Sony Ericsson Xperia Play (GSM)

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Reviewed by jonshipman (Currently owns)

The Xperia Play feels like a solid device. For a gamer it's a no-brainer, the gamepad is the biggest sell that this phone offers. The other specs leave a bit to be desired when comparing this phone to the competition. Inside it's similar to a MyTouch4G (if you need a reference point). Same GPU and similar CPU (albeit less RAM), physical Android OS buttons, and front facing camera. It officially supports Android 2.3.4 with a promise of ICS early 2012. Let's get into the nitty gritty of it.

The first thing anyone will notice is the poor performance of the screen. I came from a Nexus S to the Play and going from an AOMLED to a TFT is quite drastic. The auto brightness (which can be turned off if you have 2.3.4) is overly sensitive and may induce flickering. In bright daylight the screen can be muted and difficult to see. The Play comes with a screen protector factory installed which can be difficult to remove (according to reports). I have not removed mine so that may account for some of my issues.

I bought a second battery to use with this phone (always do) but I've only used it only a handful of times. And of those times it was a good 12:00-1:00 am before I had to pop in it. Those days tended to be on the game heavy side as well. Short of it, you won't be disappointed with the battery life by combining a phone and gaming device. Another mark has to be mentioned for the design. Many people knock plastic phones for being cheap feeling. While that may be true, the Play can take a beating. In the month I've owned it I've dropped it twice without a mark to show for it.

The Breakdown

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  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • Design 9
  • Display 3
  • Camera(s) 6
  • Reception / call quality 6
  • Performance 6
  • Software 7
  • Battery life 8
  • Ecosystem 7
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