Phone that's truly smart and of good build

Sony Xperia Z1 Smartphone

THE Xperia Z1 smartphone has been out for a while, although it has been over-shadowed by other bigger-name smartphones, like Samsung's Galaxy Note 3.

This is one truly smart phone - using a Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core processor - with a high-quality build.

Unlike the Xperia Z Ultra whose 6.4-inch screen was a mega experience for users, the Z1 is a more down-to-earth experience that is much easier to handle, literally.

Perhaps it ought to be compared with the Xperia Z which, like the Z1, has a 5-inch full-HD screen. The Z1 is actually a better version of the Xperia Z.

Its strongest feature is the high-quality camera with a 27mm wide-angle and bright F2.0 G lens. Megapixel count is 20.7MP. There is also a slate of Xperia camera apps to add to the power and versatility of the Z1.

There is one aspect of the Z1's design that I have problems with - the SIM-card placement. To insert the SIM card, a slim plastic holder has to be prised out of the handset. The SIM is inserted into this holder and stuffed back into the phone.

Why can't Sony have stuck to the push-in spring-loaded slot for SIM cards that most other Android phones use? It is so much easier to insert the tiny micro-SIM.

How much: $998 without contract. Available in black, white and purple

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