And the most overlooked company of the year goes to… SonyAnna Scantlin - Contributing Editor
Today I was doing some research on the new Sony Xperia Z and ZL that are coming out this year, and I came across one of their advertisements for the devices. The advertisement actually brings some valid points without using many words, but instead images of familiar Sony products throughout time. At the end you hear one phrase:
“Sony has always worked to bring you new experiences and now you can enjoy the best of Sony in a smartphone.”
That’s when I started realizing that I have been completely overlooking Sony and their accomplishments.
I’ve had a Sony Walkman (tape and CD player), a Playstation (1, 2, and 3), and even a Sony camcorder. Yet, how easily some of these things were replaced when something huge like the iPod came along and completely outdated the Walkman, and smartphones were the new camcorders. While Sony didn’t completely drop from the market and they did make mobile devices it was clearly a little too late as Apple had already dominated the market with their high-end products. Now that Apple is without Jobs and their stock prices are beginning to drop I feel like Sony might be able to make a comeback and take the number one spot.
While Samsung is clearly winning the smartphone race right now with their successful sales of the Galaxy Note II and Galaxy S III (and soon the Galaxy S IV) there’s no mistaking that while the product itself is worthy of praise, the materials Samsung has decided to use to make their products are lacking when it comes to a solid, premium feel. The cheap plastic that embellishes the back of Samsung’s devices is one thing that many people wish they could change about the Galaxy products. One of the reasons Apple products fare so well is that they usually feature beautiful housing. With the exception of the iPhone 3G and 3GS, the iPhone has featured either aluminum or glass finishes on the backs. Despite the fact that the glass finish on the back of the iPhone 4 and 4S certainly makes the device more prone to breakage, generally speaking glass is associated with elegance and it does give the phone a more expensive feel to it. From the looks of it, Sony aims to gives users an experience that embraces both premium software and housing so consumers get the best of both worlds.
Features also play a key part in Sony’s hopeful success with their new smartphones. In the same advertisement video towards the end, the scene cuts from showing you previous Sony products to the products they want you to focus on now – the Sony Xperia Z and ZL. The phone is being used in the Indian festival of colors, also known as Holi. The phone is ideal for an event such as this because as it shows, colors made out of dust and water are thrown around freely and definitely puts your phone (which you are likely to use as a camera) at considerable risk for liquid damage. However, as it seems nobody is really worried about how the Xperia Z and ZL will fare as the woman at the end has no problem dumping an entire cup of water right on top of the device and her husband or boyfriend seems to be just peachy with it as they laugh together about the danger they’re potentially putting the device in. Would I suggest doing this just for the heck of it? No way. But it is nice to know that companies like Sony are taking waterproofing more seriously now and you can be a little more hopeful of your smartphone’s survivability during those frightening moments where you get caught outside in a rain storm or your phone runs through the wash once or twice.
I really dig the design of the new Xperia devices from Sony, and the specs are certainly considered competitive with other anticipated devices that are coming out this year. My fear is that Sony will keep being overlooked in favor of companies like Samsung or Apple, but my hope is that these devices will give Sony a fighting chance to emerge from the ashes of their past… kind of like the phoenix of the mobile world. A bit too dramatic? I think so too. Basically I just hope this does something for Sony, because I think they deserve some recognition for it.
What do you think readers? Were you ever a fan of Sony products and then dropped off the wagon for something better? What are your thoughts on the Sony Xperia Z and ZL?
Image via Sony