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Sony Xperia Z4 Release Date

“Earlier this week,” reports G For Games, “the Japanese media apparently passed along a very interesting report concerning Sony’s near-future plans. According to these sources, Sony will unveil a new Xperia smartphone in Japan, no later than April 20. While there’s no concrete evidence to suggest that the mysterious device will be the Xperia Z4, it’s difficult not to take this possibility in account given the amount of Xperia Z4-related leaks that emerged lately, and also because the Z4 is a long-time coming after all.”

Android Origin suggests Sony is working on an Xperia Z4, Xperia Z4 Compact, Xperia Z4 Ultra and Xperia Z4 Tablet ready for release in 2015, indicating the company is keen on expanding its product portfolio in the New Year with phablets, smartphones and smaller, but equally powerful phones for those that simply don’t want a device with a 5+in display. 

Major Sony Leak Apparently Reveals All About The Xperia Z4

Well this is a surprising turn of events, it seems WikiLeaks got hold of thousands of internal Sony documents and published them on the web yesterday. Some enterprising types have been sifting through said data and discovered some interesting titbits regarding the Xperia Z4 flagship. Twitter source @XperiaLeak and fan site Esato uncovered some concept renders of what the device may end up looking like.

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The leak interestingly comes around the same time as Twitter source @ViziLeaks has been claiming Sony will use the Xperia Z4 to introduce an entirely new metal build, complete with a power key featuring a fingerprint scanner – this does actually fit almost exactly with the renders we’re now seeing, and ViziLeaks has dipped in to say that the renders are accurate.

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But there’s more. The documents talk of “seamless” design, 2.5D glass displays (iPhone/Galaxy Note 4 style) and a new “Mono” UI.

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Sony Xperia Z4 Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 Chip Seemingly Confirmed

Qualcomm’s done something we’ve seen happen a fair bit in the past; while waxing lyrical in an announcement about its latest Snapdragon 810 chip, the company dropped a few names for manufacturers set to use its hardware in upcoming devices. However, interestingly rather than being “outed” by Qualcomm, Sony got involved itself with senior VP of Sony Mobile, Gen Tsuchikawa, talking a bit about how it will use the chip in its upcoming devices. Of course it didn’t name-drop the Xperia Z4, but it doesn’t take a genius to work out what’s afoot here.

“Whether it’s long-lasting battery life, watching the latest movies or enjoying music in Hi-Res Audio quality, our customers are increasingly demanding more from their Xperia device to deliver the latest content and entertainment experiences,” he said. “We’re excited about the new capabilities of the Snapdragon 810 processor and are looking forward to working with Qualcomm Technologies as we bring new Xperia products to consumers later this year.”

The Xperia Z4 has now been spotted in a set of benchmark results, apparently cementing the Snapdragon 810 chipset rumours. The results popped up via the GFXBench database showing the Sony E6553. According to PhoneArena, the codename likely hints at the model being the Xperia Z4 – the Z3 was codenamed D6603, while the Xperia Z was C6603. On top of that it has a hardware profile which looks very flagship-worthy, including the rumoured Snapdragon 810 octa-core chip and 3GB of RAM. Onboard storage appears to be 32GB with 23GB user-accessible.

Sony Xperia Z4 Spotted In FCC Certification?

We don’t yet have a release date for the Xperia Z4 smartphone. It was expected to break cover at MWC 2015 after having allegedly been showcased in private to Sony partners at CES in January, but MWC has been and gone with no sign of a new handset. Sony did unveil its Xperia Tablet Z4, however, and you can find our first look here: Sony Xperia Tablet Z4 Review: Hands On.

However, there may be a glimmer of hope yet. According to a listing on the FCC’s official database, it just passed a certification for a Sony phone designated as the PM-0780. It’s not a dead cert that this is the Xperia Z4 flagship, of course, but it does pack all the LTE bands you’d expect from a high tier device, and it doesn’t have a removable battery pack – usually a sign of unibody, typically associated with premium, high end handsets. There are also six model variants which are not very different in terms of hardware and therefore appear to be different US carrier models, again, typical of a flagship. The listing reveals the device size as closely matching  both the current Xperia Z3 and rumours of the Z4 at 146x73mm

Sony Xperia Z4 Design & Display

An alleged press render has leaked showing what’s believed to be the Xperia Z4. The image appeared on the Mobile Leaks blog, and while we can only see the front of the device it does appear that little has changed in terms of overal design from the Xperia Z3.

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The GFXBench leak we detailed above in the processor section also reveals the display size and resolution for the Xperia Z4; a 5.1in touchscreen at 1920 x 1080p full HD.

Sources claim the next generation smartphone will have a 5.5in display with a 1440 x 2560 Quad HD resolution. This information should be taken with a big pinch of salt, however, as nothing has been confirmed by the company. It’s also worth noting that Sony decided to keep the Xperia Z3 display as a 1080p setup in order to make the handset more power efficient –– a ploy that worked BIG TIME, as the Xperia Z3’s battery is bloody insane. Having said that, QHD is fast becoming the norm inside the Android space. So, as always, never say never. 

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According to a leak from Android Origin the Xperia Z4 will be much the same as the Xperia Z3 with respect to design. There will be refinements, however, such as Qi wireless charging and improved water-proofing that will see those annoying little flaps ditched in favour of something a lot more practical, meaning you’ll still get all that IP68 dust and waterproof protection just without all those annoying and easy-to-break rubber flaps.

Images that claim to show the Sony Xperia Z4’s front fascia, complete with LCD digitizer panel, popped up the Future Supplier blog and show the Xperia Z4 panel alongside the current Z3 panel. Earlier rumours suggested the Z4 would feature an expanded 5.5in QHD display for the Z4, but seeing it next to the current Z3 below suggests otherwise. 

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A new leak has emerged apparently showing the Xperia Z4 metal bodyshell, it’s the same source as the previous leak; Future Supplier, and once again compares the Xperia Z4 parts with those of the Xperia Z3. What’s the takeaway from these images? Well for starters Sony seems determined to thin down each successive device and the Xperia Z4 appears to be considerably slimmer than its predecessor: about 6.3mm, according to the source, making it the thinnest device around.

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However, the thinner bodywork appears to be missing a microSD slot, which could be a pain for those fond of external storage. We can see the microUSB port is not covered by a flap, but this doesn’t rule out waterproofing as the Z4 Tablet also lacks a flap for the USB port and still has full waterproofing certification – the similarity in design here also supports the legitimacy of this leak.

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Is It 5.4in Or 5.2in; QHD or 1080p?

A new report from Sony insiders suggests there will in fact be a 5.2in 1080p display in the Xperia Z4. First up a source contacted Phone Arena after being aggravated by rumours of a 5.4in Quad HD Triluminos display. The update included a spelling mistake which meant Phone Arena was a little unsure about the news and didn’t report it – but now a new source has provided further evidence it’ll be a 5.2in display. 

The second source also leaked some iPhone 6 schematics earlier in 2014 proving they have some impressive connections. The source leaked some screenshots from computers in the Sony labs and is shows there will be a 5.2in diagonal display much like there was on the Xperia Z3.

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At present there are two possibilities regarding the Xperia Z4’s display: it’ll either be a QHD setup similar to Google’s Nexus 6, though likely based around Sony’s Triluminos technology, or a revamped 1080p panel similar to what shipped aboard the Xperia Z3. 

We’ve tested a bunch of QHD handsets this year and found, for the most part, that even with HUGE battery cells in place performance just isn’t as good as similarly specced 1080p smartphones. In our Nexus 6 review, we pointed out how the iPhone 6 Plus’ performance far exceeds what you get with the Nexus 6, a handset which has a significantly larger 3220mAh battery inside. 

We might be alone in this but we’re hoping Sony sticks to its guns and, rather than simply keeping up with the Jones, focuses instead on improving the actual screen technology rather than simply bumping the pixel count. The difference in everyday contexts between QHD and 1080p just isn’t all that compelling –– people often make the same case for 1080p OLED TVs vs. 4K LED ones. 

Sony Xperia Z4 Camera

A new image has leaked online and it is claimed it has been snapped by none other than the Xperia Z4 smartphone. The image appeared on Esato.com with exif data showing a 20.7MP sensor and the device in question labelled as the Sony E6553 – a name we’ve previously seen associated with the Xperia Z4.

As you can see, the image quality is decent, but not markedly above the current Xperia Z3.

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A few more images have emerged from the same source. They don’t reveal much new information but do show more of what the camera is capable of:

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Once again, the GFXBench leak we mentioned near the top of this article reveals some nice details about the camera. It’s a 20MP shooter with full HD video, although curously it does not appear to support HDR. Meanwhile the front-facing secondary is a 5MP sensor

Sony has made quite a few refinements to its Exmor sensor over the years, steadily improving performance with each new addition to its Xperia line. The company has officially announced a 21MP IMX230 sensor featuring “plane phase detection”, something which apparently hasn’t been implemented in a phone camera before. 

Photography aficionados may be familiar with the technology though as it’s typically seen in interchangeable-lens cameras. In terms of what it’s useful for, the tech is allegedly ideal for fast tracking of moving objects without blur as it divides the scene into 192 autofocus points which can easily managed by the camera’s sensor. 

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Of course Sony has said nada about whether this tech will appear inside the Xperia Z4 specifically, but being a flagship device it should be sporting the best of the best. And, what’s more, Sony says it expects the sensor tech to be in mass production by April 2015. 

The company is also releasing a 16MP sensor using the same tech.

On top of this, it’ll also grant real-time HDR video and images in resolutions up to 4K.

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Of course Sony has said nada about whether this tech will appear inside the Xperia Z4 specifically, but being a flagship device it should be sporting the best of the best. And, what’s more, Sony says it expects the sensor tech to be in mass production by April 2015.

The company is also releasing a 16MP sensor using the same tech.

Xperia Z4 Gets Certified: Appears At FCC & Japanese Communication Ministry

So it seems the rumoured Sony Xperia Z4 might be as close to launch as murmurings previously suggested – the handset has appeared in certification documents at both the US FCC (as reported by Xperia Blog) and Japan’s equivalent body (reported by BlogofMobile).

The Japanese Communication Ministry has certified three variants, one for each major carrier (NTT DoCoMo, KDDI, and SoftBank), each with full LTE and VoLTE support, as well as Wi-Fi.

Meanwhile in the US, the device spotted at the FCC hasn’t been confirmed as the Xperia Z4, it is simply an “unidentified” Sony handset. The only things known are that it supports a range of LTE bands and has a couple of code numbers:  PM-0850-BV and PY7-PM0850, while the firmware is listed as 25.0.A.0.33. None of this means anything in isolation and in no way confirms it’s the Xperia Z4, but even so, if the handset is due to show at MWC it would make sense for it to be doing the rounds at certification bodies right now.

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