(Update: Sony confirms no Xperia Z6) Sony Xperia X to hit US, may usurp Xperia Z entirely

by: John DyeFebruary 24, 2016
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sony xperia X X performance and xa aa 5

Update, February 24: A Sony spokesperson has confirmed to Android Authority that there will be no Xperia Z6 even as the Facebook post mentioned below has been edited to remove mention of the Z6. Furthermore, it was also hinted that the Xperia XA “might” replace the M4 Aqua’s successor as well, meaning that the Xperia M series might also be subsumed under the new X banner. Meanwhile, although the X series isn’t advertised as having an IP rating, Sony claims it will still withstand splashes and short submersions, although the company will no longer advertise the fact or repair water-damaged devices under warranty.

Original post, February 23:While it’s true Sony hasn’t managed to snag anywhere near as a significant chunk of the US market as major players like Samsung, HTC, and LG, their Xperia Z line has been their trademark presence in the market. However, now it looks like Sony is going to bring their international mid-range brawler, the Xperia X series, to colonial soils, effectively replacing the Z line stateside and abroad.

YT thumb Grushie 2See also: Sony Xperia X series hands-on20

The source of this turn of events has roots in Sony Germany’s Facebook page. In response to a fan stating that she was really only interested in a Z6 or she would be done with the brand, Sony responded:

Hallo Sarah, ein Z6 wird es nicht geben. Die neue X Serie steht unter einem veränderten Konzept, welches den Bedürfnissen unserer Nutzer noch stärker gerecht wird. Du kannst dich natürlich trotzdem auf die aktuellste Technik in unseren Smartphones verlassen – das hat ja nichts mit dem Namen zu tun. :) Viele Grüße, dein Sony Team.

In English:

Hi Sarah, the Z6 will not continue to exist. The new X series represents a modified concept that will meet the needs of our users even more. Of course, you can still rely on the latest technology in our smartphones – which has nothing to do with the name. :) Best regards, your Sony team.

This might surprise a lot of people, considering the Xperia’s X line isn’t anywhere close to what the Z line is offering in terms of specs. However, the fiscal figures add up for Sony, who has been trying to face down three separate markets at the same time. By consolidating their brand, they’re lowering the cost of development, which increases the amount of cash available for marketing: which Sony direly needs in this area.

What are your thoughts of Xperia X allegedly replacing the Xperia Z line? A business-savvy move by Sony, or a betrayal to their fanbase? Let us know your opinions in the comments below!

  • Илиян

    This is a picture of Sony Mobile Bulgaria where they say that the Xperia X is not replacing the Z series. The response basically translates into: The Xperia X series will be available in Bulgaria. More information about the price of the devices will follow soon. This line is not a continuation of the Xperia Z line, it is just another product line.

    • caur19

      then i can guess the price will be lower than their flagships. and im sold with X Performance… :)

      • May Czos

        Why? Massive bezels, less RAM than flagships, mediocre camera with no OIS and crazy price. Even the regular X will cost 600€, all that for Snapdragon 650. For comparison S7 costs 699€.

        • caur19

          600 euros for SD 650,… damn sony. then no way i’ll buy that.

          • neonix

            He just pulled that number out of his ass. Don’t assume everything people write online is a fact. Sony has not said ANYTHING about prices for the X line yet.

            Considering they lowered the screen sizes and dropped IP ratings, I bet Sony is trying to make these cost less than the Z series has because the price was a common complaint and reason why they didn’t sell well.

        • Junior in Jamaica

          I doubt the X will cost the same as the S7.

          • May Czos

            X Performace will. X will be slightly cheaper.

        • The street price will be much lower. Design and build quality will be great. 3gb of ram are enough, camera is not mediocre at all and it will be good enough for a phone. The fullhd resolution is perfect for a 5″ screen and will guarantee better performance and greater battery life. Bezels are on par with many other phones, and better than the iPhone. 5″ is perfect for the average user. Audio will probably be good and the software will be better (simpler and faster) than the s6. Overall, it will be a very good phone, perfect for the average user who does not care of QHD screens and having more ram than he actually needs, but a beautiful phone that works well. That’s what sony will deliver.

          • caur19

            ok thnks man, i’ll get mi 5 instead.

          • May Czos

            Design is awful, it looks old and bezels are massive – much bigger than in the Z3/Z5. Camera is very mediocre for a flagship. 3GB of RAM is not enough for a flagship in 2016. Bezels are not on par with other phones, they’re much bigger. Below 67% screen to body ratio is terrible, this thing is as big as many 5,2″ phones. Audio will be average like in any Xperia (no Hi-Fi DAC), software looks like old Android and it’s not exactly fast (Z5 is pretty slow). It will be a phone for an average user for theprice of the best flagship.

  • apolloa

    It is a stupid move by Sony, and considering the RIDICULOUS pricing of the new X range then they are flagships, I mean when the X Performance matches the cost of the new S7 you can hardly call it a high end mid range as that’s just embarrassing. So what, are Sony going to launch a flagship device costing as much as the S7 Edge now then if not more?

    • TheDude

      I think the X line is just split into 3: XA – low tier, X – mid range, X performance – high end.

      I mean, the X performance has all the latest specs (SD820, Sonys best camera as of now, waterproof, as much ram as the Z5, etc…) I don’t think it can be considered a high end mid range, but an actual flagship.

      The only thing that sets it lower than the competition is a 1080p display and not 1440p, but IMO 1080p is plenty enough.

      • apolloa

        And I would agree with you, however it was Sony themselves from what I’ve read who were promoting it as a high end mid range mobile. So take from it what you will.

        • TheDude

          Hmm, interesting.

          I think sony themselves don’t know what to do, they give mixed answers.
          Like sony germany who said the X perf will replace the Z6 while sony bulgaria said the Z series is to stay…..

  • AS118

    If they’re making the price good and the specs good enough, it might be a smart move. The Z series only makes sense in the US (at least) with carrier support. With 0 carriers having the Z5 series (as far as I know) it’s not easy to buy, especially if you like to finance over 2 years.

    Plus the Z series is expensive, but it’s also not a big name like the Galaxy S or iPhone. They’re kind of being squeezed out by the big 2.

    • Btort

      i don’t see why it’s so hard for sony to get carriers to carry the z series…. and the problem with them is they take WAY too long to release in the U.S. Didn’t the Z5 just come out in feb without a fingerprint scanner? wtf sony

    • May Czos

      Price will be quite high, even the Snapdragon 650 version will be very close to S7 in terma of price.

  • Magwheelz

    X…Y….or Z…I’m sticking with Sony.

  • nebulaoperator

    John Dye “Xperia’s X line isn’t anywhere close to what the Z line is offering in terms of specs. ” are you sure? because x performance is on the par with z5 line even better in some hardware aspectd like sd820 and new hybrid focus cam also has nice brushed metal back instead of fragile glass.

    • neonix

      Yeah, but let’s just ignore that fact so we can rag on Sony more because it’s fun to do so. /s

      • nebulaoperator

        That’s why I like forums

  • Jonathan Morales

    I’m really looking forward to the X Series, personally I’ve always been interested in the Z Series, but have never taken the plunge on getting one since they never been released on the US just like they do on other markets.
    In regards of the X Performance is the one that I want to get when it’s (hopefully) released stateside in the summer, and also maybe they will make it available to carriers.

  • Nidou Xperia™

    it doesn’t really matter whether an X, or Z as a flagship code name, but what matter most is the hardware+software improvement and performance including the design. THAT’S IT

  • subm

    Sony makes good devices but has a bad strategy.

  • TrueGamer2689

    first of all if sony wants to be in the competition with the big boys than they need to also work on a power house smartphone example the Xperia x performance should change the screen to a quad hd instead of full hd that only has 1080p wake up Sony 1080 is in the past its now the present and future you need to worry about get rid off the full hd 1080p and start using quad hd on your xperia x performance that has a power house processor and also change the ram into 4gb one last thing change that crapy biometric fingerprint scanner you had it on the z5 premium beause it was horrible use the sansor that samsung nexus 5x and 6p and apple uses or you will loose customers trust.

  • TrueGamer2689

    also get a new market manager like someone from the playstation side cuase you guys seriously need to improve your marketing strategy or otherwise say goodbye to sony mobile

  • Phil

    If your gonna make three different versions Sony why couldn’t one of them be 5.5″ or larger. Seriously three phones with the exact same screen size. I might have My Z3 forever.

    • Josiah

      Get the xperia Z5

    • TheDude

      Because there are plenty of other huge phones on the market from other manufacturers, making another device to shift into the already saturated 5.5″ smartphone space is a huge waste of money that won’t even break even.

      There seem to be less 4.7-5.2″ devices so it’s smarter to slot into this market,as they always have.

  • gubagub

    Sony could dominate the part of the market that wants small top of the line phones. Many brands are competing in the midrange pushing down prices and upping specs. It’s like Sony is going out of its way to avoid selling phones.

  • Jacob Markussen

    It is incredible how they continue to fail to find the right strategy when their devices are usually of such high quality. Taking the Z out of the equation seems like yet another random strategy move in POV. It was hands down one of the best smartphones out there.

    Looks a little like they are failing with their smartphone line the same way they did with their laptops. The best hardware out there (except maybe from Macs) but not selling nearly enough.

    Give us a Z6 Premium, Z6 and Z6 Compact and focus on those Sony instead of 30 different models, not the other way around!

  • Exare

    I think they’re biggest problem isn’t them changing the names of their phones but rather their ridiculous lack of US exposure. I never see US ads for Sony phones and most carriers don’t even stock them in-store. They’re online only availability hurts them in the US market.

    Make it so you can walk into a carrier outlet and walk out with a Sony phone and I bet they’d see a huge improvement. Most people still relate the Sony brand with high quality so putting them right in front of people should be a no brainer. Hell, most people I talk to about getting a new phone don’t even know Sony makes them!

    I would have purchased one years ago had then been available from my carrier, in-store, and I didn’t have to hunt and peck through all the different versions to find one that was 100% compatible with my network of choice.

  • Swordylove

    I was hoping the rumor about Z6 having 4 different sizes were true (because I want the Z6 mini). If this news is true, then it’s even worse than having the rumor to be untrue. No more compact phone from Sony. Sad sad world.

  • Red_Sky_Road

    Moving over to Galaxy S7. Bye Sony… Good luck with your megapixel bumping…