Sony Xperia U Review

Sony Xperia UToday, we will talk about the Sony Xperia U budget phone launched by Sony in February 2012.

The smartphone carries the popular Xperia name and is targeted at the entry level of phone users; providing basic features and functions, decent specifications–not too high, not too low. Best of all, the phone is cheap and is easy to use, even for first-time users of a smartphone.

Like almost all other smartphones, the Xperia allows you to perform tasks that you would do on your desktop, laptop or tablet. You can check your email, log into your Facebook, and watch the occasional Youtube video.

Hardware Specs

The design of the Xperia U is pretty simple. One thing I like is the interchangeable cap at the bottom of the smartphone for easy customization. Out of the box, you can change the color to black or pink depending on your mood that day. The cell phone has a candy bar form, runs on a 1 GHz dual-core Cortex A9 with 512 MB RAM, 5 Megapixel camera with auto-focus and LED flash, and a 3.5 inch LCD display of 480 x 854 pixels. There is nothing fancy about the hardware specs, but the phone is pretty decent for everyday use.

Camera

The Xperia U’s 5 MP camera is quite basic and nothing to shout about. Fortunately, the quality is good enough for taking casual photos for the family album once in a while. Below are some shots taken from the smart phone’s 5 MP camera.

Photo taken during daytime:

Sony Xperia U - Daylight

Photo taken indoors:

Sony Xperia U - Indoor

Photo taken at night:

Sony Xperia U - Night

Software and Pre-installed Apps

The phone comes with Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0 and some pre-installed software. One program is OfficeSuite 5 and it allows you to open documents in Word or PDF format. There is a built-in file browser with cloud storage integration to services like Google Drive and Dropbox.

Battery

Battery-wise, the phone runs on a 1320 mAh battery, which is able to last about a day with features turned on, like 3G and WiFi. Of course, you can always turn off the unnecessary features to further optimize your battery usage and extend the battery life.

Included Accessories

The phone comes with a standard accessory package that includes an A/C adapter, USB cable, headset, and spare cap for the interchangeable appearance (mine comes in black and pink).

Conclusion

After using the phone for a few months, I would definitely recommend the Sony Xperia U. In my experience, the phone has never encountered any serious issues, restarts, application force closes or anything else major along those lines. However, once in a while, the phone seems to lockup or freeze, requires a manual removal of the battery, and then restarting the phone. The restart process usually takes less than 30 seconds. I guess after you install a couple of apps and keep running the apps for days, the limited 512MB memory starts to show its limited capability.

Another downside of the phone is that is has no microSD card slot for memory storage expansion. If you can live with the 8GB internal space, then the storage space would not be a very big issue. Fortunately, the phone does have cloud storage integration, so you won’t need that much memory space anyway.

In summary, the dual-core performance is good and the 5MP camera takes decent photos. The 512 MB RAM may not be sufficient if you plan on running multiple apps simultaneously for extended periods and the phone does not have an expansion slot. Fortunately and best of all, the price is considerably inexpensive. For the price, the phone is a great value compared to other smartphones within the same price range.

All in all, I would give the Sony Xperia U a 4 out of 5 stars. It is an entry-level smartphone and good enough to be your first smartphone without spending too much money.

Rating: 4/5 Stars

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