Sony Xperia X Compact review: Small and brave

Small and brave

GSMArena team, 17 September 2016.

Phone

The Sony Xperia X Compact is a single SIM device, and previous Compacts haven't been available as a dual-SIM version so we wouldn't hold our hopes up for this one.

The call log is separated from the contacts, but there's a shortcut to those in the upper right corner. It can be filtered by missed, incoming and outgoing calls. Smart dial is supported too.

Dialer with smart dial - Sony Xperia X Compact review Call log - Sony Xperia X Compact review Phonebook - Sony Xperia X Compact review Favorites - Sony Xperia X Compact review
Dialer with smart dial Call log Phonebook Favorites

Loudspeaker

The Sony Xperia X Compact has front firing stereo speakers and the benefits of this setup are rather obvious. The ones on the X Compact aren't very loud, though, in fact they fall in the Below average category in our test.

You can't expect more from such a small device and in the past Sony's smartphones haven't excelled in this test either. All that said, the Xperia Z5 Compact was still a notch louder.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Sony Xperia X 61.3 61.1 65.7 Below Average
Sony Xperia X Performance 63.4 65.8 67.8 Below Average
Sony Xperia X Compact 64.1 65.1 69.5 Below Average
Apple iPhone SE 63.6 68.0 68.0 Below Average
Sony Xperia Z5 Compact 66.3 65.0 70.5 Average
Samsung Galaxy S6 68.1 66.3 73.7 Good
Huawei nova 69.2 71.9 80.6 Very Good

Messaging

The Sony Xperia X Compact has a customized messaging app with all the possible bells and whistles. If you haven't transferred all your texting to other platforms, of course.

Ours came with panda stickers pre-installed, but you can download more (free and paid sticker packs are available). You can also send your own creations drawn in the Sketch (obviously, this changes the message type to MMS).

Messaging app - Sony Xperia X Compact review Stickers are available, just like in chat apps - Sony Xperia X Compact review Stickers are available, just like in chat apps - Sony Xperia X Compact review Stickers are available, just like in chat apps - Sony Xperia X Compact review Stickers are available, just like in chat apps - Sony Xperia X Compact review
Messaging app Stickers are available, just like in chat apps

For text entry, Sony picked the SwiftKey keyboard. It's touted as having one of the best prediction algorithms, which is fine and dandy, but means you can't remove the suggestions bar at all. Other than that limitation, the keyboard offers multiple layouts and themes, 5 different sizes, undocking, secondary symbols upon long press, swipe input - pretty much everything.

Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Compact review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Compact review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Compact review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Compact review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Compact review
Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard

The keyboard is highly customizable - you can change the layout, choose what characters are available (accented characters, emoji), enable a number row, resize the keyboard or even undock it. The Messaging app also handles voice input.

Other apps

Lifelog tracks a host of daily activities, including walking, running and sleeping, but also the music you listen and the photos you take or the apps you use. It then presents the info in a split-screen view with a timeline on top and detailed numbers on the bottom.

Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories - Sony Xperia X Compact review Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories - Sony Xperia X Compact review Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories - Sony Xperia X Compact review
Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories

The News app is a news aggregator, pulling stories from sources on topics of your choice. It can also issue two daily bulletins for you at a time you specify, so you don't miss out on current events.

 - Sony Xperia X Compact review  - Sony Xperia X Compact review  - Sony Xperia X Compact review

Xperia lounge is Sony's own entertainment app, feeding you exclusive content and competitions related to music, movies and games.

Xperia Lounge - Sony Xperia X Compact review Xperia Lounge - Sony Xperia X Compact review Xperia Lounge - Sony Xperia X Compact review
Xperia Lounge

Reader comments

  • No SONY No PARTY

Awesome

  • AnonD-521587

glad you got it over the SE man. the compact flagship range is something that has no competition for sony. better display, better camera, better features. Microsd card, better battery life, better literally everything. Enjoy the phone

  • Zozzy

Thansk man already bought it instead of se and im very satisfied 😁