Sony’s Xperia Z1 Compact is one of the best Android smartphones around, and in the golden age of phablets, that dinky 4.3-inch screen also makes it one of the most compact. But how does it stack up against that other awesome mini mobile, the iPhone 5s?
The Sony Xperia Z1 and iPhone are both highly portable, but sport very different designs, with Sony’s baby rocking a plastic frame in a range of cool colours, and Apple’s iPhone sticking with the traditional brushed metal finish. Both phones look fantastic, but the Xperia is fully waterproof, so a definite choice if your mobile often tumbles into the toilet - the iPhone is sadly rather more fragile. Security-conscious users will love the iPhone 5s’ fingerprint scanner, of course, which provides an alternative means of unlocking your phone.
Both the Xperia and the iPhone feature small screens, with the Sony a mite larger at 4.3-inches, compared to the Apple’s 4-incher. The Xperia’s 720p HD display is a tiny bit sharper than the iPhone’s Retina display, but the difference really is negligible. Both screens boast vibrant colours and fantastic viewing angles thanks to the IPS technology, and they’re bright enough to counter harsh glare.
Performance and battery life
When it comes to performance, there’s again very little between these handsets. The iPhone 5s boasts Apple’s latest A7 processor, the first smartphone chip to use 64-bit architecture. The Xperia may not boast the same, but the Snapdragon 800 processor makes it one of the nippiest Androids around, and both phones comfortably handle the latest games. You should also enjoy well over a day’s use between charges, whichever handset you choose.
One notable difference is the storage space, as the Xperia comes with just 16GB, while the iPhone 5s ranges up to 128GB. However, unlike the Apple, the Sony has a microSD slot, so you can add up to 64GB using a memory card.
These days it’s essential to have a good camera, and the iPhone 5s packs a capable 8-megapixel iSight lens which takes sharp, realistic pictures. Meanwhile, Sony has crammed an incredible 20-megapixel camera sensor into the Xperia. The Superior Auto mode is one of the best around, adapting well to all kinds of conditions, and you get some cool gimmicks and features thrown in, which are bound to entertain younger users. However, the iPhone does trump it with the excellent slow-motion tool, which can be added retrospectively to your videos.
Both the Xperia Z1 Compact and the iPhone 5s are best-in-class mini handsets, which are comfortable to clutch and pack excellent performance and features. If you have no preference between iOS and Android, the deciding factor is likely to be the Xperia’s waterproof design and excellent 20-megapixel camera.
So if you're not an iPhone addict is the Z1 Compact an attractive piece of kit? Tell us what you think of these two handsets in the comments below.