What’s new for Sony’s 2024 flagship phone


What’s new for Sony’s 2024 flagship phone

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Sony has just announced its Xperia 1 VI and it’s their latest flagship smartphone which succeeds last year’s Xperia 1 V. While the Mark VI model retains a familiar rectangular candybar design, there are several welcomed upgrades in the camera department. However, there’s a major downgrade when it comes to its display.

Sony Xperia 1 VI

The Sony Xperia 1 VI still gets a 6.5″ screen but they have changed the display aspect ratio from 21:9 to 19.5:9, which is similar to the current Galaxy S24 Ultra. Instead of a headlining 4K HDR OLED display, the Mark VI model now gets a lower Full HD+ but it is still uses an OLED panel that supports 120Hz variable refresh rate and 240Hz Touch scanning rate.

For improved durability, the device gets Corning Gorilla Glass Victus 2 for the front. However, the rear gets the previous generation Gorilla Glass Victus.

Brightest display on Xperia but no more 4K 21:9 display

Sony Xperia 1 VI features a 6.5″ Full HD+ OLED screen

According to Sony, the display on the Xperia 1 VI is their brightest yet. Without mentioning specific figures in nits, the new Xperia 1 has 1.5x boosted brightness for ease of viewing under bright conditions. There’s also Sunlight Vision which improves visibility under direct sunlight while preventing overexposed highlights. To ensure high image quality similar to its Bravia TVs, the Xperia 1 uses AI to improve contrast, colours and clarity.

Better stereo speakers, retains 3.5mm headphone jack

Sony Xperia 1 VI retains 3.5mm headphone jack

In the audio department, the Xperia 1 VI offers a full stage stereo speakers that ensures a balanced output from both left and right. Sony says the speaker units themselves have undergone significant enhancements which reduces distortion at high volumes and they have also increased the sound pressure level for a more impactful and immersive audio experience.

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Similar to its predecessor, Sony has retained the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack, a feature that’s very rare on modern flagship smartphones. Whether you prefer wired or wireless, the Xperia 1 VI promises high-resolution and low latency audio with support for LDAC DSEE Ultimate upscaling and Bluetooth LE Audio.

Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, Updated Game enhancer

Under the hood, the Xperia 1 VI runs on Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chip with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. For an optimal gaming experience, the built-in Game enhancer now has FPS Optimiser. This feature helps to optimise CPU usage and frame rate based on your gaming environment. You can also make further tweaks on the touch input which includes three levels of tracking speed and two levels of tap accuracy.

If the 256GB of onboard storage is not enough, the Xperia 1 VI still supports microSD card expansion. The slot allows you to add up to 1.5TB of extra storage.

Improved continuous telephoto camera and AI-assisted Auto Focus

The biggest highlight is the triple-camera setup for the rear. The main wide camera is a 52MP f.1,8 shooter that uses a 1/1.35″ Exmor T sensor and it offers both 24mm or a 48mm focal length. To go wider, the ultra-wide shooter is a 12MP f/2.2 (16mm) camera with a 1/2.5″ Exmor RS sensor.

Meanwhile, the telephoto camera is a 12MP shooter that uses a 1/3.5″ Exmor RS sensor mated to a variable periscope setup that offers a continuous optical zoom between 3.5x (85mm) and 7.1x (170mm). That’s a huge improvement over last year’s model that offered a zoom range of (85mm – 125mm).

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Another nice touch is that the physical shutter button on the flat sides has been enlarged to provide a feel of a dedicated camera. This allows users to quickly launch the camera and take a snap instantly.

The Xperia VI can still record videos in 4K up to 120fps and there’s also S-Cinetone for Mobile which applies Sony’s colour science for cinematic videos straight from hitting record.

The Xperia 1 VI will also get Sony’s human pose estimation technology from its Alpha 9 Mark III cameras to ensure human subjects are always in focus. Instead of just recognising eyes or faces, the feature tracks the subject’s body and head position, making it possible to lock focus onto a subject even when the face is covered.

For selfies, it retains a 12MP front camera that uses a 1/2.9″ Exmor RS sensor.

The Xperia VI is powered by a 5,000mAh battery which supports PD fast charging via USB-C. It also supports wireless charging as well as reverse wireless charging. As you would expect from a flagship Sony smartphone, the device also gets IP68 rated dust and water resistance.

Out of the box, the Xperia 1 VI runs on Android 14. Sony is promising 3 OS upgrades and 4 years of security updates for their latest Xperia flagship smartphone.

Sony Xperia 1 VI Malaysia Availability

The Sony Xperia 1 VI will be available in Malaysia starting from July 2024. The device will be offered in two colour options – Black and Khaki Green. So far there are no pricing details yet and we reckon that Sony Malaysia would introduce a pre-order promo ahead of local availability.

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As a reference, the previous generation Sony Xperia 1 V with 256GB storage is officially priced at RM6,399 when it was released in Malaysia in July last year. Now, it is going for RM5,599 and Sony Malaysia is bundling WH-CH720 headphones, tempered glass and screen protector and a clear case.

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