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Sony Xperia Z takes buffs, critics by storm
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 02 - 03 - 2013

Querubin J. Minas
Saudi Gazette
JEDDAH – In what appears to be a giant step forward for the smartphone industry, Sony seemed to have taken the global market by storm with the launch of Xperia Z.
Tech-savvy smartphone aficionados, in general, agree that Sony Xperia Z, regarded as Sony's flagship Android smartphone, has definitely met the very high expectations and even the hype accorded to it before the official launch in Dubai recently. The great majority of them were stunned on the unbelievably superior features of the phone pitted against other brands in the same category. Overall, Sony Xperia Z received 5-star rating in an ad hoc poll conducted recently.
Since it was first unveiled at CES 2013 in Las Vegas, Sony Xperia Z has been quite the brand to behold, and it attracted particular interest.
In an interview with the Saudi Gazette, Rudiger Odenbach, VP Middle East and Africa, Sony Mobile, said Xperia Z became an instant celebrity and captured the enthusiasm of customers and impressed even its critics, “as it's a phone designed for the tech mature that want to use the smartphone for everything from music, sharing pictures and videos, to watching movies. The fact that it can connect to all other devices without much fuss makes it an ideal choice. Apart from all this, the fact is that the Xperia Z is a smartphone with the highest specifications and best features, the Xperia Z delivers a unique user experience.”
Odenbach explained that “Xperia Z brings over half a century of innovation in TV, imaging, music and film to create a super phone experience that truly stands out. It's a precision-engineered full HD smartphone, which delivers an overall experience that combines cutting edge specifications. The 5” 1080 x 1920 full HD display has very high pixel density at 443 ppi to deliver an exceptionally bright and crisp viewing experience even in sunlight. The Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2 uses the same contrast enhancement technology as the latest BRAVIA TVs.
He further said in terms of durability, Xperia Z has been designed with the highest level of water and dust resistance despite a slim 7.9mm body. The phone includes a durable tempered glass and anti-shatter film on the front and back, as well as a tough skeleton frame built from glass fiber polyamide.
Xperia Z also has the highest levels of dust and water resistance in a premium smartphone meaning it can be submerged in water at a maximum depth of 1 meter for up to 30 minutes, and remains fully operational. Xperia Z also supports wet finger tracking, which makes it possible for to pick up calls and navigate on the screen.
In the 5” phone with a 1080p screen 2013 flagships, the HTC Butterfly and Oppo Find 5, along with Sony Xperia Z, promise to change the definition of sharpness forever. In this regard, Odenbach said smartphone enthusiasts opt for Sony Xperia Z as its features “are top of the range in the smartphone android range. It is a precision engineered full HD smartphone really. Also, expertise from our BRAVIA TV engineers goes into our mobile screens, to bring the same quality you'd expect from a top quality HDTV. The 5” 1080 x 1920 full HD display has very high pixel density – 443 ppi to deliver an exceptionally bright and crisp viewing experience even in sunlight. The Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine 2 uses the same contrast enhancement technology as the latest BRAVIA TVs.”
Besides all the great features packed into this slim, light weight (only 89gms) is brilliant, including the match with the latest Sony software and the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor. To add to this, “our retail network is doing an outstanding job of positioning it as a premium smartphone. We believe all these elements of the Xperia Z make it a strong competitor to other devices in the market.”
Amid warm welcome for Sony Xperia Z, he forecast that it would drastically improve the market share for Sony in the Middle East region.
“The entire Middle East region is very important for us. We grew market share across our focus countries including Saudi Arabia and the UAE - two of our largest markets in the region. Bearing in mind that Sony Mobile as a company has only been operational for about a year, what we have achieved is impressive. With our premium smartphone Xperia Z we are confident we have a product to be best in class,” he said.
He added that Sony Xperia Z will be available in Saudi Arabia and across Middle East and North Africa markets by this month, and will come in three colors black, purple and white, and with a tag price of SR2,499 in the Kingdom.
Asked whether Xperia Z launch will drastically change branding loyalty of customers in favor of Sony, notwithstanding that Samsung is much ahead of the pack among smartphone manufacturers, Odenbach firmly said “we have left nothing to chance with the launch of the Sony Xperia Z from its global to regional launch, a strong marketing campaign, retail branding and a smartphone that delivers on its promise with superlative features for picture quality, durability and multi-use make the Xperia Z a natural choice for anyone looking for a superior smartphone.”
The Sony Xperia Z will lead the pack in smartphones for Sony Mobile, he pointed out. “We are poised to be the premium alternative, especially in the mobile products sector. Our focus this year is on the smartphones and the tablet market.”
With respect to transfer of technical know-how in countries where Sony has wider presence, like in Saudi Arabia, Odenbach said “we engage directly with our target market in each country that we are present. For instance in Saudi Arabia we have initiated and cultivated relationships with bloggers and other key influencers to ensure that they are up to date with what Sony has to offer.”
On the possibility of setting up a “Smartphone Academy” in the Middle East, the Sony Mobile VP Middle East and Africa said “at Sony Mobile, we enable students, software developers and engineers access to a world of collaboration through Developer World, Sony Mobiles hub for tutorials, tools and the latest technical news related Android in general, and Sony Xperia smartphones and accessories in particular.”
He added that the website also holds 700+ downloads, ranging from open source archives for phone software, to phone white papers and developer tools and SDKs. “We are updating the site several times a week with news, tutorials, tech articles and downloads,” he noted.

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