Xperia Stories February 22

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It’s Mobile World Congress this week in Barcelona, which means most of Apple’s competitors are unveiling their upcoming smartphone lineups that will inevitably compete with Apple’s own 2016 lineup.

But while we usually have to wait until the fall for a new iPhone from Apple, this year is different in that Apple’s event planned for early next month will likely see it unveil the much anticipated iPhone 5se, a rare non-flagship and mid-year iPhone upgrade that will be a low to mid-tier smartphone competitor at pricing that will take over the current iPhone 5s lineup around $450 off contract. 

Among the announcements: Samsung has officially announced its Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge smartphones — both with a similar premium metal and glass design as previous generations but with upgraded internals — while LG showed off its all-new metal modular design for its new flagship LG G5. Also on show this week is a new smartphone flagship from Acer that offers an impressive 1TB of hybrid local/cloud storage, HTC’s One X9, and a trio of Xperia X smartphones from Sony, two with high camera specs including predictive focus.

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The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus cameras have taken joint first place in the influential DxOMark Mobile ranking of smartphone cameras – three points ahead of the two Android smartphones which previously headed the list, the Samsung Galaxy S5 and Sony Xperia Z3.

DxO Labs tests the image quality of literally thousands of cameras from entry-level smartphones to professional DSLRs, and is considered by many in the photography field to be the definitive database. The company said that Apple has “set the gold standard for smartphone image quality” …  expand full story

9to5toys 

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An interesting study out of Strategy Analytics today says that United States and United Kingdom smartphone owners “prefer device screens in the 4.0-inch to 4.5-inch range, as long as the device is also thin.”

“Almost 90 percent of existing smartphone owners surveyed chose a prototype smartphone with a display larger than their current device,” commented Paul Brown, a Director in the Strategy Analytics User Experience Practice. “This trend is driven by increased mobile web browsing ability, as well as engaging video and gaming experiences.”

Not surprisingly, women overall chose smaller phones than men, and existing Android users chose bigger screens than iPhone users. Still, it seems Apple’s customers would prefer a bigger screen.

Kevin Nolan, Vice-President for the User Experience Practice at Strategy Analytics, added, “In order for smartphone owners to adopt larger devices, it is important for handset manufacturers to ensure that mobile devices are not too heavy and that the devices remain thin enough for purses and pockets.”

The data seems to line up with our January poll of 9to5Mac readers in which the majority prefers the next iPhone to be 4-inches or more:

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