Sony Xperia 1 III and Sony Xperia 5 III revealed with a big photography surprise


Sony has taken the wrappers off of its latest smartphones and, as we have come to expect the tech giant, has added a boatload of new technology – including a variable telephoto lens which is pretty unique on a phone.

The Sony Xperia 1 II and Sony Xperia 5 II were two of the best smartphones of 2020, so it’s good to see them both get an update. Interestingly, the Sony Xperia 5 II is still a relatively new phone, so we weren’t expecting an update this soon – this does mean that it hasn’t had the biggest of refreshes but the tech that has been added is still impressive.

Here’s what you get with the two new Xperia phones…

Sony Xperia 1 III details

Sony Xperia 1 III and Sony Xperia 5 III revealed with a big photography surprise

The Sony Xperia 1 III is the flagship of the range and comes with a a 6.5-inch 21:9 OLED display, with 120Hz refresh rate. This means the phone should be decent for gaming and the like – especially when you combine it with 240Hz touch sampling (which helps with the sensitivity of touch controls). The screen is 4K, too, and supports HDR so fun for films.

It’s the camera tech, though, that has us really excited. There are 3x 12MP lenses on this thing – one for the main camera, the ultra-wide camera and this new-fangled telephoto lens.

Making the telephoto lens variable means that you essentially get two great optical zooms through the one lens – once around 3x and one at 4.4x.

Doing this means that Sony is using the lens to its fullest, rather than relying on digital manipulation on the back end which sometimes happens with camera phones. It also has a Time of Flight sensor to round its camera tech off.

Couple this with the whole thing being powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G chip, 12GB RAM and 256 or 512GB storage, as well as a big 4500mAh battery with 30W charging and what you have is a slick handset.

There’s also Dolby Atmos on board (and 360 spatial audio) and a 3.5mm jack.

Sony Xperia 5 III details

Sony Xperia 1 III and Sony Xperia 5 III revealed with a big photography surprise

We were big fans of the smaller Sony Xperia 5 II so it’s great to see the Sony Xperia 5 IIIarriving a little earlier than we were expecting.

The Sony Xperia 5 III really doesn’t scrimp on features and has much the same specs as the Sony Xperia 1 III.

The biggest change is the size of the screen (and, in turn, the device). Here the screen is a 6.1-inch 21:9 OLED display. It has the120Hz refresh rate and 240Hz touch sample that its bedfellow has, as well as HDR support but it’s Full HD+.

It also loses the ToF (Time of Flight) sensor from its camera setup, but battery life is the same despite it being a smaller phone (4500mAh battery, with 30W charging), the chip powering the thing and storage is also the same (Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G, 12GB RAM and 256 or 512GB storage).

You also get the 3.5mm jack, Dolby Atmos and 360 Spatial Audio functionality.

Both the Sony Xperia 1 III and Sony Xperia 5 III will be out in the early Summer, alongside the Sony Xperia 10 III – a mid-range smartphone that will be packing 5G. Price is yet to be announced.

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