The Sony Z5 currently reigns as the king of smartphone camera quality according to DxOMark. I've had the opportunity to use a review unit as my daily driver for the past week, and I have been pretty impressed with the image quality thus far.
One thing that I hadn't liked, at all, was that Sony was still using the same clunky camera app that debuted with the original Sony Z. Seriously, five generations of devices all using the same cumbersome UI?
That changes today. The Japanese phone manufacturer has begun the roll-out of the major camera app update that they previewed back at IFA. Read More
The first gen Android Wear devices are getting a little long in the tooth, but in the electronics world, with age comes a dramatic drop in price. The smartwatch I have worn daily for the past 9 months is the Sony Smartwatch 3, and I have to say, I don't really feel any need to replace it.
The watch has great battery life, WiFi, GPS, and while the transflective display isn't the prettiest, it sure is functional for outdoor use. The water resistance and silicone band keep me from worrying about damaging it while working in the hospital and MicroUSB charging makes it the easiest Android Wear device to top off when out of the house. Read More
If you don't know what PlayStation Vue is, don't worry, you're not alone. It's not a gaming service of any kind, it's an IPTV subscription that delivers select shows and networks to the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. It's a sort of hardware-exclusive take on SlingTV. Or at least it was, until Sony announced that the service was expanding to other streaming devices. Amazon's Fire TV and Fire TV Stick will be the first non-Sony hardware compatible with PlayStation Vue, not counting iPhone and iPad.
Apparently there are still no plans for core Android app, but the service will expand to the Chromecast (and presumably Android TV by way of its built-in Cast support) at some point in the future. Read More
MicroSD cards are nice. They take a tiny amount of internal memory and supplement it with however much space you need to store whatever you want. And those little plastic squares happen to go on sale all the time.
Today you can get Sony flash memory on Amazon for super cheap. Read More
Even budget phones are pretty good these days, but most of them suffer from an unfortunate lack of storage. 8GB seems to be the standard (with some going as low as 4GB), and that isn't helped by manufacturers' habit of including a ton of apps you might not need or want. Sony got some negative feedback for the Xperia M4 Aqua's 8GB on the base model, but it looks like they've taken it to heart: the latest update to the phone removes quite a few previously standard apps, freeing up some much-needed storage.
Xperia Blog did a pretty great breakdown on the phone's original storage situation, which left just 1.25GB of free space for users after Android 5.0 and all the included apps. Read More
Few Android OEMs take their updates as seriously and as extensively as Sony does, and Marshmallow is no exception. Ever since the source code for Android 6.0.0 was released by Google, the company revealed which devices in its portfolio will get it (hint: they go as far back as the Xperia Z2), released AOSP binaries for a slew of devices including its new Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact, and announced concept Marshmallow builds for the Z3 and Z3 Compact that are open for 10,000 testers. Now these builds are starting to roll to users who signed up for them and you have more opportunities to try them out if you own a compatible smartphone. Read More
You could pick up a cheap Nexus Player or an NVIDIA SHIELD if you just want Android TV in your life, but Sony also makes some TV with the software built in, so why not? If you need a new TV anyway, you can't go wrong. One of Sony's Android TVs is available through Dell, and you'll get a whopping $350 gift card when ordering. Read More
Sony's non-presence in the US smartphone market only seems to be accelerating of late, with the company having closed all of its retail stores in the country (apart from the one on Madison Avenue in NYC), shut down its online shop (it redirects all listings to 3rd party retailers), and cancelled its only known upcoming device. This, alongside increasingly dismal sales performance for Xperia phones even outside America, tends to paint a not-nice picture of the company's smartphone division.
But Sony Pictures lives on, and with it, the blockbuster Daniel Craig Bond franchise. The upcoming 007 film Spectre will, of course, feature a lot of Sony product placement, including the generally well-liked Xperia Z5... Read More
Sony's open device project was launched to allow developers to run AOSP Android builds on many of Sony's devices. The company has been keeping up the software support for this program, and has even added new devices frequently. Now, Sony's latest flagships are joining the open initiative. You can grab the Marshmallow software binaries for the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact right now. Read More
Sony began tinkering with a cleaner build of Android 5.1 earlier this year with the help of a few hundred beta testers in Sweden. The so-called Sony Concept for Android program is moving forward today with an expansion to more markets and a bump up to Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Slots are limited (increased from last time), and it's not available in all regions. For once, it's the US that's getting left out. Read More