Sony Xperia Z2 review

The jack of all trades flagship smartphone

Sony Xperia Z2 review
The Xperia Z2 does a lot of things well

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What's the battery life like on the Sony Xperia Z2? One word: impressive.

Is it the clear market leader in terms of battery life? No, but the Xperia Z2 is on par with the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 while also comfortably beating the iPhone 5S.

Sony Xperia Z2 review

It has a 3200mAh power pack onboard, which is bigger than the Samsung and HTC, although it doesn't provide superior performance.

With moderate usage (email, messaging, calls, web browsing, social networking and some camera action) I was easily able to eek out a day and a half of battery life on the Xperia Z2.

If you're slightly more careful the Z2 will go pretty much two full days on a single charge, and that's partly thanks to the Snapdragon 801 processor under the hood which delivers superior power efficiency over the 800 which featured in the Xperia Z1 and LG G2.

Running the TechRadar battery test of a 90 minute video at full brightness (230 lux in the Xperia Z2's case) with various accounts syncing in the background saw a drop on 20% on the Z2.

That's a slightly poorer performance than the Galaxy S5 which lost 16%, but better than the One M8 which saw a 23% drop in the same test.

It's not a disastrous result, but if you have a serious mobile movie or gaming addiction you'll want to keep a charger close by as chances are the Xperia Z2 won't make it to the end of the day.

Sony Xperia Z2 review

Sony does provide a range of power management options, the main one being Stamina mode which disables mobile data and Wi-Fi connectivity when not in use in a bid to save as much juice as possible.

Stamina mode can also restrict hardware performance (if you chose it to), and while you'll still be able to do everything on the Xperia Z2, load times are noticabely slower and I'd advise against loading up the likes of Real Racing 3.

To be fair though, if you're running that low on battery, gaming should be out of the question anyway.

If you're not desperately trying to eke out every last drop of juice there are some less aggressive power saving modes available. One of which is low-battery mode where you can hand pick functions to disable if the battery drops below a certain percentage.

Sony added Ultra Stamina mode in the Z3 update. It's an extreme measure that takes your smartphone back in time, cutting off the Internet, and restricting it to a handful of apps, like phone, camera, and the basic utilities. The Z2 can go days between charges in this mode.

Another is location based Wi-Fi which I've briefly touched on already in this review. This switches off Wi-Fi when you leave the location of a saved network, and turns it back on when you re enter the area.

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.