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Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra vs Xperia XA1 Ultra: An in-house battle

19 January 2018 5

Recently the Japanese giant announced their latest mid-range offering XA2 and XA2 Ultra at this year CES 2018 show. Undoubtedly the one of the prominent stars of this year show were XA2 and XA2 Ultra. Both the devices are bringing the Sony's traditional Omni Balance design with few refinements which put it somewhat in futuristic design class with an edge-to-edge display. The XA2 series just goes up for pre-orders in the European region and the company already confirmed its arrival for most of the regions.

Whenever a new smartphone is announced everyone is keen to know how well it competes against its competitors, same is the case with the latest XA2 and XA2 Ultra. We already compared both the devices against couple of competitors as well as have a detailed look at how latest XA2 is different from the predecessor XA1. Today we will compare the latest XA2 Ultra against the predecessor XA2 to give our readers a pretty good idea about in what aspects the successor variant is different and where it takes to lead.

We are pretty much hopeful this comparison will certainly help you better decide whether you should upgrade to the latest XA2 Ultra or not. This year XA2 Ultra is the company's first smartphone with dual selfie camera setup. Let's have a look at what new XA2 Ultra is bringing on board to lure customers. The XA2 Ultra from Sony meant to attract those buyers who want a large display mid-ranger at affordable pricing, the device brings a number of perks to attract mid-range buyers. Starting with the design of both the devices.

80 x 163 x 9.5 mm
6 inches - 1920x1080 px
79 x 165 x 8.1 mm
6 inches - 1920x1080 px
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Design

In last year or so we have seen smartphone manufacturers are adopting the bezel-less trend. So far almost all OEMs have at least one bezel-less smartphone with 2:1 display, however, Sony is amongst those who yet to adopt the futuristic design in favor of traditional design. Sony's first smartphones of 2018 still have the classic metal slab design with 16:9 aspect ratio display. The company brought few changes in classic design still it is not drastically different from the predecessors. The latest XA2 Ultra comes with slightly trimmed bezels on top and bottom which makes the traditional design more striking.

The fingerprint scanner on the XA2 Ultra is one of the prominent change in design. The XA1 Ultra fingerprint scanner lacks fingerprint scanner but that's not the case with the XA2 Ultra instead it has the scanner on the rear side in the center below the camera module.

As far as build quality is a concern, the company upgraded it as well. The XA1 Ultra was featuring a metal chassis with the plastic rear body but for this year XA2 Ultra the company brought premium metal construction with chamfered edges makes it more attractive and premium than its predecessor. There are few aspects which are similar to both the devices like display and screen resolution.

Thanks to slightly upgraded design the XA2 Ultra doesn't look identical to its predecessor. The XA2 Ultra dimensions are 163 x 80 x 9.5 mm and it weighs 221 grams. On the other hand, the XA1 Ultra is slightly larger at 165 x 79 x 8.1 mm still it is significantly slimmer than XA2 Ultra also weighs less at 188 grams.

Display

As I mentioned above despite the fact both the devices have different design still the display on both the devices remain same. Both XA1 Ultra and XA2 Ultra feature 6-inches display. The display on both the devices is IPS LCD display with an aspect ratio of 16:9. The pixels density of both the devices is 367 pixels-per-inch. The Corning Gorilla Glass is protecting the display on both the devices to avoid damage in case of accidental drops.

The display screen quality on both the devices remains same as the company didn't upgrade the tech and resolution. It's pretty much standard that most of the mid-range smartphone has Full HD panels with pixels density above 400, the reason behind low pixels density is a giant display of XA1 Ultra and XA2 Ultra. So if you are looking for any change in this section, you will disappoint to read it remains similar to last year.

Hardware

This year Sony also upgraded in the hardware department, the upgraded is not traditional chipset upgrade instead the Sony opted Qualcomm's chipset for this year mid-range instead of MediaTek SoCs. The last year XA1 Ultra was powered up the MediaTek MT6757 SoC. Its an Octa-core chipset with the first quad of Cortex-A53 cores clocking at 2.3Ghz whereas the other quad is Cortex-A53 chipset clocking at 1.6Ghz. The Octa-core SoC is accompained with 4GB RAM. The base variant has 32GB storage whereas the top-tier variant has 64GB memory. Both the variants storage are further expandable via MicroSD card. The Mali-T880MP2 is on board as Graphics Processing unit.

The XA2 Ultra is running on the Qualcomm's Octa-core Snapdragon 630 chipset. This chipset first quad Cortex-A53 is clocking at 2.2Ghz whereas the clocking speed of other quad Cortex-A53 is 1.8Ghz. The Adreno 508 is on board as GPU. The chipset comes with 4GB RAM and 32GB built-in storage. The top-tier variant has 64GB memory. The storage is also further expandable via MicroSD card.

In terms of performance, the XA2 Ultra takes lead being the latest smartphone with upgraded Qualcomm's chipset under the hood. If you are looking for a solid performing mid-ranger both the device are capable enough to handle your daily tasks.

Specs Xperia XA2 Ultra Xperia XA1 Ultra
Display 6.0-inches 6.0-inches
Screen resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels 1920 x 1080 pixels
Chipset Helio P20 SoC Snapdragon 630
RAM 4GB 4GB
Storage 32GB Expandable via MicroSD 32GB Expandable via MicroSD
Rear camera 23MP 23MP
Front camera 16MP+8MP 16MP
Battery 3,580mAh 2,700mAh
USB Type-C Type-C
3.5mm headphone jack Yes Yes
OS Android Oreo Android Nougat

Battery

This year's XA2 Ultra is thicker than its predecessor. One of the reasons behind thickness is larger battery cell. If you are not happy with the battery life of XA1 Ultra Sony heard the problem and upgraded XA2 Ultra with a larger battery cell. The XA1 Ultralights were kept on by a 2,700mAh battery cell whereas the XA2 Ultra comes with a larger battery cell of 3,580mAh. The XA2 Ultra easily last one day on the single charge and on normal usage it can even survive the second day as well. Both the devices have USB Type-C 2.0 port for connectivity and charging. As far as fast charging is a concern both comes with fast charging tech.

Software

The Xperia XA2 Ultra is pre-installed with the latest Android Oreo 8.0 straight out of the box. Despite the fact it is the latest OS still not most of the latest mid-rangers have Oreo on board. The last year XA1 Ultra is still running on the Android Nougat 7.0 but it will be upgraded to Android Oreo later this year, however exact roll out time is still in dark. The XA2 Ultra takes lead because of being the latest option but overall UI experience on both the device is pretty slick.

Camera

Apart from design and certain hardware upgrades one of the key upgrades with the new XA2 Ultra is dual front-facing camera setup. The dual selfie snappers enhance the capabilities of the device to capture great shots with bokeh effect as well. The primary snapper is a 16MP module with f/2.0 aperture, Optical image stabilization, and autofocus whereas the secondary snapper is 8MP with f/2.4 aperture. The last year XA1 Ultra comes with a 16MP snapper with f/2.0 aperture, single LED flashlight, autofocus and OIS.

As far as rear cameras are a concern the XA2 Ultra primary snapper is a 23MP module with hybrid autofocus and f/2.0 aperture. It supports 4K recording and also capable to record slow-motion videos at 120 frames per second. The rear camera setup on XA1 Ultra is same like XA2 Ultra but it lacks slow-motion capturing capabilities.

Price

The pricing always plays an important role in the success of a smartphone. The XA1 Ultra is currently up for sale via Best Buy and Amazon in the US at a price tag of $349.99. The XA1 Ultra is available in White, Black, Pink and Gold. The latest XA2 Ultra is currently up for pre-order via Best Buy in the US. The device is available in a price tag of $450 in Blue, Black, Silver, and Gold. For the European region, the XA1 Ultra was announced for 350 Euros whereas the latest XA2 Ultra is currently listed for 450 Euros from a number of carriers.

Conclusion:

The Xperia XA2 Ultra being the latest smartphone is superior to the last year XA1 Ultra in a number of aspects. The new XA2 Ultra is bringing same display like the predecessor, powerful Qualcomm's chipset with 4GB RAM and expandable storage. The latest Android Oreo favor with Sony's custom UI layer. The first Sony smartphone with dual selfie snappers which performs better than most of the mid-rangers. The dual selfie snappers put it on par with the Samsung's latest Galaxy A8 series. So far in 2018, we have seen a couple of mid-rangers with dual selfie-cameras which seems like the next trend in mid-rangers.

Are you willing to upgrade to the latest XA2 Ultra considering all the aforementioned aspects? Feel free to share your views regarding the XA2 Ultra vs XA1 Ultra in the comments section below. Stay tuned for more comparisons and previews.

  • The Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.
  • The Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra isn't still available online. To be notified when it becomse available click here.

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Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra vs Xperia XA1 Ultra: An in-house battle
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