Sony Xperia X Performance review: Chief of staff

GSMArena team, 17 June 2016.

Phone

We have a single-SIM Sony Xperia X Performance, but there is a dual-SIM version if you need an extra phone line. Either model has active noise cancellation with a dedicated mic.

The call log can be filtered by missed, incoming and outgoing calls.

Dialer with smart dial - Sony Xperia X Performance review Call log - Sony Xperia X Performance review Call log filtering - Sony Xperia X Performance review Phonebook - Sony Xperia X Performance review
Dialer with smart dial Call log Call log filtering Phonebook

The Xperia X's also share a fairly unique feature, a built-in answering machine. It picks up an incoming call, plays your greeting and would later replay your friends' messages. You can set up your greeting and pickup conditions.

The Xperia X has a built-in answering machine - Sony Xperia X Performance review The Xperia X has a built-in answering machine - Sony Xperia X Performance review The Xperia X has a built-in answering machine - Sony Xperia X Performance review
The Xperia X has a built-in answering machine

Loudspeaker

The Sony Xperia X Performance has a pair of speakers that can output stereo sound. In terms of loudness, the phone fell in the Below average category on our loudspeaker test, much like the Xperia X, though there were minor differences. Among the top-shelf competitors, the G5 and the P9 are the ones to score noticeably higher.

What the X Performance lacks in punch, though, it makes up for in quality. Even at maximum volume the sound is clean with great definition and no signs of distortion.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Sony Xperia X 61.3 61.1 65.7 Below Average
HTC 10 (Theater mode) 61.9 66.0 62.1 Below Average
Sony Xperia X Performance 63.4 65.8 67.8 Below Average
Sony Xperia Z5 65.1 62.3 66.3 Below Average
Apple iPhone 6s 63.9 66.7 66.8 Below Average
Samsung Galaxy S7 69.5 69.3 71.1 Below Average
HTC 10 (Music mode) 63.1 66.7 74.3 Average
Motorola Moto X Force 66.3 66.7 71.7 Average
LG G5 68.7 70.9 73.5 Good
Huawei P9 72.1 66.6 75.6 Good
Sony Xperia C5 Ultra 69.8 66.6 82.7 Very Good
Xiaomi Mi 4s 73.7 68.6 82.9 Very Good
Meizu MX5 75.7 73.5 79.5 Excellent
OnePlus 2 75.7 73.5 80.7 Excellent

Messaging

The Sony Xperia X Performance has a beautiful Material design messaging app. It feels like the instant messengers you might be used to, including conversations wallpapers and cute stickers you can send.

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

For text entry, Sony picked the SwiftKey keyboard. It became popular for its swipe input, but regular tap-typing with text correction is available as well.

Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Performance review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Performance review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Performance review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Performance review Customizeable SwiftKey keyboard - Sony Xperia X Performance 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 Performance review Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories - Sony Xperia X Performance review Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories - Sony Xperia X Performance review
Lifelog tracks more than just steps and calories

TrackID is Sony's trusted song recognition software, which has since evolved way past that. It can now show you music charts by country, give you live updates on recent searches across the world, and store your search history as well.

TrackID - Sony Xperia X Performance review TrackID - Sony Xperia X Performance review TrackID - Sony Xperia X Performance review TrackID - Sony Xperia X Performance review TrackID - Sony Xperia X Performance review
TrackID