Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray review

The power of the Xperia Arc in a small and sleek chassis

TODO alt text

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

One of the complaints about the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc was (and still is) the pretty woeful battery life. The 1500mAh power pack may have been useful in older phones, but it just couldn't cut it on the Xperia Arc with that vivid screen and hungry thirst for juice.

Indeed, one sales rep at a large high street mobile phone retailer told us: "The phone's great – but I can't lie, the battery's shit". If that's his sales patter, you've really got to worry.

So, we picked up the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray with a slightly heavy heart and prepared to find that Sony Ericsson had fitted it with something pointless like a 400mAh battery due to its size.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

We nearly fell off our chairs to discover that this little baby has a 1500mAh unit inside it too – the same as its big brother, but on a screen that's much smaller.

It seemed too good to be true, but you know what? We're really thrilled to say it wasn't. Because here, in the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray, we have an Android handset where we can confidently say the battery life does not completely suck.

Sony Ericsson quotes the talk time as up to 7 hours and standby time as up to 440 hours, depending on your network band type. With moderate use, you'll still probably not get anything more than two full days out of it. But you'll certainly notice it go a long way.

We got some fantastic readings out of our evaluation unit.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

We're talking taking it off charge at 7am, some pretty heavy twitter usage for a couple of hours, an eight mile run (using both the RunKeeper software and FM radio simultaneously), about 20 minutes worth of streaming music over Bluetooth to the car stereo, sending about 12 texts and eight emails, plus about 30 mins worth of calls. At this rate, we still had 32% by 7pm.

That's quite commendable since Android smartphones (even Gingerbread handsets) aren't known for being phenomenal with battery. If you barely use the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray, you'll notice it lose about 1% an hour on battery, but these things are always subjective and depend on the strength of your signal and various other factors.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

You're pretty connected in every conceivable way with the usual suspects including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and HSDPA/HSUPA included. We weren't overjoyed with the signal strength of the Wi-Fi unit, as we mentioned in the Contacts and calling section of this review, but everything else works as you would expect.

The GPS packs a powerful punch for such a small baby and we managed to get a signal indoors a fair distance from the window within five seconds from a cold start.

HSDPA really does live up to its name, and data flows down from the ether into this handset like molten lava when loading web pages. We still can't get over how bloomin' fast this is at displaying websites.

Sony ericsson xperia ray review

Bluetooth streamed across to our car stereo with no issues.

Sony Ericsson provides its own remote sync software, which helpfully enables you to sync your contacts with its servers. That's nice of it, but we can't help wonder why bother when Android is based on Google, which offers contacts sync out of the box. Still, it's there if you want it.

NFC is not included on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray – not that we expected it to be. Sony Ericsson is not one of the handset manufacturers pushing the technology down our throats, and obviously doesn't view it as crucial to the Xperia user base.

DLNA is naturally supported (we'd be surprised if it wasn't, since Sony was the firm to bring it to us originally years ago) and helpfully enables you to share your media on the big screen via either a PS3 or supported TV.

We think it's restricted to Sony Bravia units, because we struggled with our Samsung TV. However, getting it connected to the PlayStation was a dream, and we were very pleased to be able to bore friends with our holiday snaps in glorious Technicolor!

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory300 MB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA
SAR Value0.96 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyXPERIA
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution8.1 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSony Mobile
Battery Talk Time6.83 Hour
Product Modelray
Screen Size8.4 cm (3.3")
Screen Resolution480 x 320
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)100 g
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR, REACH, RoHS, WEEE
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density297 ppi
Height111 mm
Width53 mm
Depth9.4 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time430 Hour
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product NameXPERIA ray Smartphone
Processor Speed1 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon
Product LineXPERIA
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Digital Compass, Proximity Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part Number1252-3268
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing Information

Fast, powerful and drop-dead gorgeous Android phone.

9.4 mm thin and with a stylish aluminium frame: meet the Xperia ray Android phone. Watch videos and relive magic moments on the crisp 3.3' Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine. There's power beneath the sleek surface too - Xperia ray is fast, responsive and has a high capacity battery.

Package Contents
  • XPERIA ray Smartphone
  • 4GB microSD Card
Limited Warranty2 Year