The Sony Xperia Z1 is like the bigger, flashier brother of the first Xperia Z, sporting a faster processor, a fancier camera, and a sturdier metal chassis.
It is however, still recognizably similar to the Z in terms of the software it runs and in terms of the design it took.
The Z1 is waterproof and dustproof, the USB, microSD, and micro SIM ports are all hidden beneath tight rubber stoppers that can be popped open with a fingernail. The power button is located at the right side of the device instead of the traditional top right side of the phone.
The body of the phone is made of aluminum, with its edges rounded off to give it a gentler, colder feel. The front and back of the phone seems to be made of glass, with the sides being made out of hard plastic. The sides extend over the glass faces of the phone by just over a millimeter, which acts as a shock absorber in the case that it gets dropped.
The Z1 still features the 5-inch screen with a full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution found in the Xperia Z as well as the same 2GB of RAM. The processor of the Z1 is a more powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 quad-core 2.2GHz Krait 400 processor. It is noticeably faster than the Z because of the upgraded specs.
The 20.7-megapixel camera complements the 1080p display of the phone, offering sharp and crisp outdoor shots. Indoor shots suffer in quality because of the lack of a flash but updating to Android 4.3 seems to fix the issue somewhat.
The phone however, is riddled with numerous extra features and services that Sony requires the user to sign-up for, or disclaimers and agreements to agree to. One such feature is the Music Unlimited service which constantly reminds the user to input credit card details to activate the product. The constant nagging is not a great feature to have and may get on users' nerves.
Overall, the Z1 is certainly an upgrade from the Z in terms of the camera, and the processor speed and is a viable option