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xperia

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Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium falls to $650 ($250 off) at Amazon, B&H, and Focus Camera

The Xperia XZ2 Premium debuted with an MSRP of $1,000. Predictably, that hasn't worked out well for Sony. Luckily, as any phone tends to do after some time, the price has dropped to a much more palatable $649.99, which is $350 less than the launch price and $250 under current MSRP, from Amazon, B&H, and Focus Camera.

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Sony's budget Xperia L3 is the latest to leak ahead of MWC unveiling

We know a fair bit about Sony's plans for Mobile World Congress by now, including the launch of a new flagship in the shape of the Xperia XZ4 (which may end up being renamed for the 10th anniversary of the Xperia brand) and two mid-range phones. We've also been hearing about another budget model called the Xperia L3, which we're now seeing official renders for.

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Sony Xperia XZ3 is down even further to $730 ($170 off)

Sony's phones have been on sale all over the place lately. Last week, we reported that there were price drops on a number of Xperia devices at several retailers. At the time, the premium Xperia XZ3 was $100 off its $900 MSRP. Now, it's fallen even further at B&H, currently going for $730.

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Sony Xperia XZ2 is $530 ($170 off), XA2 Ultra $280 ($120 off), XZ3 $850 ($50 off) at B&H and other retailers

Pricing aside, Sony phones are generally well-liked. That means that an event such as Black Friday could be the perfect time to pick one up. Currently, we're seeing some decent sales on the last-gen Xperia XZ2 and Xperia XA2 Ultra, with a $50 discount on the Xperia XZ3 as well, from multiple retailers.

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[Update: XZ2 Compact too] Sony has added the Xperia XZ2 and XZ3 to its Open Devices program

For developers wishing to tinker with Sony phones, the Open Devices program is a welcome official point of entry. The Japanese company adds most of its high-profile Android handsets to the list of supported devices after a little while, and the Xperia XZ2 and XZ3 are the latest to join the ranks.

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[Update: XZ2 Premium] Sony Xperia XZ Premium, XZ1, and XZ1 Compact receive Android 9 Pie update

Back in August, Sony announced that the XZ2 family, XZ1 family, and XZ Premium would be receiving their Android 9 Pie updates in November. Last month, the XZ2 and XZ2 Compact received their OTAs ahead of schedule. Now, the XZ Premium, XZ1, and XZ1 Compact are getting theirs.

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Sony is killing off Xperia Themes on the XZ3 — and probably more phones in the future

Depending on your perspective, it's either a smart move or extremely unfortunate that Sony is reducing the amount of proprietary software it puts on its phones. But whether you love Sony's mobile skin or you're more of a stock Android fan, the stripping down continues with the loss of Xperia Themes on the Xperia XZ3 devices due to "low usage." 

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Sony Xperia XZ3 review: After years of mediocrity, Sony is finally ready to compete

For several years now, Sony fans and critics have been calling for the Japanese company to move away from its boxy, dated hardware design language and join its rivals in releasing a modern Android smartphone. When the Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact arrived at MWC 2018 in February, we hailed them as a small step in the right direction. Curved glass and greatly reduced bezels around an 18:9 screen combined with high-end internals and a relatively stock treatment of Android — a recipe that was also followed for the overpriced XZ2 Premium that came in the summer.

It’s somewhat surprising that we’re talking about another flagship Sony phone so soon, yet the Xperia XZ3 stole the show at IFA 2018 and goes on sale at the beginning of October, just six months after the XZ2 was released and three months after the XZ2 Premium.

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Sony announces mid-range Xperia XA2 Plus, with 18:9 display, Snapdragon 630, and Hi-Res Audio

At the start of the year, Sony unveiled two new mid-range smartphones in the Xperia XA2 and XA2 Ultra. They offered familiar Sony stylings, with chunky bezels and squared off corners, but the Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 chips and rear fingerprint sensors represented a considerable improvement over their XA1 predecessors.

Today, Sony has announced another entry in the lineup, the Xperia XA2 Plus. It features the same Snapdragon 630 SoC, and many of the same specs as the XA2 Ultra, but is the first in the series to include an elongated 18:9, 6-inch FHD+ display. This phone will sound better, too, with Sony's High-Resolution Audio technology and DSEE HX audio upscaling.

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[Update: Now available] Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact now up for pre-order in the US

The Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact are arguably Sony's best-looking phones yet. Unveiled at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona in February, the latest Sony flagships have rear fingerprint sensors and sport 18:9 displays with far less bezel than we're accustomed to from Xperia devices. They both include the freshest Snapdragon 845 chip with 4GB of RAM and will ship with Android 8.0 Oreo.

I was impressed by them in my hands-on at MWC, especially in view of Sony finally embracing a more modern design aesthetic — even if the Compact is a little chunky. Sony doesn't usually concentrate on the US market too much, but we learned a couple of days ago that Best Buy would have both phones available to pre-order from today, and both are now live on the site in a range of different colors.

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