left will put the app into video mode. 

In manual mode changing shutter speed or ISO setting sets the other back to auto - meaning you can't actually set a custom exposure - it's basically like using a shutter priority or ISO priority mode. 

Portrait selfie mode lets you adjust the strength of these effects using a slider: bokeh background, soften the skin, brighten the skin, enlarge the eyes and slim down the face. This makes for a surreal experience, as you can make yourself look quite alien-like to be frank.  

Using the app is quite linear, with a back arrow appearing whenever you're in a camera mode to take you back to the auto mode. A 'mode' button is in the bottom left corner to let you choose any mode you need from auto mode. One bugbear was the orientation of the symbols when the phone was turned on its side to capture an image - these don't rotate both ways so if you're left-handed everything will be left upside down while you're using it in landscape mode. 


 

                                   

      

   

AnTuTu gives the Xperia 10 a score of 86930, which is slow compared to the competition. Geekbench gives a multi-core score of 3811, making the Xperia 10's performance in-line with other similar budget smartphones. 


Battery life - The battery is rated at 2870mAh, which is quite low compared to other smartphones at a similar price - the Huawei P30 Lite, for example has a 3340mAh battery. It's worth noting that Sony phones tend to have good battery management, helping the power go further. 

However, if you're going to be away from a power source, we'd recommend getting yourself a portable power bank just in case.  

 


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