Xperia z3 compact vs iPhone 6 my review.

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by JAlvi, Oct 3, 2014.

  1. JAlvi, Oct 3, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2014

    JAlvi macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2014
    So.... I've always had an iPhone since the iphone 3. I tried to use a Samsung Galaxy skyrocket and that was not a pleasant experience then ended up going back to the 4s after a weekend. Needless to say making this purchase of another android phone came with some hesitation. I've had the iPhone 6 since launch and with its upgrades I still felt like I longed for something more or something different. After seeing early reviews on the z3c I felt like it was my dream machine but still skeptical. I've used the ip6 for almost 2 weeks but now using the z3c for about 3 days and this is my comparison:


    iPhone 6 camera is amazing. Everything stays true to color and the definition is great. The z3c is also very nice with many more options but it does take some skill to take a perfect shot. Playing with settings is key. Slightly better camera on ip6 but not huge deal for me as I've taken side by side pics with both and have had mixed outcomes.


    Ip6 speaker is louder than the 5s was, making it a good upgrade. The z3c is just as loud but you are listening in stereo due to the dual speakers and they are placed in a better location. Even like this there can be a muffled sound on certain audio files but it really depends. I would say sound is even.

    Form factor

    The z3c has pretty much the same size screen as the ip6 but a lot less form factor due to the beautiful bezels. You can use the z3c very easily with one hand just we did with our iPhone 5. It feels nice and heavy and it screams quality as well. To me the z3c feels just as premium and more comfortable than the ip6.

    Screen display

    The z3c looks as good and to me better than the ip6. Brighter beautiful colors I am not accustomed to being new to android phones. The resolution specs mean nothing in this comparison it's a stalemate. Either way you can't go wrong but I slightly prefer the z3c in this.

    Processing power etc.

    Both phones are fast. The only thing I've noticed is that scrolling through Facebook and Instagram is more fluid on the ip6. Why is there still some studder on these android phones? It's not a deal breaker by any means but there is a difference to get used to. Gaming, there is no difference. Browsing is the same on both... Fast. No issues with ram on either. 1gb v 2gb blah blah blah. No difference.


    Ip6 battery is good. I can go a full day on normal use. The z3c battery is bigger, a good amount bigger. Yesterday I left to work on a 89% charge. Played my vegas on lunch, browsed Facebook off and on as well as Instagram and flipboard throughout the day. I got home around 7 pm and played music throughout an hour workout on pandora. At MIDNIGHT I started to download 30 free songs on an android app that added these songs straight to my music app (amazing to me,no need to use iTunes) I was also streaming song previews while they were downloading. After all this I still had 20% left on the battery at bed time. So the z3c battery is very good. Do not think your going to get 2 days out of it though. It will give you one full day easy no matter what you throw at it.

    What do I miss from the ip6? Fingerprint scanner. The apps seem to be a bit better quality from the App Store. The easy use of the camera and scrolling on Facebook that is so fluid. iMessages

    What do I like on the z3c?
    Form factor, waterproof, speakers. I love that I can customize more and download music straight to the phone. I like the led notification light so no need to turn on the phone to know if I got a text or email. Double tap screen to wake.

    You can't go wrong with either but surprisingly.. I am using the z3c and I have not gone back to my ip6 like I thought I would right away. Is it because it's something new? Is it the form factor. No clue, but I do know that's its a beautiful device and the ip6 is no longer the only choice on premium devices. Both are awesome, my problem is now... Wth do I do with two phones I can't choose between?
  2. jamezr macrumors G5


    Aug 7, 2011
    Great review! You re enforced everything i have been reading about the Z3.
    I love TouchID on my IP6...i know I would miss it. But I also welcome the bigger screen and dust and water-proofing on the Z3. I think the 5 inch screen is my sweet spot.
    There are some great info on the camera over at XDA that might help.
    If the Z3 comes to the US (AT&T) it will be my next phone.
    Rumors are there is going to be an announcement from Sony on Oct 9th. Hopefully they will announce it is coming to the states then.....

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
  3. blairh macrumors 68040


    Dec 11, 2007
    OP what carrier are you using? Also have you tried listening to podcasts or YouTube vids on your Z3C? Any thoughts?

    I'm starting to think the Z3C is everything I'd want in a phone.
  4. JAlvi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2014
    I'm on att and you tube sounds good looks good as you would expect
  5. iosuser macrumors 6502a

    Mar 12, 2012
    I can't wait to get my hands on a Z3C. Are you getting good LTE speed from AT&T?

    I'm not trying to stir the pot some more, but the iPhone 6 camera (or, rather, the iPhone 6 processing of the photos) is absolutely horrible. Horrible smearing of details even in bright daylight shots. I used a Z1C for a couple of months. It is the best camera out of a phone I've ever used. I loved and exclusively used the dedicated camera button on the Z1C when taking a picture. It was much more snappy in locking focus than the iPhone 6.
  6. Fernandez21 macrumors 601


    Jun 16, 2010
    Nice review. Have you tried the Galaxy Alpha? I plan on using an iPhone 6 Plus with either a Galaxy Alpha or Z3c, and I really haven't seen any comparisons between those two phones.
  7. JAlvi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2014
    My z3c does not say lte it shows as 4G I've heard its the same as lte in the European market. Same speed as my iPhone notice no difference
  8. masands macrumors regular

    Sep 17, 2010
    I was torn between the Xperia Z3 and iPhone 6+. I decided to buy both and would later return one of the two. Let's start with the price difference:

    Xperia Z3 = $819 AUD + $100 for 128gb MicroSD. Total around $900.
    iPhone 6+ = $1249 for the 128gb model

    Price difference = $350

    In terms of storage, the Xperia wins straight away due to expandable memory.

    Design: Subjective but I prefer the iPhone's design. The Xperia reminded me of the iPhone 4S/5 and feels a bit blocky even with the rounded corners. iPhone is most comfortable to hold but is much bigger.

    Screen: iPhone 6+ is slightly better in terms colours etc. However, it demolishes the Xperia when it comes to touch latency. It definitely feels you are touching the objects on the screen when you use the iPhone. The Xperia doesn't feel as great and you can notice the small lag.

    OS: Android wins for me but iOS is still faster and some of the Metal games are awesome.

    TouchID: A feature worth $100 on its own. Definitely missed this on the Xperia Z3

    Durability: Xperia Z3 by a long shot. The iPhone needs to be babied or else you'll break it.

    Camera: iPhone 6+ but the sensor on the Xperia is supposed to be good. The software is crap on the Xperia.

    Battery Life: About the same but the iPhone 6+ has better standby. I got 3 days out of both phones. However, thanks to the customisable nature of Android, I could use apps like Juice defender to make the Xperia last longer.

    Overall, is the iPhone 6+ worth more? I think it is. You need to take into resale value too. However, the Xperia Z3 is still a killer phone.
  9. Savor Suspended


    Jun 18, 2010

    After seeing GSMArena test the Z3 battery life with generally 12 hrs Wi-Fi/video playback, I might now be leaning towards the Z3 Compact which can go 14-15 hrs if those claims are true.

    I am not really into "I need a small phone for one-handed use" crowd. If I wanted a smaller phone, I would go 3.5-4 inches at QVGA res just to use to watch my 360p videos while on the toilet. I'm fine with either Z3 sizes. But oh that sweet, sweet battery life. Z3C has them in spades.

    My only concerns -

    Glass rear - iPhone 4/4s might be my fav iPhone design and all-glass design ever but it wasn't the most practical for real world abuse. Z3C actually uses a plastic build like its predecessor but it could be prone to scratches very easily like the Z1C did. Sony better ditch the glass next year if they want this to be rugged outdoors.

    Price/availability - Chinese brands, Asus, and Nexus devices still offer better value. Also Sony still thinks they are Sony of yesteryear which made them lose billions. Prices need to drop and Sony better start catering more to the Western markets including US which they are generally invisible in when it comes to smartphones.

    Update cycles - Too fast. Only 6 months until a better one cpmes out. Kaz Hirai needs to pull back the reins.

    Other than that - Nice review! Seems like a #1 draft pick for me.
  10. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    The z3c seems like the most premium phone on the market right now under 5". I also prefer Sony's interface over TW on the alpha.
  11. samven582 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 2, 2009
    Its not coming out for ATT. ONly T-mobile and Verizon
  12. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    Nice comparison. Thanks for taking the time to write it up.
  13. Savor Suspended


    Jun 18, 2010
    Most people in this forum or on iPhone forum can be a bit wishy-washy on their platform. Z3C is more for people very sure Android is their preferred choice in the foreseeable future. I won't be shocked if others here went back to iOS because they are already accustomed to Apple's ecosystem and iOS. Habits are hard to break.

    With smartphones getting bigger every year, the Moto X (2013), iPhone 5s, and this Xperia Z3 Compact could be the last of their kind of a dying breed of sub-5 inch smartphones with excellent performance. Seeing the Moto X of this year got bigger, I wouldn't be shocked if the successor of the Z3C will go 5 inch/1080p as well.

    Xperia Z3 Compact could be the best 720p and last great compact smartphone ever made.
  14. boomdog macrumors regular


    Oct 3, 2013
    The most Easterly point of the UK
    I do understand where you're coming from and as with laptops/computers a bigger chassis does allow more room for better hardware so I do agree that the highest performing phones of the future will be 5"+ but there is still a huge market for pocket sized/small hand sized phones.

    I'm quite tall and have quite big hands and find my iPhone 5 really hard to use. Looking forward to my next upgrade.

    Great review BTW OP. I'm currently trying to decide whether to get an android. Might try picking up a Z1 which should be somewhat compatible to the iPhone 5 to see which I prefer
  15. Switchback666 macrumors 68000


    Nov 16, 2012
    Well i hope they stop going big soon, they will make 7' inch tablets obsolete lol
  16. jamezr macrumors G5


    Aug 7, 2011
    Really? How do you know?
  17. dba415 macrumors 6502

    Jun 18, 2011
    thanks for this. Hopefully the compact comes to the USA on T-Mobile.
  18. samven582 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 2, 2009
  19. JAlvi thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2014
    I actually just sold my Xperia z3c for a great profit. Only problem is I miss it. I have the iPhone 6 in hand but I really miss it. The thing was a powerhouse. The battery life was great. The speakers are no where near the quality or volume of the iphone 6. The iPhone 6 does not feel like a downgrade but neither did the Sony.
  20. MacSumo macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2013
    Hardware on other phones are nice and better than iPhones, usually. But, the software (Android, windows) feels clunky and old. I also just don't trust Sony on not screwing over the customer.

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19 October 3, 2014