If you haven't at least glanced at YouTube gadget aficionado JerryRigEverything (whose real name is Zack), you should close this tab and go do that. He puts new phones through excruciating damage tests for "entertainment purposes only" - it's the kind of thing that we're not really supposed to do in our standard reviews (unless the phone dares us to kill it). In a breakdown of the Xperia XZ, Sony's current premium flagship which retails for $700, Zack found a surprising amount of materials that were less than premium.
Startlingly, the side of the phone's housing, the top and bottom of the device, and a large strip on the rear were all made out of plastic, unlike competitive models from Google, Samsung, HTC, and LG. This cheaper build for the phone's frame and stress points led to it being easily bent in the dramatic "bend test," but it did recover more than a full-metal phone might, and didn't fail electronically. While the volume and camera buttons were metal, the SIM card tray and combined power button/fingerprint scanner were also plastic. After some hard scratches the scanner stopped working. (The US model doesn't offer fingerprint scanning at all, though it can be hacked.)
Zack did praise the upgraded camera module, which features tempered glass instead of the plastic lens cover of previous Xperia models, and the glass screen panel matches the 6-Moh hardness of most phones. He rates the Xperia XZ as "worth considering" in terms of durability, but based on pure materials for price, it seems like Sony is well behind other players in the smartphone market.
- JerryRigEverything YouTube