Sony Xperia 10 II review: An affordable but disappointing wide-screen experience Review

Sony’s 2020 flagship Xperia I II has now been joined by the mid-range Xperia 10 II, which shares its distinctively tall 21:nine aspect ratio display screen. That display screen is a feature across the Xperia selection these days, and is a central factor of the Xperia model.

At £319 (inc. VAT), the Xperia 10 II — which is not presently obtainable in the US — sits in a crowded house. A short while ago we’ve seen two notable new entrants in this price tag bracket, offering significant competitiveness — the OnePlus Nord and the Google Pixel 4a. Other options from the likes of Honor and Xiaomi are snapping at this handset’s heels, too. Can the Xperia 10 II compete?

Past 12 months there ended up a couple of variants of the Xperia 10, and I reviewed the bigger Xperia 10 Furthermore. This 12 months you can find just the a person Xperia 10. It is a tall, slender handset measuring 69mm by 157mm, and is suitably skinny at 8.2mm. It weighs 151g.


The six-inch, 21:nine Xperia 10 II charges £319 (inc. VAT). It runs on the Snapdragon 665 cell platform with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of inner storage.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

All those proportions make this a disheartening telephone for compact-handed people. I could reach correct across the display screen a person-handed, but could not access its entire top with no juggling the telephone about in my palm. That’s compounded by the actuality that the Xperia 10 II has an exceptionally slippery glass back, earning it really feel less than safe in the hand.


The electrical power button (below the quantity rocker) incorporates a fingerprint reader.

Graphic: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet  

Like the front, the back is produced from Gorilla Glass six. The telephone slid about and fell from my armchair on various instances, and whilst I didn’t essentially drop it, there ended up numerous in close proximity to misses. What’s more, the back is super-shiny and attracts fingerprints. It has no redeeming functions except you want to use the back as a mirror, and a scenario is pretty much a prerequisite.

You will find a USB-C port for charging on the bottom edge, and a 3.5mm headset jack on the top rated. The correct edge properties the quantity rocker and the electrical power change, which is a flat lozenge incorporating the fingerprint sensor.

Leading ZDNET Testimonials

You will find no bottom speaker grille, and that is simply because the mono speaker outputs by means of a extended indented panel on the bottom edge of the display screen. This receives more than the perennial difficulty of muffling the seem when keeping the display screen in landscape mode — viewing movie or taking part in games, for instance.

Regretably, Sony hasn’t backed up this arrangement with a respectable speaker. Seem excellent is only ordinary, and that is a authentic shame given that this is a telephone whose display screen proportions make it suitable for media intake and gaming. The tiny indent for the speaker is an absolute fluff magnet. Just after a couple of days in my pocket it looked incredibly untidy — and I never assume my pockets are unusually eye-catching to dust motes.

The Xperia 10 II has an IP65/68 ranking for dust and water resistance, so at minimum the inside of of the telephone must be effectively safeguarded.

The six-inch display screen has a incredibly tall 21:nine aspect ratio and a resolution of two,520 by one,080 pixels (457ppi). There are visible bezels at the top rated and bottom, ensuing in a very low display screen to body ratio of 77.five{fb741301fcc9e6a089210a2d6dd4da375f6d1577f4d7524c5633222b81dec1ca}. The front digicam sits in the higher bezel, proud of the display screen, so at minimum you can find no interruption there.

There are two options for the OLED display screen, First and Common, the latter acquiring a brighter, much more ‘poppy’ color gamut. I desired this significantly of the time. The wide display screen is excellent when you might be seeking at 21:nine movie, but letterboxing is visible with much more common aspect ratios.

Sony presents two computer software tweaks to support people make much more of the display screen when they’re not viewing movie or taking part in games.


Graphic excellent options for the OLED display screen (still left) and Side Perception (correct).

Visuals: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet    

Tap the correct edge of the display screen two times and out pops Side Perception, a miniature shortcuts spot you can populate with your favorite apps. It also presents a ‘one-handed’ option that virtually shrinks the screen’s information down to about three-fifths of its authentic sizing, with huge black borders higher than and to a person side. On the six.five-inch Xperia one this can be useful, but in this article tappables turn into too compact to strike precisely.


Multi-Window: setup (still left) and in motion (correct).

Visuals: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet      

Both Side Perception and an application icon also give you access to Multi-Window, which splits the display screen into two person-sizeable sections that can run apps independently. You will find a collection of apps on a shortcut spot that appears when you bring about Multi-Window, and for velocity you can find also a collection of preset twins you can run with a one faucet. These will comply with your individual utilization sample, so you can get to favourites simply. Multi-Window is effective effectively more than enough, but yet again is hampered by the total display screen sizing, and I uncovered it significantly much more usable on the bigger Xperia one II.


You will find an comprehensive record of apps to decide on from at setup time.

Visuals: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet    

Side Perception and Multi-Window are crucial features of the overlay that Sony sites on top rated of Android 10. The setup approach also presents a complete raft of purposes you can make your mind up to set up or not a person by a person. These include things like numerous from Google (Calculator, Sheets, Docs, Information, Slides), and a complete bunch from Sony (Imaging Edge Cell, AccuWeather,, Amazon, PlayStation App, Information Suite by Sony, Outlook). Fb and Netflix are preinstalled and not detachable.

Obtaining approved all the optional extras I uncovered the 128GB of the inner diminished by 23GB, leaving 105GB no cost for my individual apps and knowledge.

The Xperia 10 II’s Snapdragon 665 chipset is supported by 4GB of RAM. It sent ordinary Geekbench five CPU scores of 229 (one core) and 1189 (multi core). This is shut to the Motorola Moto G8’s 1402 and 312, which shares the identical processor and RAM. Though the Moto G8 has a considerably reduce price tag, it is significantly less complex in the display screen office. This amount of overall performance is, in a natural way, nowhere in close proximity to the major edge for Android handsets, which is presently about 900 and 3300 for one core and multi core respectively.

This is not a 5G handset, but it will accommodate two SIMs if you never mind sacrificing the option of a MicroSD card to increase the inner storage.

SEE: 5G smartphones: A cheat sheet (no cost PDF) (TechRepublic)

The front digicam is an 8MP f/two. device, whilst Sony has opted for a trio of cameras at the back: 12MP f/two. wide angle, 8MP f/two.four telephoto (2x optical zoom) and 8MP f/two.two ultra-wide-angle (120°). The AI quickly detects food stuff pictures and enhances them (so that is excellent if you might be a foodie), and it will change into macro mode if the lens is shut to its topic. I managed some intriguing issue-and-shoot pictures, but was irritated by notable shutter lag, and also by the slowness with which the digicam computer software often altered to my requests. Some of this could be fixable in computer software, but as it stands the issue-and-shoot encounter is below par. That’s doubly irritating as the Xperia one II did so effectively on the digicam front.

The Sony Xperia 10 II has a 3600mAh battery. Underneath the PCMark for Android battery rundown examination it ran for fifteen several hours and 30 minutes. When I questioned the handset to enjoy movie from YouTube for three several hours, it did so dropping just 18{fb741301fcc9e6a089210a2d6dd4da375f6d1577f4d7524c5633222b81dec1ca} from a entire demand. Anecdotally the Xperia 10 II should to get you through a day of mainstream utilization. Disappointingly, despite supporting rapidly charging, Sony can make you obtain its Rapid Charger UCH32C as an optional extra.


Graphic: Sony


As with other Xperia handsets, the 21:nine aspect ratio is the crucial draw in this article. Be well prepared for a appreciable volume of movie letterboxing along with the (instead pleasurable) wide-display screen viewing. You can also count on some usability difficulties navigating the display screen a person-handed, whilst the digicam overall performance is disappointing. Both the OnePlus Nord and Google Pixel 4a are much more high priced and have common aspect ratio screens, but they are worthy of checking out, along with other solutions, as attainable options. 

Modern AND Relevant Written content

Sony Xperia one II evaluate: Cinematic 4K display screen, 5G and much better battery lifetime, but the price tag is large

Sony Xperia one evaluate: Exceptional cinematic 4K display screen, but battery lifetime falls short

OnePlus Nord evaluate: A excellent-worth mid-selection 5G smartphone

Google Pixel 4a evaluate: Excellence at an cost-effective price tag

The greatest inexpensive phones for frugal times: Flagship functions on any spending budget

Go through much more testimonials