Sony Xperia go review: Get out, get wet

GSMArena team, 31 July 2012.
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Good connectivity

The Sony Xperia go has quad-band 2G and dual-band 3G. Mobile data speeds are boosted by 14.4Mbps HSDPA and 5.76Mbps HSUPA.

Local connectivity is covered by Wi-Fi b/g/n with DLNA, Wi-Fi Direct and hotspot functionality, and you can easily play media (photos, videos, music) from DLNA-enabled storage devices or push content from your phone to a DLNA TV or music player.

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The Connected Devices app handles the DLNA functionality

Stereo Bluetooth is version 3.0. To complete the tally of available options, the Xperia go features a microUSB port for charging and data transfers and luckily, it's is among the few new Xperias to feature an expandable storage option via microSD.

The Xperia go lacks NFC support and also doesn't come with Sony's media remote app preinstalled. ANT+ wireless technology for communicating to various sports accessories is not supported as well.

Browsing

The Sony Xperia go is slightly behind the high-end curb. It features the Android Gingerbread browser, which isn't as productive in terms of JavaScript performance as the ICS one as not as fast as Chrome for Android.

The user interface of the browser is simple, with almost no visible chrome by default. Once the page loads, all you see is the URL bar and the bookmark button at the top of the screen. Once you zoom in and pan around though even that disappears (scroll to the top or press menu to bring it back).

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Xperia go web browser

The browser supports double tap and pinch zooming, along with the dedicated virtual zoom buttons. There's text re-flow, which reformats text so that it best fits on the screen.

The browsing performance is excellent - panning, zooming and the text reflow are snappy.

The minimalist UI is still very capable - hit the menu key and six keys pop up. You can open a new tab, switch tabs, refresh the page, go forward, and open bookmarks. The last button reveals even more options (text copying, find on page, etc.).

One of the important features in the web browser is the full Flash 11 support. YouTube videos played smoothly all the way up to 720p - no dropped frames, audio lag or video artifacts. Flash games played trouble free too.

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Playing YouTube videos in the browser Flash games work too

Great organizing skills

The Sony Ericsson Xperia go comes with a solid set of organizing options, including a document viewer.

The app in question is OfficeSuite and it has support for viewing document files (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF, including the Office 2007 versions). For editing, you will need to get the paid app.

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The OfficeSuite reader

Reading documents is okay on the 3.5" screen and panning is blazing fast. There's a built-in file browser and cloud storage integration (Google, Dropbox, Box).

The calendar has three different types of view - daily, weekly and monthly. The lower section of the screen is reserved for a list of upcoming events. Adding a new event is quick and easy, and you can also set an alarm to act as a reminder.

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The organizer centerpiece - the calendar

The Calendar also pulls info on upcoming events from your Facebook account. Facebook events appear just like regular calendar entries but you can't edit them on the phone, they are read-only.

There is a calculator aboard. It is nicely touch optimized - the buttons are really big and easy to hit. You can expand advanced functions (trigonometry, logarithms) by turning the phone in landscape.

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Regular Calculator Scientific Calculator

The alarm clock app supports multiple alarms, each with its own start and repeat time. The Alarms app can also work as a desk clock - you have a big toggle for the brightness, as well as weather info and shortcuts to gallery slideshow and the music player.

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The Clock Creating alarm

The app has also offers a World clock along with stopwatch and timer functionality.

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World clock Stopwatch Timer

The Power Saver app helps you extend your battery life by toggling things like Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth screen brightness, auto sync and background data on and off automatically when the battery charge falls below a certain user-defined threshold.

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The Power Saver app

There are three presets in total. The other two are a manual power saver and a timed saver. The latter can, say, keep all those power-hungry features off for the night and turn them back on in the morning.

There are also several fitness apps pre-installed on the phone - such as Adidas miCoach or the pedometer-tracking WalkMate, but these are freely available from the Play store anyway so they do not make that much of a difference for the Xperia go.

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