Sony Ericsson cut the cord at the end of 2011 and re-emerged as Sony Mobile in time for the new year. To go with the new name and the new outlook, Sony wanted a new lineup of phones that mirrored the refreshed image.
Step forward the NXT series. Three new handsets which moved away from the design language of old and adopted what has come to be known by Sony as’ Human Curvature’. The flagship Sony Xperia S debuted at CES whilst the mid-sized Xperia P and diminutive Xperia U followed at Mobile World Congress the following month.
Since the announcement we’ve been able to spend some quality time with each of these devices and have brought together our findings to help you decide if any of them are right for you, and if so which one should you buy?
Sony Xperia S
The largest and most technically capable of the three, the 1GHz dual-core Xperia S was the first on the scene and has adopted the role of flagship in Sony’s current smartphone portfolio. We fell in love with its design, UI, the gorgeous 4.3-inch 1280×720 HD display, 32GB memory and great 12-megapixel camera. Aside from some minor shortcomings (eg: non-removable battery and no ICS) it would make a fitting phone for any mobile enthusiast or someone looking to pick up one of the most competent Android devices around. The best thing about the Xperia S is the price, it’s the oldest device here and has dropped to £370 sim-free, which is a bargain.
4.5 out of 5
Sony Xperia P
For a mid-range device, the Xperia P exudes a sense of refinement users would usually expect from a far more expensive device. Sharing the NXT gene pool, the P looks great and includes nice design touches like an aluminium back cover. What’s more, the 4-inch 540×900 White Magic (read: super bright) display is stunning and 8-megapixel camera is more than capable. There’s no ICS and it does suffer from death grip which affects 3G signal (find out more in our review below). £330 SIM free is great value for a device that many users would be willing to pay more for. For those who don’t want an oversized device or who want premium features without a premium price tag, the Xperia P is for you.
4 out of 5
Sony Xperia U
The smallest member of the NXT family, the Xperia U sets out to provide premium smartphone features on a small scale. With its sharp 3.5-inch 800×480 display, dual-core processor and competent 5-megapixel camera the U will not disappoint any prospective buyer in the market for a smartphone, aside from some issues with limited users space (around 4GB of the quoted 8GB available to the user) and no ICS. Add to this the fact it’s a sub-£250 device and you have yourself a real competitor for one of the best mid-low end smartphones around today.
4 out of 5
Each of Sony’s NXT handsets presents itself as a capable device, it really boils down to the price tag and how much you’re willing to pay. Whatever you fork out, you’ll be happy with your purchase. Sony is in fact set up to release the Android ICS update for each of the NXT series next month, so by the time you pick one up, you may well have new features even we haven’t played with yet.