IFA is well under way in Berlin, and Sony is the first manufacturer to let loose with a volley of hardware clamoring for your bleeding edge dollars. The Xperia Z1 (nee "Honami"), the sequel to last year's flagship Xperia Z, was just revealed in Sony's press conference. It's a modest bump to most hardware with a massive, massive focus on the camera. As leaked in multiple reports, the Z1 sports a 20.7 megapixel rear camera, soundly smashing current-generation Android competitors.


Sony isn't just competing in pure megapixels, either. The CMOS camera sensor is 1/2.3" large sitting behind Sony's "G" lens, which uses a 27mm wide-angle glass and F2.0 aperture. In non-tech speak, that means it's fast and well-equipped for low-light shooting. Sony is chirping up its "BIONZ" image processor, not to mention a suite of software features including visual search, augmented reality, and various social add-ons. The Social One software allows for live video streaming to Facebook.

The rest of the hardware is nothing to sneeze at. The screen is a 5" 1080p LCD which seems to be par for the course for current high-end smartphones (though Sony is hyping its "Triluminous" technology). But underneath you get the potent combination of a Snapdragon 800 processor (2.2Ghz quad-core), Adreno 330 GPU, and 2GB of RAM. Storage is a bit limited at 16GB, but at least you get a MicroSD card slot to play with. The non-removable battery is a respectable 3000mAh. Software is Android 4.2.2 with Sony's added skin and apps.


It's all wrapped in a body that looks more than a little bit like the Xperia Z, thanks to a glass back and metal frame. It gets the same relative resistance to water and dust as the previous phone, but strangely, Sony has actually made it a tiny bit thicker at 8.4mm, probably to help fit in a larger battery and all that camera tech.

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The Xperia Z1 will go on sale worldwide later this month in black, white, and purple colors. Sony is keeping mum about carrier availability and pricing. Photos and hands-on will be coming soon.

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