Smartphone shootout – Sony Xperia ZR vs Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

xperiazrs4activeAs with most product segments, Sony and Samsung are in a battle for sales as each tries for supremacy. In this battle, we’ll see the new Samsung I9295 Galaxy S4 Active going toe-to-toe with the Sony Xperia ZR to see how they stack up.

Under the bonnet, the Sony Xperia ZR gets out of the blocks, powered by a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8064 processor. The Samsung I9295 Galaxy S4 Active revs up on a Qualcomm APQ8064T Snapdragon 600 CPU delivering up to 1.9GHz clock speed. Processors don’t get far with enough RAM to keep them happy and in this head-to-head, the S4 Active gets a 2 GB cache of memory to use; but so does the Xperia ZR. The Samsung unit comes with a good-sized 5.0-inch panel using TFT capacitive touchscreen technology with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels. Meanwhile its rival gets a 720 x 1280-pixel panel sized up to 4.55 inches and made from TFT capacitive touchscreen technology. In terms of gaming power, both phones are powered by an Adreno 320 GPU core.

When it comes to internal long-term storage, the Xperia ZR picks up 8 GB of flash storage while the Galaxy S4 Active has 16 GB (11.2 GB user available) to play with. But we never find the internal storage enough, so you’ll get microSD, up to 32 GB available in the Sony Xperia ZR; the S4 Active also has microSD, up to 64 GB to handle your favourite music and movie files. The Samsung’s operating system comes courtesy of Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) and Sony Xperia ZR is powered by Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS delivering your favourite apps.

As for portable power, you can never really have too much of this and the Samsung delivers a 2600mAh Li-Ion battery inside whereas the Sony comes up with a smaller 2300mAh Li-ion battery to keep you going.

Quad-band coverage is the norm these days and here, you’ll find the Samsung S4 Active does 2G over 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900MHz bands and provides 3G coverage via 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100MHz; by contrast, the Sony ¬†gets you on the air with 2G connectivity on 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900MHz and 3G coverage via 850 / 900 / 2100MHz. You can’t make a device without Wi-Fi these days and these products don’t disappoint – you’ll find 802.11 a/b/g/n on the Sony Xperia ZR and 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac-standard Wi-Fi inside the Galaxy. For personal wireless peripherals, the both phones will keep you connected through Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP.

Dedicated cameras are all but redundant now and these devices don’t help. The Sony unit features a 13.1 MP (4128×3096 pixels) with autofocus-type image sensor on the back and a simpler VGA option on the front for personal shots. The Active competes with a forward-facing 2 MP option but takes its best quality photos with the 8 MP (3264 x 2448 pixels) with autofocus image sensor on the back. If you’re looking for video recording on either device, they both can capture up to 1080p@30fps.

In this Sony Xperia ZR vs Samsung Galaxy S4 Active head-to-head, the major difference with these two phones compared to others on the market is their ability to take a splash – the Galaxy S4 Active is IP67 rated; the ZR is IP58-rated. What’s that mean? The Active has better dust protection than the ZR but the ZR is better in water, according to the IP certification.

And finally, you get all of those features inside a 131.3 x 67.3 x 10.5 mm package for the Sony Xperia ZR weighing 138 grams. The Galaxy S4 Active measures 139.7 x 71.3 x 9.1 mm and weighs in at 153 grams. The Sony was announced in May 2013 while the Samsung first appeared in June 2013.

NOTE: All specifications are subject to change and may not be correct at time of purchase. Please check before you buy any device that it meets your expectations and requirements.

BrandSonySamsung
ModelSony Xperia ZRSamsung I9295 Galaxy S4 Active
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon APQ8064Qualcomm APQ8064T Snapdragon 600
ClockUp to 1.5GHzUp to 1.9GHz
GPU typeAdreno 320Adreno 320
Screen size (inches)4.555.0
Screen resolution720 x 1280 pixels1080 x 1920 pixels
Screen typeTFT capacitive touchscreenTFT capacitive touchscreen
Operating systemAndroid 4.1 (Jelly Bean)Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)
RAM2 GB2 GB
Internal storage8 GB16 GB (11.2 GB user available)
External storagemicroSD, up to 32 GBmicroSD, up to 64 GB
Battery type2300mAh Li-ion2600mAh Li-Ion
- standby timeUp to 470 hoursUp to
- talk timeUp to 11 hoursUp to
Wi-Fi connectivity802.11 a/b/g/n802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetoothv4.0 with A2DPv4.0 with A2DP
2G coverage (MHz)850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G coverage (MHz)850 / 900 / 2100850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100
Rear camera13.1 MP (4128×3096 pixels) with autofocus8 MP (3264 x 2448 pixels) with autofocus
Front cameraVGA2 MP
Video recordingUp to 1080p@30fpsUp to 1080p@30fps
Dimensions131.3 x 67.3 x 10.5 mm139.7 x 71.3 x 9.1 mm
Weight138 grams153 grams
Announce DateMay 2013June 2013

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