Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray Review

  • price

    ₹19,799.00

  • tech rating

    3.2/5

  • user rating

    20.8/5

Sony Ericsson has created a niche for itself in the smartphone arena with their recent Android smartphones. The company recently launched their latest entrant in the popular Xperia range, called the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray. Currently, there is cut-throat competition amongst leading smartphone manufacturers and Android phones are being manufactured at a dime a dozen. But, does the new Xperia Ray pack enough to warrant a buy? Read on to find out.  

 

 

 

On video: Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray

 

 

 

Design and Build Quality 

The Xperia Ray has a 3.3-inch screen and weighs 100 grams and cannot be counted as a big phone by any means. It looks sleek with the matte finish on the sides and back and the embossed Xperia logo. The all-glass screen in the front with an arc at the top and the bottom add to the stylish look as well. The top consists of the power button, along with the headphone jack that slightly protrudes from the body. The right consists of the volume rocker, while the microUSB slot is located to the left. Two capacitive buttons along with the home button are situated under the 3.3-inch Bravia Mobile engine LED-backlit LCD display that has a resolution of 480 x 854 pixels. 

The Xperia Ray

Volume rocker switch could have been a little bigger

 

 

The tactile feedback of the buttons is good, but as a personal preference, the volume rocker button could have been a little bigger. The camera and single LED flash on the back have a silver border to them that adds to the look. A particular thing to notice is that the SIM card slot and microSD card slot are housed under the battery, so there’s no hot-swap feature available for changing memory cards. 

 

Overall, the Xperia Ray is easy to hold in your hand. It isn’t on the heavier side at all and definitely gives a feeling of superior design and build. 

 

Features and Performance

Interface

The smartphone is powered by a 1GHz Scorpion processor with an Adreno 205 GPU, an MSM8255 Snapdragon chipset and runs on the Android 2.3.3 OS. Running on top is SE’s stock Timescape UI that displays Facebook, Twitter and other extensions as tiles that you can scroll through on your home screen. It looks good, just like on the earlier devices, but it's pretty average, as far as functionality is concerned. The screen response is quick and doesn't have any lag, whatsoever. 

Sleek and stylish body

Sleek and stylish body

 

 

Sony has also included a few themes and skins, but they've kept them to a minimum, which is good with all the bloatware that manufacturers have been putting these days on their devices. Xperia Hot Shots, the UEFA widget, Wisepilot and Touchnote are few of the new apps that come bundled with the device. Home screen widgets are standard with toggle switches for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Silent mode and Brightness along with the Timescape widget, Google search and weather icon. The interface is simple, but swift, while the navigation is effortless.  

 

Media

The Xperia Ray continues to live up to the merits of the music player that the previous versions had and it’s fair to say that it doesn’t disappoint. MP3, eAAC+ and WAV are supported out-of-the-box, as far as audio is concerned and video format support is for MP4, H.263 and H.264. Those looking for playback for other formats will require to download third party apps from the market. SRS WOW enhancements haven’t been included, but irrespective of that, the sound is loud and clear. The music player has a nice little feature, which changes the background colour lighting depending upon the album art, which adds up to the looks. There’s an instant 'like' button next to the song title that directly connects to your Facebook likes. The infinity button helps find music videos, or karaoke videos on YouTube, search artist information on Wikipedia and lyrics on Google. It works quite well and might come handy for those instant karaoke music sessions. 

The music player

The music player

 

 

The speakers are based on Sony’s xLOUD audio filter technology and the sound from them is crisp and clear. However, the bundled headphones aren’t the best and they have a lot of audio leakage. For a better music experience, we’d recommend you purchase another pair of headphones. 

Connectivity

The device is 3G capable, like most other devices in the market. Other connectivity features include Wi-Fi with hotspot capability, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP and EDR, microUSB 2.0 and the basic GPRS/EDGE connectivity. The device is DLNA-enabled as well which allows it to wirelessly stream music and videos to other DLNA devices. However, neither NFC support nor USB on-the-go is present on the device and while we’re at it, we'll just mention that Bluetooth 3.0 would have been a good addition, as well.  

Gallery

Power button and headphone jack on the top, two capacitive buttons and home button below the display

 

 

Misc. Features

Besides the stock Google maps, Gmail and navigation apps, a data monitor app is pre-installed, which is quite handy, if you’re on 3G and wish to know your current data usage. An Adobe Reader app is bundled, along with the Sony update center app and a LiveWare manager that shows the current connected ports in the device. Besides this, the basic alarm clock, calendar, calculator and sound recorder apps come pre-loaded. Surprisingly, the phone doesn’t come with any pre-loaded games. 

The timescape UI

The timescape UI

 

 

Camera

The Ray has an eight megapixel rear camera with Sony’s Exmor R CMOS sensor with auto-focus and an LED flash. The smartphone doesn’t have any dedicated camera button and you might have that odd moment of frustration when the camera doesn’t recognize your touch and doesn’t click. A single click adjusts the focus, following which the camera snaps a picture. But, for those times when you’re on a picture clicking spree, the responsiveness is a little slow, due to the touch-to-focus-and-click mode. The front VGA camera is decent and performs well during video chatting sessions or whilst clicking self-portrait pictures. 

Pictures appear bright on the Bravia Mobile engine

Pictures appear bright on the Bravia Mobile engine

 

 

Video shooting is up to 720p and it does perform quite well. There’s very little jitter and shooting videos is quite smooth. Auto capturing mode for image shots does all the dirty work for you, whereas the normal capturing mode for both photo, as well as video shooting has image stabilization options, metering, white balance and focus mode options. The flash is quite powerful and images in low-light conditions are captured pretty well. 

 

Battery Life 

The Xperia Ray comes with a 1500 mAh Lithium-ion battery. In our battery test, the battery exhausted itself after three hours of video, two hours of music playback, two hours of streaming and one and a half hour of calls, which brings it to a total of 8 hours 30 minutes. Normal usage lasts around one and a half day on a single charge and at optimum brightness, which is quite good.

The Xperia Ray

A 3.3-inch screen smartphone at Rs. 20,000?

 

 

Verdict

The Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray is priced at Rs. 20,000. With that price, it competes with the likes of the Google Nexus S and the LG Optimus Black and the HTC Desire S. The eight megapixel camera is brilliant, but the smaller 3.3-inch screen size may not appeal to everyone and as mentioned earlier, the smaller keyboard will take some time to get used to. Also, 1080p recording isn’t present and the internal memory is a mere 1GB, out of which only 300 MB is available to users. Yes, the smartphone performs pretty well with whatever features it has and has the Bravia Mobile engine, too, but choosing this phone over the other ones currently in the market will be more due to personal taste and choice than for the features it possesses. 


Specifications

Facebook lives inside Xperia Just log in once and stay connected! Now Xperia takes smartphones to a new level. You will be able to comment, like and discover all the photos, videos and apps, you and your friends share on Facebook. Everything straight from your Xperia smartphone. Slim but strong Slim, but oh so fast and powerful. Xperia™ ray comes with a responsive touchscreen and a high capacity battery. Watch videos, talk to friends and listen to music as long as you want. Phone content. On your TV via Wi-Fi and DLNA Show videos, photos and complete slideshows stored on your phone on your DLNA TV. It’s now easier than ever – no cables or over-complicated setup procedures needed. Just connect your Xperia™ ray and your TV to the same wireless network. Then start the show from your phone. USB host Turn your Xperia™ ray phone into a PC or games machine. Pop it into LiveDock™, connect a USB keyboard, mouse or gamepad via the USB port, and work – or play away. All day. See it. Catch it. Send it. Share that cool game scene. Or show off that text string. Just push the power off button then press “screen capture” and share your screen with your mates, or post it on your favourite social network site. Find the way - aGPS You'll never get lost again. Your phone has built-in aGPS. Location-based services like Google Maps™ and Wisepilot help you find the way to your destination. Or add location info to your images - use the geo-tagging function.

Display

Form Factor Bar
Screen Type LED-backlit LCD, capacitive touchscreen
Screen Size 3.3 inches (~297 ppi pixel density)
Screen Resolution 854 x 480
Number of Colours 16M

Processor

Processor Scorpion
Speed 1GHz

Memory

Internal Memory 4GB (Up to 300MB free, 512MB RAM
Extendable Memory microSD, up to 32GB

Camera Features

Sensor Resolution 8MP, 3264x2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash
Features Geo-tagging, Face detection, Smile detection, Auto focus
Digital Zoom 16x
Video resolution / frame rate 1280 x 720
Video Recording HD video recording
Front facing camera Yes

General Features

OS Android
Version 2.3
FM Radio Yes
Bluetooth Features Yes, with A2DP
Messaging SMS, Conversations, Predictive text input, MMS, Google mail, Instant messaging
GPS Yes, with A-GPS support
USB Connector Yes, MicroUSB
Browser Android Browser
Available Colours Gold, Black, Pink, White

Carrier Networks

2G GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G HSDPA 850 / 1900 / 2100

Data

GPRS Yes
EGPRS or EDGE Yes
WiFi Yes

Body

Dimensions 53 x 9.4 x 110 mm
Weight 100

Sound

Media Player Music formats: MP3, AAC
Alert Tone Vibration, MP3
Speakerphone Yes
Audio connector 3.5mm

Battery

Type Li-Ion
Capacity 1500
Talk Time with Standard Battery Up to 6 h 50 min (2G) / Up to 7 h (3G)
Standby Time with Standard Battery Up to 430 h (2G) / Up to 440 h (3G)

Miscellaneous Features

Built in Applications Twitter|#|Google Talk|#|Facebook|#|Alarm clock|#|Google Calendar|#|Calculator|#|Flight mode|#|YouTube|#|Noise Shield|#|Video streaming|#|Google Voice Search|#|Mobile BRAVIA Engine

After Sales Service

Warranty Period 1

Price

Warranty Period 1