Sony is bringing its 4K Ultra HD expertise from flat-screen TVs to smartphones.
On the eve of the IFA 2015 show in Berlin, the company unveiled a trio of flagship smartphones that the company hopes will reverse its fortunes in the competitive smartphone market. The phones are part of a strategy to focus on premium phones with higher margins instead of pursuing unit volume.
The three models include the Z5 Premium, which is the industry’s first smartphone with 4K display, and the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact, which lack 4K displays. The Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact will launch globally in October, with the Xperia Z5 Premium following in November. U.S. plans haven’t been announced.
All thee Android 5.1 phones feature a 23-megapixel main camera said to offer the fastest autofocus in a smartphone at 0.03 seconds. The camera also has 5x image zoom with a “minimum loss of quality,” the company said.
All three also offer high-resolution audio payback and up-conversion of lossy music files to near-high-res quality, and they have Sony’s LDAC codec to send music over Bluetooth in near-high-res quality.
All three feature Qualcomm 64-bit octacore 810 processor, 3GB RAM and Category 6 LTE.
The Xperia Z5 Premium adds 5.5-inch Triluminos 4K display with 806 PPI to display 4K videos and pictures taken with the phone’s 4K camera, as well as 4K YouTube streams and, eventually, 4K Netflix streams. Netflix offers a handful of 4K titles, but the Netflix mobile app doesn’t yet support 4K.
The phone will also up-scale content to 4K for playback on the display, and it plays back 4K content stored on a memory card taken from Sony’s 4K Action Cam FDR-X1000V.
Ultra HD content on the phone can also be displayed on a big-screen TV wirelessly via DLNA or with a cable via MHL 3.0.
To store all that 4K content, the phone features 32GB internal memory and 200GB MicroSD card slot.
For their part, the Z5 features a 5.2-inch display, and the Z5 Compact has a 4.6-inch display.