Technically, Sony’s three new flagship Android phones, including the Xperia Z5 Premium, have been up for grabs stateside for several months now for people who were in a hurry and didn’t care about warranties.
But official sales, through sanctioned retailers, with manufacturer coverage for first-year hardware malfunctions, are only underway today, at least as far as the “standard” Z5 and Z5 Compact go. The bad news is fingerprint scanners are indeed missing, a controversial decision justified merely on cryptic “business” basis.
On the bright side, Best Buy realized very early prospective Sony Xperia Z5 Compact owners needed a palpable incentive to seal the deal, offering a $50 discount from the get-go. That’s right, B&H Photo Video is yet to remove the 4.6-incher’s pre-order tag, and the competition already sells it for $450 instead of $500 unlocked in graphite black.
Meanwhile, the black 5.2-inch Z5 costs $600 on Amazon, just as Sony recommends, supporting all US GSM carriers, including T-Mobile, AT&T and their respective 4G LTE networks.
Fingerprint recognition notwithstanding, the two phones are about as high-end as mobile technology came in late 2015, delivering everything from Snapdragon 810 processing power to all-day battery life and 23MP photography-taking excellence.
Aside from its smaller footprint, the Z5 Compact also packs less RAM than the Sony Xperia Z5 (2 vs 3GB RAM), with 720p screen resolution yielding a 323 ppi count, compared to 1080p and 428 pixels per inch respectively. No wonder the diminutive flagship is marked down, though the Marshmallow-ready 5.2-incher should probably follow suit if its makers want buyers to forgive them about the biometric authentication tradeoff.