Sony Xperia 10 II smartphone in review: The rest of the mid-range does it better

The Sony Xperia 10 II is visually appealing and offers some of the latest features on the market. We are disappointed by its lack of battery life, in-build wireless charging, and software issues. Readers may also want to know what they can expect from the Sony smartphone in terms of features and performance. Read on to learn what we think are its main strengths and weaknesses, detailing why this is such an appealing device.

We were able to test this budget phone for just under $236. It does not come with the increased features of the higher-end models, but it is a good option for those that want to invest in an inexpensive phone. That the Xperia 10 was a high-tech device at a higher price is shown by the Xperia 1 and 5 from last year which were far more expensive at prices of 800 Euros [ $944] and 950 Euros [ $1,120]. At that time, the Xperia 10 placed itself in the most affordable category. It’s now followed by the Xperia 10 II, which is a little more expensive at $472 though.

For this test, we compare the Sony smartphone with competitors listed below. By continuing down the list, you can see other devices in our database and continue comparing them with the one that you chose above.

Case – Waterproof Sony smartphone

Sony Xperia 10 II is a great smartphone with high durability and feel. They use plastic & glass to create a light phone that weighs only 151 grams and carries an amazing design. Thanks to its IP65/68 certification, the Xperia 10 II is also dust- & waterproof and can be used in tough conditions without problems. Thanks to its 21:9 display format, it’s much narrower than other smartphones, making it easier for consumers to get a handle of the phone. So you get the same length with a larger screen. Pretty cool, right?

One of the most convenient aspects of this device is the SIM/microSD slot. Not only can it be removed with no tools but it’s also very easy to insert one card at a time when you only have two slots on top.

Connectivity – Notification LED and USB Type-C

The inclusion of Snapdragon 665, Adreno 610, 4 GB RAM and 128 GB ROM are all features that you would find in Sony’s latest Xperia smartphone. These top-of-the-line specifications are sure to impress and make the Xperia 10 II worth your attention. If you decide to downsize the SanDisk Ultra 400, there are tradeoffs in the form of losing the dual-SIM function. But if that doesn’t really concern you and you’re okay with less storage space, then it is worth considering.

Both nanoSIM slots support LTE, VoLTE, and VoWiFi, and the Xperia 10 II is also available in a single-SIM version. A notification LED is provided as well as a 3.5 mm audio jack and DRM Widevine L1. The USB Type-C port enables wired data transfers with the USB 2.0 standard.

Software – Almost no third-party apps

The Xperia 10 II allows users to access an “Android 10” operating system without tedious customization modifications. It offers long-term security patches, experience tips & intelligent maintenance functions all accessible through a user-friendly interface. With the rise of other apps like Facebook and Netflix, there are only two apps made by third-party manufacturers. They cannot be easily uninstalled.

At the time of this test, the update to the security patch for July 2020 was already available.

The Sony Xperia 10 II is a powerful smartphone that offers a lot of features. It has a 5.5-inch display with a resolution of 1080 x 2160 pixels and supports HDR content. It also has an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, and dual rear cameras – 16MP and 8MP.

This phone is designed to offer you the best possible experience for watching videos, playing games, reading books or doing anything else on your phone.

The Sony Xperia 10 II comes with Android Oreo 8.0 out of the box with Xperia UI on top of it. The software is smooth and fast so you won’t have any issues navigating around the interface or using apps or games on it.

Sony’s latest flagship smartphone is not

Communication and GPS – Android phone with NFC and LTE

The Xperia 10 II can establish mobile connections in GSM, 3G, and LTE networks. In the latter case, Cat. 11 downloads are possible at speeds of up to 600 Mb/s. Uploads are supported with Cat. 5 and up to 75 Mb/s.

Wireless connections via NFC, Bluetooth 5.0 and Wi-Fi 5 are possible in close ranges. With our Netgear Nighthawk AX12 reference router, the Sony smartphone achieves an average of 326 Mb/s for receiving data and 334 Mb/s for sending data. While the first result is on par with the other devices in our test field, the second result is enough for second place.

The Sony Xperia 10 II can determine its location using GLONASS and GPS. With the GPS Test app, we were able to achieve an accuracy of four meters outdoors. In closed rooms, however, no positioning was possible.

On our mandatory bike ride, the Sony smartphone showed a similar accuracy to our reference device, the Garmin Edge 520, whereby the Xperia 10 II tracks curves in a slightly more generous way most of the time. Therefore, the Android phone is well suited for simple navigation applications.

Cameras – Shutter release has a strong delay

Sony has recently introduced the Xperia 10 II, with a triple-camera that provides high-quality shots, detailed information, and more. Three cameras are included in this purchase: a 12 MP main sensor with an f/2.0 aperture, two 8 MP sensors with f/2.4 and f/2.2 apertures for telephoto and wide-angle shots, and an 8 MP camera with an f/2.0 aperture on the front for portrait photography. This camera would likely produce good photos in outdoors but even a little amount of daylight can be insufficient to produce quality pictures. This may cause the images to have less details that are recognizable. An additional image mode allows you to adjust the image with a variety of beautifying filters.

The camera is struggling to capture detail in both close-ups and ambient shots, which is largely due to the low exposure. But it does still show a lot of colors and makes some objects look blurry but not faded. Another benefit of using an extreme wide-angle lens is that objects appear closer to the camera, creating a better transition between edges and highlights. In low-light conditions, our photo app takes an extra long time to process. You would probably want to use your night mode for higher quality and faster processing. But in general, the photo app takes a longer time to save these pictures from when you press the shutter button and we hope you are patient with us. With manual modes, users have the ability to adjust focus, shutter speed, brightness and white balance. However, these modes are only available with a significant performance decrease.

The Xperia 10 II produces videos with a quality similar to that of our sample photos. Here too, users need to be prepared for a short delay before the recording starts after having pressed the shutter button. An image stabilizer reliably compensates for camera shake, and the camera can handle the adjustment well when switching between light and dark scenes. Users can select different shooting modes from the items listed in the screenshot.

Display – OLED screen with low PWM frequency

The Sony Xperia 10 II display has an amazing resolution of 2520 x 1080 pixels and is available with a 6 inch OLED screen in the 21:9 format. On average, the APL50 smartphone achieves a value of up to 680 cd/m² thanks to its sensor. When the light sensor is deactivated, the maximum brightness is 354 cd/m². Essentially, the Xperia 10 II is in the middle of our test field.

Our engineers have been measuring Sony TVs and they find that they are using pulse-width modulation for brightness control and the frequency of 156 Hz is pretty low. PWM may cause epileptic seizures in certain lighted conditions.

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