Xperia Ion is one of the latest smartphone launched by Sony. It comes with android 4.0 and would soon get the jelly bean update. The phone is Playstation certified which means you can play some of the Playstation games directly on your Xperia Ion.
Xperia Ion was launched in India at a price tag of Rs 36,999. Recently we did the Unboxing of the Sony Xperia Ion and today we are going to share our views about the device.
Display & Design
Sony Xperia Ion has a dimension of 133 x 68 x 10.8 mm and weighs just 144grams. The phone feels pretty good in hand due to the curved back. It has a 4.55 inch LED-backlit LCD capacitive touchscreen which is capable of producing 16 million colors. The display is powered by Sony Bravia Engine for Mobiles. The Screen has a resolution of 720×1280 pixels with approximately 323 ppi pixel density.
Above the display you have a 1.3 megapixel camera for video calling, a tiny notification LED and a proximity sensor. The front camera is capable of recording videos at 720p@30fps.
Below the display, there are 4 usual android touch buttons, for properties, home, back and search. We faced absolutely no problems while using the touch buttons.
On the back side we have a 12 megapixel camera, LED flash, loudspeaker and Xperia Branding. Xperia Ion has a brushed aluminium back with rubberized plastic tabs at the top and bottom.
The top plastic tab can be removed in order to insert the micro SIM or the microSD card. After removing the top plastic cover you would find a plastic micro SIM tray. You just need to pull out the tray and put your micro SIM in it and put it back.
Sony has always given a special attention to the design of the phones. We really liked the Xperia Branding done at the Bottom of the phone.
At the top you have a 3.5mm audio jack.
At the bottom of the phone we just have a mic and nothing else.
On the right side you have a power/lock key, volume rocker and a dedicated camera key.
Sony has beautifully covered the USB and HDMI slots using a small door. You just need to open the small door on the left side to access both USB and HDMI ports.
Hardware & Performance
Sony Xperia Ion is powered by a 1.5Ghz dual core Qualcomm MSM8260 Snapdragon processor with a Adreno 220 GPU. The phone has a 1GB Ram and with such a good hardware specs the phone does not seem to lack power. We performed few benchmark tests on the phone and it performed moderately well in these tests. Xperia Ion scored 2848 in Quadrant benchmark test and 6824 in AnTuTu Benchmark test. Both the tests are popular benchmarking tests for android phones. Xperia Ion performed better than the samsung galaxy note and S2. The phone failed to beat the Quad core beasts HTC One X and the Galaxy S3. Overall, Xperia Ion performance is moderate.
Xperia Ion comes with a 16GB internal storage (12.9 GB user accessible) and a microSD slot which supports mircoSD card of upto 32GB storage. Talking about the connectivity features, Xperia Ion supports bluetooth v2.1, wi-fi direct and DLNA. The phone also has a microUSB and HDMI port.
The phone runs on android v.40 i.e ice cream sandwich with a customized UI.We really liked the Sony’s Timescape UI as it gives a new look to the UI without affecting the performance of the phone.
The in-built music player app has a good interface and you can easily access your music in several ways. You can find the music on youtube, search artist info on wikipedia and search for lyrics in google. All these functions can be performed using the music player app itself.
The album application lets you access all your images and videos at one place organized in a month based tile view. You can even customize the tiles size i.e you can make images of one month to be bigger than the images of other months.
Timescape app is one of my favorite app found on the Sony Smartphones. You can easily integrate your social media accounts in the app. Timescape app then present the feeds from these accounts in a floating tile interface. TrackID is also a great app which comes pre-loaded with the Xperia Ion. You can easily record music from a tv or external speaker using the app. You will also get the artist and track information of the recorded music.
Similar to other sony smartphones, Wisepilot and McAfee Security app also comes pre-loaded with the Xperia Ion.
Xperia Ion has a 12 megapixel autofocus camera. The phone has a dedicated camera key which is not present in most of the latest smartphones like HTC One X. Dedicated camera key is always appreciated as it provides a quick access to the camera. Company has provided a LED flash with the camera.
One of the best feature of the Xperia Ion camera is the 3D sweep panorama. The camera also has various other features like Geo-tagging, touch focus, face and smile detection, image stabilization etc. Below are the few sample images taken with the Sony Xperia Ion camera.
Camera of the phone performed pretty well even in the low light conditions. Camera also supports video recording at 1080p@30fps with continuous autofocus, video light and video stabilizer. Here is an sample video captured using the Xperia Ion Camera.
Xperia Ion comes with a 1900 mAh non-removable battery. Battery life of the phone is quite impressive. We were able to use the phone for around one and a half day with moderate usage. The phone can remain on standby for around 400 hours in 2G and 350 hours in 3G. The battery can provide a talk time of around 10 hours (2G). Once fully charged you can play music on the phone for upto 12 hours.
Sony Xperia Ion is one of the best smartphones in terms of build and design. The phone performs moderately well in terms of processing capabilities. The camera and battery life are the 2 advantages of this phone over other android smartphones. But at a price tag of rs 36,999 it is not able to outshine its competitors in the same price range i.e HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3. We would recommend this phone to the users looking for an android smartphone with great looks & design, better build quality, moderate performance, good camera and great battery backup.