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Sony Xperia XZ3 vs Galaxy S9 Plus : Battle between two splendid flagships

05 September 2018 5

Unlike most of the big companies, Sony is amongst those OEMs who launch two flagships every year. Usually, the first flagship arrives at MWC whereas the company took IFA stage to showcase the second flagship of the year. This year Sony introduced Xperia XZ2 back in Q1 2018 and now the company is back with the successor Xperia XZ3. Usually, the big companies like Apple, Samsung, Google, and LG announce once a year.

Due to the yearly upgrade cycle many times smartphone manufacturers brought iterative improvements instead of new innovations. In that scenario how you can expect drastic changes from Sony in just six months. That is why not each iteration from Sony is truly innovative, however, the company always try to bring something different to attract buyers.

The Xperia XZ2 was announced with the best possible hardware at that time, the company retained similar hardware for the Xperia XZ3 because it is still the best in the market. However, the company introduced much-needed change in the display department and a few more refinements to make the XZ3 an attractive flagship. Like always we compared the latest Xperia XZ3 against its predecessor and competitors to know how the latest flagship stands out against the competition. Today we will compare the Xperia XZ3 against the Samsung's Galaxy S9 Plus.

Despite the fact the Galaxy S9 Plus is almost six months old, still, it is one of the best premium flagships on the market. The Xperia XZ3 new curved OLED display makes it a competitor of Galaxy S9 Plus. Let's find out which smartphone amongst the two is better in what aspects.

73 x 158 x 9.9 mm
6 inches - 2880x1440 px
73.8 x 158.1 x 8.5 mm
6.2 inches - 2960x1440 px
Go to comparison page
Design

With the Xperia XZ2 Sony introduced a refreshing design change. The company not only reduced the bezels from the edges to some extent but also polished the chassis to make it attractive. Thanks to reduced bezels, the company fit a larger display without increasing the dimensions. The Xperia XZ3 is featuring a gigantic display, however still it quite comparable to the Galaxy S9+. Due to its larger overall body, it will attract only those buyers who are looking for a giant display smartphone.

Both the Galaxy S9 Plus and Sony Xperia XZ3 comes with almost similar design like the predecessor. However, the Galaxy S9 Plus looks more refined and elegant. The Xperia XZ3 has significant bezels on top and bottom, however, it brings stereo speakers on top and bottom of the display. The chassis of both the devices is made up of aluminum with glass covering the front and rear side. Both the devices glass body is protected with the Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

The Xperia XZ3 features a single snapper on the rear with fingerprint scanner below it. The Galaxy S9 Plus has dual rear cameras aligned vertically in center and the fingerprint scanner is right below the sensors. Both the flagships are IP68 certified which means you can submerge them under 1.5 meters water for 30 minutes without any damage.

The Xperia XZ3 lacks the traditional 3.5mm headphone jack whereas the Galaxy S9 Plus retains the headphone jack. Both the devices have USB-C port for connectivity and charging. If we put both the devices side-by-side the Galaxy S9 Plus certainly looks more attractive and refined than its counterpart due to its sleek profile.

Display

One of the key-selling aspects of the Sony Xperia XZ3 is indeed its new OLED display with curved edges. The company not only brought an OLED display but also brought 2K resolution. So far the Sony flagships either have a Full HD+ resolution or 4K resolution.

The Xperia XZ3 sports a 6.0-inches display panel with Quad HD+ screen resolution of 1440 x 2880 pixels. Sony specially optimized the display to bring top-notch contrast ratio, clarity level is also pretty amazing. Undoubtedly the display panel on the XZ3 is good enough to challenge the Samsung Galaxy S9+ display in quality.

The Galaxy S9+ features a 6.2-inches Super AMOLED display with Quad HD+ screen resolution of 1440 x 2960 pixels. Like the Galaxy S9+, the Xperia XZ3 display is gently curved from edges. The Xperia XZ3 display aspect ratio is 2:1 and the pixels density is 529 pixels-per-inches whereas the Galaxy S9+ display aspect ratio is 18.5:9 and the pixels density is 529 pixels-per-inches.

Software

The Xperia XZ3 is announced to be shipped with Android Pie straight out of the box, it's amongst the first smartphones announced with the latest version of Android OS. One of the new feature Sony with the Xperia XZ3 is dubbed as Side Sense. The company utilizes the edges to showcases the most used Apps shortcuts. You can access the Side sense by simply tapping the edge of the display. If you don't like the feature, you can turn it off from settings.

The Galaxy S9+ was announced with Android Oreo 8.0 with Samsung's Experience UI layer over it. Samsung is also cleaning their custom UI from bloatware to ensure the users get features rich UI. The Galaxy S9+ will eventually receive the Android Pie in coming months, however, the exact roll out time is still in dark.

Hardware

Under the hood, the Xperia XZ3 and Galaxy S9+ are running on the latest best hardware. The Xperia XZ3 is powered up by the Qualcomm's Octa-core Snapdragon 845 chipset with 4GB RAM and built-in native storage is 64GB. It supports memory expansion via MicroSD card. On the other hand, the Galaxy S9+ US variant has the Snapdragon 845 chipset whereas the rest of the world gets the Exynos 9810 powered variant. The Octa-core SoC has 6GB RAM. The base variant has 64GB storage whereas the top-tier model has 256GB storage.

In terms of sheer power, both the devices are powerful enough to handle HIFI multi-tasking tasks and games easily. No matter which smartphone amongst the two you opt, you won't disappoint with the performance of the either. ​

Specs Xperia XZ3 Galaxy S9 Plus
Display 6.0-inches 6.2-inches
Screen resolution 1440 x 2880 pixels 1440 x 2960 pixels
Chipset Snapdragon 845 Snapdragon 845/ Exynos 9810
RAM 4GB 6GB
Storage 64GB Expandable via MicroSD 64GB Expandable via MicroSD
Rear camera 19MP Dual 12MP
Front camera 13MP 8MP
Battery 3,300mAh 3,500mAh
USB Type-C Type-C
3.5mm headphone jack No Yes
IP68 Yes Yes
OS Android Pie Android Oreo

Camera

The camera sensor on the Xperia XZ3 is the same as the Xperia XZ2. The rear camera is a 19MP sensor with f/2.0 aperture. Despite being a single snapper it performs pretty great, it can record HDR videos. You can also capture Full HD slow-motion videos at 960 frames per second and also HD videos at 480 frames per second. The camera app interface is improved to provide users the simplified experience.

The company claims a new feature which detects when the user wants to capture a photo. Once you take out your device from a pocket and hold it in landscape position, it will automatically open the camera interface.

The Galaxy S9 Plus comes with dual 12MP sensors. The primary sensor comes with a variable aperture between f/1.5 to f/2.4. In low-light conditions, the aperture is f/1.5 whereas, in stable lightening condition, the sensor automatically turns to f/2.4. The secondary sensor is a telephoto 12MP lens which allows the users to capture long-range shots with clarity. The best thing is Galaxy S9 Plus captures greatly not only in daylight conditions but also in low-light scenarios whereas the Xperia XZ3 works perfectly in stable lightening only. Up front, the selfie camera on the Xperia XZ3 is a 13MP sensor with f/1.9 aperture whereas the selfie snapper on the Galaxy S9+ is 8MP with f/1.7 aperture.

Battery

The Galaxy S9+ lights are kept on by a 3,500mAh battery cell whereas the Xperia XZ3 has a 3,300mAH battery cell. Both the devices support Qualcomm's Quick charge and also wireless charging. However, the wireless charging pads are sold as an accessory. Considering the battery cells, both the devices have enough juice under the hood to keep them running one day on a single charge.

Price

As far as pricing is a concern the Xperia XZ3 won't be available from carriers instead the buyers will have to grab an unlocked model for around $900. On the other hand, you will have to pay almost similar for the Galaxy S9+ in the US if you purchase from carriers on two years contract. Being almost six months older, it can be purchased for significantly lower from Amazon and other retailers.

The first problem is XZ3 won't be offered by the US carriers and also it will take a couple of months before hitting all the major markets whereas the Galaxy S9+ is widely available in almost all regions across the globe.

Conclusion:

The Galaxy S9+ and Xperia XZ3 are certainly amongst the best premium flagship smartphones in the market. The Xperia XZ3 is bringing on board dual stereo speakers, solid display, top-tier hardware, great cameras and the latest Android Pie straight out of the box. On the other hand, the Galaxy S9+ comes with the striking design with the sleek profile, best in the class dual curved OLED display, latest hardware, slightly old version of Android OS, larger battery and few exclusive services and apps from Samsung to enhance productivity.

The XZ3 isn't widely available and also lack of carrier support will certainly prompt buyers from purchasing Galaxy S9+ over the competitor. Feel free to share your thoughts regarding the Xperia XZ3 against the Galaxy S9+ in the comments section below. Stay tuned.

(last update 11 December 2018 @ 11:39)

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