The brand new Nexus 6 is one of the best Android phones of 2014. But, how does it compare to the Sony Xperia Z3, a phone that took the Android world by storm just a couple of months ago.
On paper, both have great screens for movies and games, stereo speakers for high quality music, and powerful processors to blast through your apps. But, how do they compare in the real world? This is what we thought.
These two phones look good and feel good. The only problem is that the Nexus 6 feels a bit big at first, but we say that every time phones take a leap in size. The 4.3-inch Samsung Galaxy S2 used to feel huge but it’s tiny now. What’s good about the Nexus 6 is the shape of the back – the edges taper down to this really thin side, making the whole phone fit nicely in your hand.
The Xperia Z3, meanwhile, has smoothly curved edges that provide a comfortable grip on the phone. And as a bonus it’s waterproof, so you can rest assured that the build quality is pretty high. Really, it comes down to personal preference with the design of these two.
When it comes to screens, bigger is better. With more size, you can see more detail and ultimately get more stuff done. The screen on the Nexus 6 is huge compared to the one on the Xperia Z3 at 6-inches compared to Sony’s 5.2-inches. It’s got almost twice as many pixels too, so you can see even more fine detail in movies and text looks sharper online and in eBooks. But, it’s important to note that the Xperia Z3 displays better colours – this is due to Sony’s Live Colour LCD technology.
The software is one of the main selling points for Nexus phones. It’s pure Android (or naked Android), so it looks and works exactly how Google designed it to. Straight out the box, the Nexus 6 comes preinstalled with Google’s most up-to-date OS, Android 5.0 Lollipop. It looks great, runs really smoothly and has loads of new features to improve everything from battery life to security.
Sony has some cool software features of its own and runs Android 4.4 KitKat, but is mostly covered by Sony’s own Timescape user interface. The camera can broadcast live to YouTube or Facebook and you can now play PlayStation 4 games remotely on your Xperia Z3 with a new function called Remote Play.
Both cameras are fantastic, showing really sharp detail. But the Z3 photos really stand out, especially when you’re shooting in low light, like on a night out. Everything comes out bright, colourful and clear. The Nexus 6 photos are brilliant and can’t really be faulted, but the Z3 still comes out on top with its 20.7 megapixel shooter. If you like to edit your photos, the Nexus 6 has a lot to offer. Its new software brings endless ways to tune everything about your shots with just a couple of taps, helping you create something really unique.
In the mobile phone world, Sony’s Xperia range is held in quite high regard when it comes to battery life. STAMINA mode has a lot to do with this, allowing users to stretch out battery life by closing down unused apps.
Google has added new software to Android Lollipop to make your battery last longer, too. So, when it comes to a battery showdown between these two giants, both phones have their merits. What could possibly put the Nexus 6 in front is that it comes with a new Turbo Charger, which can give you an incredible six hours of use from just 15 minutes of charging.
Despite a slightly newer processor and the new software, the Nexus 6 is no faster than the Xperia Z3. Both phones are really quick thanks to their raw power, but the Nexus 6 feels like it’s held back a bit by the new animations Android Lollipop includes. Every time you open an app, it ‘grows’ from random parts of the screen, instead of just opening like on the Z3. It might look nice, but it takes a fraction of a second longer. Thankfully these animations can be deactivated if you’re looking for a faster experience. Want to find out more about these great phones? Then read our in depth Nexus 6 and Sony Xperia Z3 reviews. And don’t forget to check out our other head to head comparisons.