Sony kicked 2013 off with a bang when it announced the Sony Xperia Z. This new flagship Android handset is now in stores offering up its wealth of features to all, so let us show you how to get the most from this new top dog.
Tip number 1: Controlling home screens
The first thing you’ll want to do when you get your Xperia Z is customise it to your style. By default there are five homescreens, but pinching together will let you add up to seven, reduce them down to one and change which screen serves as your default, simply by tapping the house icon in the corner.
Tip number 2: Using themes
Another way to customise your Xperia Z is with themes, again by pinching together on any homescreen and choosing ‘themes’ from the menu at the bottom you can select from a range of themes, each with its own colour scheme and wallpaper.
Tip number 3: Organising apps
All of your phone’s applications can be found in the app drawer, but keeping track of where each one is can get tricky, to try and make it easier, Sony has added a drop down menu which lets you organise your apps to your own order, alphabetically, by frequency or by when they were installed.
Tip number 4: Quick Settings
One of the most useful widgets Sony has included on the Xperia Z is Quick Settings. Adding it to a homescreen grants you fast access to toggling WiFi, Bluetooth, brightness, mobile data, sound settings, GPS, flight mode, roaming, your mobile hotspot and NFC.
Tip number 5: HDR video
The Xperia Z is the first smartphone on the market capable of HDR video, but it’s not immediately clear how to activate this mode. In your camera, rather than just pressing the record button, choose video mode and the option for HDR will then appear on the left hand side, from here you can toggle whether it’s on or off whilst you’re shooting a Full HD movie.
Tip number 6: Stamina Mode
With a quad-core processor and a 5-inch 1080p display, you might find yourself getting sucked into Full HD movies or 3D games and as a result draining the battery a lot faster. Stamina mode helps squeeze every last ounce of power out of your phone before needing a trip to the charger and Sony says it can extend the life of your phone by up to four times. To turn it on, head to ‘Power management’ in the Settings app and toggle STAMINA mode on.
Tip number 7: Getting your phone wet
Typically smartphones and water don’t mix but if your drop your Xperia Z in a puddle or spill a drink over it, don’t worry. Sony has made sure all the important ports and connectors are covered and as such it can survive a quick dip without worry.
Tip number 8: Uninstalling apps
Uninstalling apps on stock Android requires that you wade through menus to find, stop and remove the app you want, with the Xperia Z, choose the uninstall option from the app drawer menu and simply tap the red ‘X’ next to the app you want gone, simple.
Tip number 9: Using NFC
More and more smartphone manufacturers are introducing NFC into their phones. With the Xperia Z, make sure you tick the box in your ‘Wireless & networks’ settings and you’ll be able to transfer media or connect to compatible accessories, with a simple tap.
Tip number 10: Small apps
Widgets permanently frequent your homescreens until you manually remove them, but the Sony Xperia Z also has temporary widgets called Small apps. Tapping the app switching button not only shows any full applications currently running, but along the bottom offers up quick access to a calculator, timer, virtual post-it note, and voice recorder with the option to install more if you want from the Play Store.