Sony Xperia J Review

 

Sony Xperia J
Sony Xperia J
Sony Xperia J
Sony Xperia J

Feature set summary for Sony Xperia J review

The Xperia J has a five-megapixel snapper that produces fine images for social networking and other everyday images, and has some nice additions such as panorama mode. There’s not much else in the way of features though.

 

Style and handling summary for Sony Xperia J review

The Xperia J’s body is curvy and sleek, especially for a mid-range handset. It has a metallic rim and soft-touch reverse, which looks great, as does the glowing base.

 

Battery power summary for Sony Xperia J review

The Xperia J lasted for a good 24 hours with moderate use, but stream movies or play games and the battery dies after six hours.

 

Performance summary for Sony Xperia J review

The Xperia J runs on a 1GHz single-core chip, which has problems running Android Ice Cream Sandwich, which led to judders, pauses and lengthy loading times. Demanding games had issues with low frame rates.

 

User friendliness summary for Sony Xperia J review

The onscreen keyboard does a decent job, and autocorrect is impressive, even though typing symbols and numbers can be fiddly. The 4inch display is okay for surfing the net.


Sony Xperia J Review Scoring Summary

Style & Handling
User Friendliness
Feature Set
Performance
Battery Power
Overall Score 3G.co.uk grey star

 

Pros :
Curvy, sleek chassis; good, colourful screen; 24 hours battery life.

 


Cons :
Lack of power; display could be brighter; Timescape is still disappointing.


Verdict:

The Sony Xperia J is a good-looking smartphone aimed at the middle of the market, but it doesn't offer the same impressive performance that its big brother the Xperia T offers.

Full Review and Specification for the Sony Xperia J

James Bond gets to play with the Sony Xperia T in Skyfall, but if you’re not quite in Mr Bond’s league, how about checking out the T’s little brother, the Xperia J?

 

Soft to touch

 

The latest Xperia handsets all have a similar look and feature a reverse with a soft touch that makes them nice to hold. The gentle curve on the back also means they fit nicely into the hand. The Xperia J weighs about the same as its bigger brother, but has a neater chassis, with a stretched 4in display that sits in the middle of a glass panel.

 

Sitting below the screen is a trio of touch-sensitive buttons for Home, Back and Menu – unlike the Xperia T, which has done away with its exterior keys in favour of onscreen ones. Above the screen sits the front-facing camera lens. The Xperia J also has a removable back, which when prised off allows the user access to the battery, along with the Micro SD memory cards slots and SIM card. The back is trimmed with a metallic bar that makes it feel quite solid.

 

The volume and power controls can be found on the right side of the handset, while the left is where you’ll see the Micro USB slot, which links the phone up to a computer and is also the port for charging.

 

More ice cream?

 

For some reason, Sony seems to linger around older versions of operating systems. The Xperia S plodded along with Android Gingerbread for ages before getting its Ice Cream Sandwich update, and both the Xperia T and Xperia J have been lumbered with Android Ice Cream Sandwich, when other Android phones are already experiencing the delights of Jelly Bean. The good news, though, is that ICS is still a pretty fresh OS and you shouldn’t feel you’re losing out on much while you await an update.

 

As usual there are five desktops that can be personalised with your own choice of widgets and apps (widgets can be resized as you wish now too). Sony has overlaid the operating system with its own interface. It’s got a neat electric design, but we still find the Timescape widgets to be far too slow and clunky – the social media feeds on Samsung and HTC phones are far superior.

 

Just my type

  

The onscreen keyboard is pretty decent for typing emails and texts. Speedy typists will appreciate the well-spaced-out keys, and the accurate auto-correct. There is also a built-in SWYPE facility, where you type by dragging your finger from one letter to the next. The only thing that is annoying is that to type symbols and numbers you have to use a little, fiddly key that sits next to the ‘hide keyboard’ button. So you can guess which one we kept hitting. It’s easier to hold the phone in landscape mode to get more space on the keyboard.

 

If you have waiting messages or other notifications a light appears above the display, but there is a second light too, at the bottom of the handset. It glows in whatever colour matches your chosen theme, but because it is in such an odd position you don’t always see it.

 

The waiting game

  

We found ourselves doing a lot of waiting – for an app to load or waiting for the browser. And when we played games, especially the more demanding ones such as Blood & Glory: Legend, we were plagued by low frame rates. It manages perfectly well with 2D games, but if you’re an avid gamer this is probably not the phone for you and you’d do better to choose a dual-core handset such as the HTC Desire X.

 

We encountered a lot of lag while playing with the Xperia J. It never got so bad that apps crashed or that we needed to reset the handset, but for instance we would tap an app shortcut or menu option and nothing would happen. And you could never be quite sure if you’d not tapped hard enough or if it was just taking its time – in most cases it turned out to be the latter.

 

Screen test

 

The Xperia J’s screen, at four inches, may be just over half an inch smaller than that on its big brother, but it’s fine for playing with apps, surfing the net and enjoying films. This is a decent mid-range display, which is colourful and offers decent viewing angles. Videos and photos look good, although some videos seemed a tad dark at times – it would have been nice to be able to notch up the brightness sometimes, although we could still see the display in bright sunlight.

 

 

Getting the picture

 

The Xperia J has a five-megapixel snapper that does a decent job of grabbing outdoor shots – the kind you’d take on a day out with the family. Look at the photos on a computer screen and you’ll see they aren't quite sharp enough, but they’re perfectly acceptable for social networking sites and colour repro is realistic. For low light shots Sony has included an LED flash, as well as some nice additional features such as panorama mode. There’s also a front-facing lens for making video calls – even if it does produce really grainy images.

 

Storage-wise, you get 4GB, although only 2GB is available for storing your apps and other media. But this can be expanded using the Micro SD memory card slot.

 

Battery life is impressive – with moderate use, sending emails and texts, playing music and fiddling with apps – we got more than 24 hours from a full battery, even with Wi-Fi on and the screen as bright as it could go. Playing games and streaming movies will see the battery run out of juice in about six hours.

 

Our conclusion

 

The Xperia J from Sony is one of the best-looking phones aimed at the mid-market at the moment. It has the design flare of the Xperia T but comes in at only half the price. It’s a shame that Sony has cut corners on specs to get it to this price – and that it is its performance that suffers most. If you’re a keen gamer, this will not be the phone for you, but for anyone else who looks for portability and good design, but on a low budget, there is plenty to like about the Xperia J.

 

Sony Xperia J Specification

GENERAL

Type of device Smartphone
Operating System Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
Dimensions 124 x 61 x 9.2mm
Weight 130g
Form factor Touchscreen
Input Touch Screen
Processor speed 1GHz
CPU Qualcomm (model not specified)
Graphic chipset  
Status Available
 

DISPLAY

Screen size 4 inches
Screen type TFT
Resolution 854x480
Display type TFT
 

Memory

RAM 512MB
Internal storage 4GB
Memory card slot
 

Camera

Camera 5 megapixels
Secondary camera VGA
Special camera features LED flash
 

Sound

3.5mm Jack
Music player Yes
Audio recording
Radio
FM Radio description  
 

Video

Video recording
Video player Yes
Video calling
Video streaming
 

Additional Features

Browser Android
Games Google Play
Voice control
Voice dialling
Other  
 

Messaging

SMS
MMS
Email
IM
 

Connectivity

Wi-Fi
Bluetooth
USB
NFC
GPS Yes
 

Network

Band Quad-band
EDGE
GPRS
HSDPA
4G/LTE  
 

Other

Colours (Standard) Black, White
Handsfree speaker phone
Customisable ringtones
What's in the box Charger
Website www.sonymobile.com
 

Battery

Standby 617 hours
Talktime 437 mins
Battery life multimedia 6 hours

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By Simon Thomas on 23rd October, 2012


Tags: Sony XperiaSony Xperia J


 
 
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