After using the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact for over 18months I have to say I am underwhelmed by it. At the time of purchase there were no good flagship 5inch screens, the sweet spot for me that has a decent size screen versus hand holdability. So I opted to go smaller.
The smaller screen would have been acceptable if a large chunk of the lower screen was not obliterated by the onscreen buttons. I would estimate the 4.6 screen is actually 4.5 or even slightly less on day to day use due to these buttons. This makes the screen rather tight in my opnion for day to day use. The previous and best phone I have ever owned the HTC one with its 4.7 inch screen and no on screen buttons was noticably larger.
The other major gripe I have with the Sony was the build quality. This phone is supposed to be waterproof. After using the charging flap a few times it now never fits snuggly back into the recess it came from. Furthermore the top right of the screen has come away three times. I have sent it in for repair under warranty twice and will be sending it in yet again. The phone is averaging 6months each time before this fault occurs. I would not want to put this phone anywhere near water with this poor build quality.
The next gripe is the screen. Its soooo dull. Even on maximum brightness it does not look anywhere near as bright as a Moto G or Moto E on half their brightness. This means its totally rubbish in bright sunlight and having it on maximum brightness all the time drains the battery quickly. This is then compounded by the useless Android 6 update as noted below.
Then the sound from the speakers is not that great. Thankfully as I use headphones most of the time this is not so much of an issue. But the sound from the headphones is alright but did not come close to the HTC One.
Then my last major gripe is the camera. The HTC Megasuperulta pixel camera was all right and took reasonable pictures. The Sony was tauted as being amazing. Well it isn’t. It takes pictures but cannot handle dull or low light situations very well. It also takes out of balance white level pictures, offers lots of glare and all lights have chronic halos.
The operating system skin by Sony is passable and isn’t as in your face as the HTC or Samsung ones but feels unpolished.
Then lets move onto updates. Sony realeased Marshmallow without their proprietary battery saving technology. This meant I had a noticable drop in battery life since the update to Android 6. The battery used to last two days light use and one day heavy use well into the evening. Now it lasts 1 and half days on a good run and usually conks out after a day and a day of heavy use requires switching into extreme power saving to keep it going.
Sony did provide a token update on this but it did not offer the customisation prior to marshmallow. So Sony in my opnion failed to produce an update that carried on one of the reasons for buying the phone.
So I got the phone for camera, battery life and pocketability. Only one of those met expectations but due to build quality I think this phone is decidably underwleming.
This phone whilst two years on (allegedly) from the HTC One and (allegedly) a flagship feels very much like a mid to low end phone. Sony will not be getting repeat custom from me again for phones as this phone has not been worth the money they charged for it.
Oh well only 6months left of this phone…..