Sony Vaio Corporation is known for its amazing line of laptops that still deliver high performance. The company decided to leave the laptop business in 2014 and following this decision, the Vaio unit of the company was sold off to investment fund Japan Industrial Partners. Apparently the company has ventured out into the smartphone market and is coming out with a brand new smartphone of its own, the Vaio Phone VA-10.
For those of you who have had a good experience with Sony Vaio, it would be easy to comprehend the technical expertise and capabilities of the brand’s offerings. The smartphone would be powered by Android 5.0 Lollipop and would feature a 1.2GHz quad-core processor. In terms of design, the device appears similar to the Nexus 4 and Panasonic Eluga U2. But form factor would not prove to be an issues unless it has a negative impact on the comfort of usage. Vaio has decided to keep the screen’s size as 5 inches with a resolution of 720p. It is interesting to note that Android devices are now looking at 5 inch sizes as the most convenient and “perfect” size for smartphone displays.
In keeping with other smartphones in the mid-range segment, the Vaio Phone would sport a 13 megapixel rear camera and a 5 MP front camera. This should be sufficient for getting some really good shots as long as the camera has been configured for maximum performance. The number of pixels in the camera do not always correspond to quality of the captured image. Due to the pricing of the smartphone, the device comes with a glass back panel with a staid black front. It is common for smartphones in the mid-range segment to have this element in the design as you cannot expect a super-premium feel and elegance in this segment.
The device would have 2GB of RAM which is sufficient for delivering lag-free performance and should be able to handle most multi-tasking requirements. Storage on this device comes in standard configuration, i.e. 16 GB (internal storage). For those who prefer using a dual SIM smartphone, this device might come as a slight disappointment because it has a single SIM slot. It should not make much difference as there are many smartphones out there in the market which offer single SIM usage. Apart from these features, the smartphone would have all the basic connectivity options and features that are provided by competitors in the applicable price segment.
Vaio will release the VA-10 on 20th March in Japan. Initially, the smartphone would be available only in Japan and other regions would have to wait for some more time till any plans of a global release is shared by the company. Considering that the smartphone would be the first probe by the company into the smartphone market, it is obvious that they would prefer to keep the target area relatively small so as to be able to monitor the outcomes in a controlled environment. On a business front, this would help them to identify possible issues and rectify them without risking a huge loss that would be inevitable with a global release.
The phone would be priced at $US420 (approxRs 26,400) without a contract. As of now, the features might not seem to justify the price tag. But the actual capabilities and performance of the smartphone remains to be seen once it has been commercially launched in the market. Competitors like Xiaomi and other brands offer high end features at pretty affordable rates. It would be interesting to see how Vaio is able to manage the competition in the market, especially with the rise in preference for budget smartphones that have some high end features.
For those who reside in other countries, now would be the right time to get in touch with friends and relatives living in Japan. You can ask them to purchase and send you the VA-10 if you cannot wait for the global launch. I know that most of you would be keeping their hopes high with Vaio’s first entrant in the smartphone market. Just wait for 20th March for first looks and in-depth reviews of the VA-10.
Till then, check out this intro video for the Vaio Phone VA-10. Don’t forget to leave your opinions in the comments section below.
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