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Sony’s Xperia 1 launches in Malaysia, but it costs more than a Galaxy Note 10+

Despite Sony Mobile officially withdrawing from the Southeast Asian region, it looks like Sony Malaysia is still interested in selling you smartphones because they’ve just launched the Sony Xperia 1. Now, this phone has been pretty highly anticipated for a while now, judging from the feedback we’ve received on our Xperia 1 articles, so let’s get right into it.

Sony will begin accepting pre-orders for their brand new Xperia 1 smartphone beginning tomorrow, the 24th of August 2019, and run all the way to the 6th of October 2019 at all Sony Stores in KLCC, the Curve, selected Sony Centres and online at Sony Store Online. It will come in three colours: Black, Grey and Purple. The Xperia 1 will then make an appearance at the Sony Expo 2019 (Mid Valley, centre court) from the 30th of August onward. The phone itself will be available in October, while deliveries for the pre-order are expected to begin on the 8th of October.

This smartphone will be priced at RM4,299, but if you pre-order, Sony Malaysia will also throw in a free pair of their amazing wireless noise-cancelling over-ear headphones, the WH-1000XM3, which retails for RM1,599. That’s a pretty good deal because those headphones have a quality I can vouch for.

That being said, Sony Malaysia is being rather bold with the pricing for their latest flagship smartphone because at RM4,299, it’s actually more expensive than the brand new Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ which retails for RM4,199. And, to make matters worse, that particular Note 10+ configuration comes with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage–double that of the Xperia 1’s 6GB+128GB memory configuration.

Of course, Sony’s new flagship–which launched at the beginning of this year during MWC 2019–does come with unique feature that you won’t find on the Galaxy Note 10+. Or, indeed any smartphone in the market right now.

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I am, of course, talking about the Xperia 1’s show-stopping 21:9 CinemaWide 4K HDR OLED display panel. Correct me if I’m wrong, but as of right now the Xperia 1 is still the only smartphone in the world with a 6.5″ 4K HDR OLED screen, which is absolutely nuts. In addition to that, this screen is also protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 6.

On top of that, you’re also getting the usual top-end flagship specs with the Xperia 1, including Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 processor, 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage that’s expandable via microSD. There’s also a triple camera setup at the back with a 12MP f/1.6 aperture wide-angled camera, a 12MP f/2.4 aperture telephoto camera and a 12MP f/2.4 aperture ultra-wide-angled camera. What makes this main camera unique is that it’s the first phone to offer Eye AF (AutoFocus) which is a feature you’d usually find on some of Sony’s mirrorless cameras instead. Up front, there’s also an 8MP selfie shooter.

That being said, it is a little disappointing that the phone only comes with a 3,330 mAh battery with no mention of support for wireless charging. It does, however, support USB-C PD fast-charging which is nice. But, despite the smartphone’s focus on cinematic video consumption, the Xperia 1 doesn’t come with a 3.5mm headphone jack.

The question is: is that 4K OLED panel enough to justify the staggering price tag of RM4,299, and to justify the lower memory configuration compared to something like the Note 10+? I mean, Sony’s official retail price is even higher than that of the imported set (AP set) that we saw Miyamondo selling back in July.

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Do you think Sony’s priced the Xperia 1 right here in Malaysia? Let me know in the comments below!

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