Sony’s latest affordable smartphones, the Xperia E4 and E4g, sport a 5-inch qHD screen, a promised two days of battery life and a 5-megapixel camera packed with tons of features. But is it a serious upgrade over the Xperia E3?
Sony’s affordable Xperia E3 phone only hit stores at the end of 2014, offering the usual slick Sony design as well as 4G support, but hampered by a low-res 4.5-inch screen and an iffy 5-megapixel snapper. But that hasn’t stopped Sony from pumping out a follow-up just a few months later, the Xperia E4, which comes with a larger 5-inch IPS display. And while the E4 lacks LTE support, there’s a new Xperia E4g for anyone who demands nippy web browsing and media streaming.
Apparently the focus of the Xperia E4 and E4g is entertainment, hence that larger screen which rocks a qHD resolution. Hopefully the handset won’t be much larger than the Xperia E3, however, as the bezels appear to be reduced in the press photos. We can’t imagine it will offer the richest visuals around, but hopefully it’ll be a match for the Moto G’s 5-inch 720p screen.
Once again there’s a 5-megapixel camera on the rear, packed with most of Sony’s usual big features including HDR and the freaky AR Fun mode which lets you throw coloured turds and virtual bombs at your mates. You can stream live to YouTube and other social media channels, while the 2-megapixel front-facing camera has a dedicated selfie mode for those vanity pics.
The Xperia E3 made it through a full day on each charge, but Sony promises a mighty two days of life from the 2,300mAh battery. Of course, that’s the same promise Sony made for the Xperia Z3, and while we didn’t quite get those results in our real-life testing, we did manage a day and a half between charges. And apparently the Xperia E4 also offers fast charging, so you don’t need to plug it in for hours to get a decent charge.
As for performance, the Xperia E3’s 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400 processor appears to have been upgraded to a 1.3GHz chipset for the Xperia E4 and 1.5GHz for the E4g, although the exact make hasn’t been revealed. We wouldn’t expect the experience to be much of an upgrade over the E3, which already offered quite a smooth experience for a budget model.
Expect the Sony Xperia E4 to go on sale soon, with the E4g hitting the UK in April. The E4g will cost around €129 – so expect just over £100 here in Blighty – and will be available from Carphone Warehouse, O2 and Vodafone.