Thursday, 19 September 2013

The new Sony Xperia M complete review and specification


Sony has made some great entry-level Android phones, but it's been a while since we saw a new model. The Xperia M injects new blood into the segment with both single and dual-SIM options. Based on the trademark Xperia design, the M scores high on looks and build quality. the one thing which i would like to say is the value for money gadget 

Sony Xperia M official images
The Sony Xperia M shares many of the design features that made its Xperia Z sibling such a looker, including the signature power key. It also has a hardware shutter key along with a couple of other features that are becoming quite rare in the smartphone world - a removable battery and a microSD card slot.
The Xperia M also offers a relatively big and sharp screen, 4" FWVGA of 245ppi, and a dual-core Krait processor, plus 720p video capture with its 5MP camera. These are specs that can be hard to find in the Xperia M's price bracket. Most entry-level Androids either have Cortex-A9 CPUs (or A5/A7), or record only VGA video or have sub-WVGA screens, which is why entry-level Windows Phone handsets are such an enticing alternative in the price range.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE and dual or quad-band HSPA support
  • Also available in a dual-SIM variant, called Xperia M dual
  • 21 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
  • 4" 16M-color TFT capacitive touchscreen of FWVGA resolution (480 x 854 pixels) at 245ppi
  • Android OS v4.1.2 Jelly Bean
  • Dual-core 1 GHz Krait CPU, Adreno 305 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8227 Snapdragon chipset
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 4 GB of built-in storage (2 GB user available)
  • microSD slot (cards up to 32GB supported)
  • 5 MP autofocus camera, single LED flashlight, geo-tagging, touch focus, HDR, hardware shutter key; VGA front-facing camera
  • 720p @ 30fps video capture
  • Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP
  • NFC support
  • ANT+ support for connecting low-power wireless sports accessories
  • PlayStation certified
  • Accelerometer, ambient light and proximity sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack; Walkman music player with many audio enhancements
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • microUSB port (charging)
  • Built-in LED strip provides a breathing light and notification light
  • 1,750mAh Li-Ion battery, user-replaceable

Main disadvantages

  • Still and video camera quality not great
  • No Mobile BRAVIA engine for the screen
  • Screen has sub-par viewing angles
  • Poor video codec support out of the box
  • Limited internal storage for installing apps
Sony may have hit a spot that Samsung, LG and HTC haven't thoroughly covered, which bodes well for the young Xperia M. The optional dual-SIM is great too, since a good smartphone with a second SIM slot can prove harder to find than you would expect (with screen, camera and chipset considerations in mind).
The Sony Xperia M runs Android 4.1 with Sony's magic sprinkled over many of the apps, including a Walkman music player with a dazzling array of sound enhancement options, plus the Album and Movies apps, which have some unique media management skills.

Sony Xperia M 
The bold Purple and Yellow colors are a plus too, with an excellent, soft touch plastic on the back - a welcome break from black-or-white options and the prevailing glossy plastics.

Unboxing the Xperia M

The Sony Xperia M comes in an old-fashioned box - big and colorful - which contains the phone itself, the battery, a compact charger and a microUSB cable. A single-piece headset is also in the bundle (though our review unit came without the full set of accessories so we didn't have one).
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
Sony Xperia M retail box, sans the headset

Design and handling

The Sony Xperia M closely follows the design guidelines of the Xperia family, without being too similar (like the Galaxy line). It has the trademark round, metal power key (the so-called OmniBalance design), slightly recessed sides of contrasting material like on the Xperia Z, an RGB light below the screen and a shutter key. The end result is one very attractive phone, despite being low on the totem pole.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
Xperia M follows the OmniBalance design language
The front holds the 4" LCD screen, surrounded by relatively big bezels (especially top and bottom, considering there are no physical buttons). Even so, the Xperia M is not a large device.
The back has a slight curve like Xperias of the Sony Ericsson era. It's made of plastic that wraps around the sides of the phone, giving it a nice unibody impression, but is actually removable so you can access the battery and the card slots.

The back is slightly curved
Another plus about the back is the material - it's a matte plastic with a soft touch finish, making it very pleasant to the touch and fingerprint-resistsant (but can be a bit hard to clean once it inevitably gets smudgy in the end).
It all culminates in a great in-hand feel for the Xperia M - it's small and fits easily in the hand, the materials are pleasant and it's pretty light. At 9.3mm it's not the thinnest phone around but slips very easily into pockets and, again considering its price tag, the M is very well proportioned having an overall impression of a pricier phone.


The earpiece is above the screen and to the left of it is the VGA front-facing camera, along with the proximity and ambient light sensors. Below the screen is the RGB notification light, which can use different colors to alert you to missed events and you can use the settings to customize the colors for different events. It's a bit too small for our liking, but works well enough even during the day.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
Earpiece, VGA camera and sensors above the screen • RGB light
The mic pinhole is also on the front, which makes it hard to accidentally cover with your finger.
The right side of the phone is where all the physical buttons are - starting with the Power/Lock key (which looks good but is also big and easy to press), the volume rocker (which is also easy to use) and the shutter key. The shutter key was a bit of a disappointment as it doesn't provide a solid click, but it's still a great option to have.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
Physical shutter key, volume rocker and aluminum power button
The top and left sides of the Xperia M is where the two wired ports reside, one on each side. The 3.5mm audio jack is on top in the center and the microUSB port is on the left. The port supports MHL so you can use it as a TV-out with an appropriate adapter to HDMI.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
MHL-enabled USB port • 3.5mm audio jack
The lanyard eyelet is at the bottom of the phone and you have to open the back panel to put the strap in.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
Lanyard eyelet on the bottom
While the back cover is open, you can also access the 1,750mAh battery and the microSD card slot (which you'll probably rely heavily on as the Xperia M provides only about 2GB of user accessible storage). Also here you'll spot either one or two microSIM card compartments, depending on which version of the phone you got (we have the single-SIM version).
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
The battery compartment, microSIM and microSD card slots are all easily accessible
Also on the back is the 5MP camera with LED flash and the loudspeaker.
Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M Sony Xperia M
The back of the Xperia M holds the camera, its flash and the loudspeaker
The phone comes in Black, White, Purple and Yellow, but we should mention that the Yellow version is not available in dual-SIM flavor for some reason.

Battery life

The Sony Xperia M battery isn't that big - a capacity of 1,750mAh is nothing to write home about, but the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini (also available in single and dual-SIM versions) has a 1,900mAh battery and the HTC One mini has a 1,800mAh and both are 4.3" phones. What we mean to say is, even though it may not be much, it's ok for its class.