Sony Xperia XA review: Narrow margins

Narrow margins

GSMArena team, 22 June 2016.

Introduction

Sometimes an underdog proves to be the crowd favorite. This may be the case with the Sony Xperia XA - the most affordable of the four X-phones we've seen so far and yet it probably causes the most excitement when you hold it in hand.

Sony Xperia XA review

A big part of that is what Sony calls an edge-to-edge display. The Xperia XA is the narrowest 5" phone in our database - yes, even the bezelless Sharp Aquos Crystal is a fraction of a millimeter wider!

The scratch resistant glass over the screen has its neatly curved edges flow into the rounded metal sides of the phone almost seamlessly. Even flagships can't always get such a clean transition from glass to metal.

With Xperia's classy design and Sony's multitude of Audio Visual enhancements, the XA promises to be more than a mid-range commoner.

Key features

  • Narrowest 5" phone, metal frame, polycarbonate back
  • 5" 720 x 1,280px LCD with 294ppi, Mobile Bravia Engine 2; 2.5D scratch-resistant glass, oleophobic coating
  • Android v6.0 Marshmallow with Xperia launcher
  • MediaTek MT6755 Helio P10 chipset, octa-core 2GHz Cortex-A53 CPU; Mali-T860MP2 GPU; 2GB RAM
  • 13 MP camera with 1080p@30fps video recording and hybrid autofocus; 8 MP front-facing camera with 1080p@30fps video
  • 16GB of built-in storage and a microSD card slot
  • Single and dual-SIM variants
  • LTE Cat.4 (150Mbps); Dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n; A-GPS/GLONASS receiver, Bluetooth v4.1, FM radio with RDS
  • Active noise cancellation with a dedicated mic
  • 2,300mAh non-removable battery (Pump Express 2.0 supported)

Main disadvantages

  • Battery capacity is only average, not particularly efficient 28nm chipset
  • No fingerprint reader

The fingerprint reader is gone - Sony says it would have made the bezel thicker and the company firmly believes the right place for the reader is on the side, that's why it didn't just move it to the front or back.

In Sony's new naming scheme "XA" is basically a letter of the alphabet - the Xperia XA and XA Ultra are in a class of their own, sitting some way below the X and X Performance in the pecking order.

Sony Xperia XA official images - Sony Xperia XA review Sony Xperia XA official images - Sony Xperia XA review Sony Xperia XA official images - Sony Xperia XA review Sony Xperia XA official images - Sony Xperia XA review
Sony Xperia XA official images

At first glance the specs, in plain numbers, may be hard to defend at the Xperia XA price point. However, we believe "user experience for the buck" may be a fairer way to judge a phone than just plain "bang for the buck."

So put away your measuring sticks and put on your silk gloves - this is dressage, not horse racing.

Reader comments

  • CyberLord94

Bootloop = is your problem Find a solution on Google😉

  • Bobo

Please help me out with this issue that is troubling my phone, I have updated my phone and now is not more functioning as it's used to be. Please with the previous software

  • Brightongirl

I have only had the Sony experia XA a few weeks 2nd hand. My only complaint is, that it takes a long time to fire up. When you turn it on. Seems to take for ever. To even get to the android logo. 😐