Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium has a HDR screen, super slow-mo

Sony Xperia XZ Premium
Sony Xperia XZ Premium

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27 February 2017 | 0

Sony’s Xperia XZ Premium shines, quite literally. The first thing you notice about the Japanese electronics giant’s tenpole smartphone is the mirror-finish that surrounds the device giving it a sparkly appearance that seems destined to require lots of polishing.

But the innovation in the phone is found below the surface. Its primary features are both firsts on a smartphone: a 4K HDR display and super slow-motion video.

The 4K screen is 5.5″ across, which means it’s small enough that the 4K resolution shouldn’t make too much of a difference. On a large screen like a television, the extra resolution is immediately noticeable but on a small screen it’s much more difficult for the human eye to discern the extra resolution.

But this is where the HDR comes in. Short for ‘high dynamic range,’ HDR is a technology that widens the dynamic range that can be displayed so both dark and bright areas of an image are represented equally well.

The technology has been in some cameras for a while and is now coming to video, with some downloaded movies from Amazon Prime featuring HDR information.

The super slow-motion is a fun feature that’s the XZ Premium’s party trick. Sony is branding it Motion Eye and it captures video at 960 frames per second. When played back at the normal 30 frames-per-second, the video appears slowed by 32 times so things that happen fast can be viewed in super detail. The video works at 720p resolution.

Other features of the phone, which will be available in the second quarter, include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, which is capable of 4G LTE data transfer at up to 1Gb/s depending on the cellular network. There’s a 19MP rear camera, 13MP front camera and 4K video recording.

The main interface to the phone is a USB-C connector compatible with USB3.1. There’s also a headphone socket.

Sony’s other big annoncements of this year’s Mobile World Congress include the Xperia Touch, an interactive projector that turns any flat surface into a 23” HD touchscreen, with either horizontal or vertical ultrashort-throw projection.

The interface is fast, fluid and responsive to physical touch which is made possible through a combination of infrared light and real-time detection via a built-in camera, at a rate of 60 frames-per-second.

Sony also showed off its Xperia Ear ‘open-style concept’ based on ‘open-ear’ audio technology developed within Sony’s Future Lab Program, an incubator that enables consumers to trial and shape prototypes from Sony’s R&D division.

It uses Sony’s acoustics research and leadership to deliver wireless open-ear stereo headphones, so users can listen to music and receive notifications, whilst simultaneously hearing sounds from them.

And just as with Xperia Ear, Xperia Ear ‘open-style concept’ will be powered by Sony’s Agent digital assistant technology that uses conversational voice interaction and head gestures to help users access information and communicate.

IDG News Service

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