Sony launches Xperia ZR waterproof, dustproof smartphone


Sony has announced a new smartphone in its Xperia line-up. Dubbed the Xperia ZR, it is set to be a waterproof handset and is equipped with a powerful camera, which seems to make the phone useful to those who might want to capture underwater video.

Visually, the Xperia ZR has quite a bit in common with the current Xperia Z and ZL, with the circular lock button on the middle of the side of the device, the volume rocker below that and a dedicated camera button near the bottom.

It sports a 4.6-inch HD reality display and is powered by Sony’s own Mobile Bravia engine 2, which the company claims uses the same contrast enhancement technology that is present in Sony’s range of Bravia TVs. The display panel is an OptiContrast panel, which is said to reduce reflections.

The Xperia ZR is powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor by Qualcomm. It also has 4G LTE capabilities. The performance on the handset should be good thanks to the the powerful processor along with 2GB of RAM.

Other than being another typical high-end smartphone, the main selling point of the Xperia ZR is the IP55 and IP58 certification. This means that the handset is waterproof and dustproof; it can be kept submerged in up to 1.5 metres in fresh water for up to 30 minutes.

On the camera front, it is equipped with a 13 megapixel camera with Sony’s Exmos RS for mobile sensor. This allows the phone to capture both videos and photos using high dynamic range (HDR). The burst mode on the camera can capture an unlimited number of images at 15 frames per second.

On the software side of things, one can expect the same things that is found in Sony’s other high-end offerings, such as the Xperia Z and the ZL. It has Sony’s own Walkman music player that gives access to all your downloaded music. There is also the Music Unlimited app, which gives access to a library of around 20 million songs. Similarly, the Videos Unlimited app gives access to a library of more than 150,000 movies and TV shows.

The Xperia ZR is expected to hit store shelves in Q2 of 2013 and will be available in black, white, pink and mint colour options.