Sony Xperia M review – 1GHz dual core with NFC and multicolored LED

Sony Xperia M sports a 4 inch screen with FWVGA resolution. It supports a single SIM (micro SIM slot), runs on Android 4.1 with 1GB RAM and 4GB storage. Also includes a 5MP rear AF camera, NFC and multicolored LED illumination. The handset is priced at under Rs. 13,500. Dual SIM Xperia M is also available.

Box Pack
it’s a small pack that comes loaded with the M handset, battery of 1700 mAh capacity, power adapter, data cable, earphone, SAR information booklet, SONY warranty certificate and start up / user guide.

Design, Display and OS
The handset is of a smaller size available in 4 different colors. Sony Xperia M weight is just 114 grams with battery, thickness is 9.33mm, breadth is 61.71mm and length is 123.77mm. The handset has got a unique slim design and comes with a bigger (SONY style power) button; there is volume rockers plus a dedicated camera button all of these placed on the right side. On the top there is 3.5mm audio jack and on the right side you will find the micro USB port.

There are no physically dedicated buttons on the front bottom; in fact that area is taken up by a multicolored LED that lightens up showing off various colors (check the video review). You can setup the LED light  – example for incoming SMS’s you can set it to red color and for incoming call you can set it to green color. When you are viewing images using the image gallery the LED lightens up and based on the image the light color changes – if you are viewing an image with more Red color in it – the LED light goes red.

sony xperia m box pack

The 4 inch TFT screen supports 854×480 pixels resolution and because there is no physical navigational buttons some of the area is taken up by on-screen buttons and what you get is 782×480 pixels resolution. The color reproduction is good and touch is smooth and responsive.

This handset runs on Android 4.1.2 OS with SONY customized user interface. The Sony Xperia M comes with Light, Proximity, Accelerometer and magnetic sensors.

sony xperia m handson

Memory and Storage
Of the 4GB internal storage 2GB is assigned of apps of which 1.5GB is available and of the 1GB RAM you get 512MB free. There is micro SD card slot that supports up to 32GB. Unfortunately you cannot install or move apps on external storage.

Inside the Hood and Benchmark
The Xperia M is powered by dual core MSM8227 chipset (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 – Krait architecture) clocked at 972MHz. The GPU is Adreno 305.

Benchmark scores

  • Quadrant Benchmark : 4226.
  • Antutu Benchmark : 11168.
  • Vellamo Benchmark : HTML5 – 1817, Metal – 429.
  • Nenamark2 : 64.0fps.
  • Epic Citadel : 54.8fps (High Performance mode) and 42.8fps (Ultra High Quality mode).
  • Multi Touch : 5 point Multi Touch.

5MP camera and front VGA camera
Still image (long shot) looks good, but close-ups are not that sharp. I was expecting much more from the SONY brand. There is 5MP rear camera with LED flash and VGA front camera. The video output (720p @ 29fps) is also okay not really that great, it seems the handset is not able to focus close-up object properly. You can click still images while the video recording is on. There are many other options including image stabilization.

sony xperia m 5MP camera

Gaming
The benchmark scores especially the FPS looks really good, however you cannot install games on external storage. This means you hardly get 1.5GB of space that too on the first boot without any user apps installed, this is not enough for many high end games like MC4 etc. I tried the Dead Trigger game that no doubt worked pretty well.

Entertainment
This handset cannot play 1080p videos, in S/W mode the audio is out of sync and H/W mode doesn’t work. However 720p videos work with ease in both S/W and H/W mode.

Others
3G, Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth worked without any issues. Got the GPS lock within 8 seconds. Sound is loud, clear and much better (no doubt its SONY). The Xperia M also comes with built in FM, NFC and DLNA. Wi-Fi signal is very strong.

sony xperia m review

1700 mAh battery
According to Sony the battery gives a talktime of up to 9 hours on 3G networks. I played Dead Trigger game on Sony Xperia M for about 16 minutes and battery level dropped by 6% the max temperature was 38 degrees.

Sony Xperia M verdict
This handset comes with some decent features, benchmark is impressive considering the hardware that it houses. The colorful LED light looks good but users might get bored pretty soon. The price of under Rs. 13,290 though seems good considering the SONY brand with NFC included, however there are some feature that are not at par like the camera output, cannot play FHD videos etc. The SONY Xperia M will not impress those who really don’t care about the brand.

Image gallery

Sample images shot using Xperia M handset

Sony Xperia M unboxing and review video

720p video shot using the M handset


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