[Updated - With more leaked images which show off the profile and the large speaker at the bottom of the device (in the design section), the possible confirmation of the name, and the first video teaser of the smartphone from Sony]
The Sony Honami, or Xperia Z1, is expected to be announced at Sony’s pre-IFA event on September 4, with the company hoping to steal the limelight from another eagerly awaited device, the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, which will also be launched that day. Details about the highly-anticipated smartphone from Sony has been making the rounds of the rumor mill for a while now, and with less than ten days to go, we thought it best to put it all together in one place! Here’s everything we (think) we know about the Sony Honami/i1/Xperia Z1.
This year has been the year of the smartphone camera, with all OEMs, including HTC, Samsung, Motorola, and Nokia doing something different, and that is definitely the case with Sony as well, with the Honami’s biggest selling point expected to be its camera. Everything we know about the Sony Honami camera is based on leaks and speculation, and all we have so far is a teaser image from Sony featuring the camera lens and flash, with the G-lens branding next to it.
As far as the specs are concerned, an alleged camera sample that is assumed to have been taken by the Honami, and device specifications leaked by ePrice, confirms a 20.7 MP shooter (5248 x 3936 resolution) with a 1/2.3-inch sensor, a 4:3 aspect ratio, and f/2.0 aperture, with Sony G Lens and BIONZ Image processing engine, and a dedicated camera shutter button. Another leak suggests that the Honami camera will be capable of 4k video recording, which is something we expect the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 to feature as well. We can also expect the camera software to be packed with features (ala Samsung Galaxy S4) to make the most out of the impressive hardware.
While some OEMs have been known to pair a great camera on an otherwise mid-range device, that is definitely not the way Sony is going with this particular device. The specifications of the Sony Honami were leaked a while ago, and unless we’re way off base, this is what you can expect from the upcoming Sony flagship -
A while ago, a system dump of the Honami’s software was leaked, allowing us to get a look at the brand new user interface, which include an updated launcher, a new app drawer, and some new apps, such as a new Walkman app which features Music Unlimited integration.
There’s also a new version of Small Apps, which allows users to run multiple apps on the screen at the same time, along with a new virtual keyboard, which I’m sure will introduce some new features. You can take a look at the UI screenshots and software changes here.
If the leaked press images are accurate, Sony is planning to stick with a clean, flat, and elegant design for the Sony Honami, which will be quite similar to its other major 2013 releases, such as the Xperia Z and the Xperia Z Ultra. If the teaser image of the camera lens (above) is any indication, we’re looking at a glass back, with slightly more curved corners compared Sony’s other high-end smartphones.
We can also expect the Sony Honami to be waterproof, unless the “about to make a splash” teaser isn’t as literal as we think. In this teaser, we also get a good look at the top and right side of the device, with the headphone jack on the top side, and the port flaps, power button, volume rocker, and what is probably a dedicated camera button on the right side of the handset.
Another press image leak suggests that the Sony Honami will be available in multiple color options, including black, white, and purple.
We ran a poll to see what you’d like the name of the Sony Honami to be, and while most of you voted to keep it the same, any who wanted the name Xperia Z1, there’s good news! Digi-wo published an image of the Honami along side the Xperia Z and the Xperia Z Ultra. As expected, the Honami and the Xperia Z are quite similar, with the Xperia Z Ultra significantly larger than both. What is of interest in the image is the product stickers placed on top, which show that the Honami could possibly be released as the Sony Xperia Z1, as some previous rumors suggested.
Sony also released the first video teaser of the device, which gives us a great look at the frame of the smartphone, with a special focus on the G-lens camera at the back of the device. You can check out the video here -
As you can see, there’s quite a lot we know about the Sony Honami and with a little more than a week to go before its official release, the rumors and leaks are definitely going to increase, and we’ll definitely keep this post updated.
September 4 cannot get here fast enough!