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Sony Xperia 1 V: what we want to see

The Sony Xperia 1 IV was in many ways one of the most interesting phones of 2022, as it has features that you won’t find anywhere else.

But it’s also a flawed phone and one with an extremely high price, so there are certainly changes that we want to see for the Sony Xperia 1 V, and we’ve listed these below.

Before that though we’ve included details on when the Sony Xperia 1 V might launch, how much it might cost, and what specs and features it might have. We haven’t heard much yet, but as more leaks and rumors roll in, we’ll be sure to keep this article updated.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The next Sony flagship phone
  • When is it out? Probably mid-2023
  • How much will it cost? Expect a very high price

Sony Xperia 1 V: release date and price

Sony hasn’t been terribly consistent with its Xperia 1 line releases, so we can’t be too sure when the Sony Xperia 1 V will land, especially in the absence of any rumors.

For reference, the Sony Xperia 1 IV was announced on May 11 of 2022, then hit UK stores on June 16 – but the US isn’t getting it until September 1, and Australia isn’t getting it at all.

The announcement of the Sony Xperia 1 III was only slightly earlier the previous year, in April 2021 – but the phone didn’t actually go on sale anywhere until August. For the two models before that we saw a February announcement and a May on-sale date.

So what can we take from this? The Sony Xperia 1 V will probably be announced in the first half of 2022. Potentially in May since that would be a year after the Xperia 1 IV, but that’s far from guaranteed.

The actual release date is even tougher to guess at, since there’s sometimes a long delay after the announcement, but some regions might get it in or around June, and Australia probably won’t get it at all.

For price, the Sony Xperia 1 IV costs $1,599 in the US, which gets you a model with 512GB of storage. In the UK there’s only a 256GB version available, and this costs £1,299.99.

So the Sony Xperia 1 V might have a similar price, but we’re not sure. Hopefully, it won’t be any more expensive anyway, as the Xperia 1 IV is already one of the most expensive non-foldable phones you can buy.

A Sony Xperia 1 IV in someone's hand, with foliage in the background

The Sony Xperia 1 IV is seriously expensive (Image credit: Future)

Sony Xperia 1 V: news and leaks

There aren’t many Sony Xperia 1 V leaks yet, but we have now seen a leaked image that purportedly shows the back of the phone. You can see this below and it looks a lot like the rear of a Sony Xperia 1 IV, except that this time all the camera sensors are housed in the camera block.

There are changes to the selection of available lenses and sensors too. It’s still a triple-lens camera but those lenses look bigger, so some or all of them could be new.

There’s also now a hole for what’s presumably a microphone, but there’s no sign of the RGB IR sensor or the ToF (time-of-flight) sensor found on the Xperia 1 IV. We would however take this image with a pinch of salt.

A leaked image reportedly showing the back of the Sony Xperia 1 V

(Image credit: Speckles)

Beyond that, there is evidence that the camera might be a major focus for Sony.

For one thing, Sony usually puts a lot of focus on the cameras of its flagships, but on top of that the company has said that it expects the quality of still images from smartphones to exceed those of DSLRs by the end of 2024.

That suggests it’s expecting big smartphone camera improvements in the next couple of years, and some of them will likely be evident in the Sony Xperia 1 V.

One such improvement might be a new sensor – possibly a new 1-inch sensor the company has unveiled, which has already been used in the Xiaomi 12s Ultra among other phones.

Sony Xperia 1 V: what we want to see

There are a few key things Sony can do to make the Xperia 1 V significantly better than the Sony Xperia 1 IV. They include the following.

1. A lower price

A Sony Xperia 1 IV from the back, in someone's hand

The Sony Xperia 1 IV is prohibitively pricey (Image credit: Future)

The Sony Xperia 1 IV is an astonishingly expensive phone, coming in at an even higher price than the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and iPhone 13 Pro Max.

While it has some specs and features that Samsung and Apple’s phones lack, it’s also inferior in some ways, and certainly priced in such a way that it’s never likely to be a truly mainstream handset.

So for the Sony Xperia 1 V we want to see a lower price. This will obviously still be an awfully expensive phone, but if Sony can knock a couple of hundred dollars/pounds off the price then it could shift a lot more units.

2. A better fingerprint sensor

Paying big money doesn’t guarantee you a good fingerprint sensor, and such is the case with the Sony Xperia 1 IV, which has a sensor that in our review we found to fail more times than it succeeded.

On top of that, the phone doesn’t even have an in-screen one – it’s side-mounted, which feels a bit dated. So for the Sony Xperia 1 V we want the fingerprint sensor to be much more reliable, and preferably also to be built into the display.

3. More polished software

A Sony Xperia 1 IV from the front, outside with trees in the background

The Sony Xperia 1 IV was buggier than we’d like (Image credit: Future)

In our review of the Xperia 1 IV we found that the software wasn’t quite as polished as the hardware, with apps crashing, an unfortunate amount of bloatware, and – worst of all – video playback simply not functioning on some of the video recording apps.

This stuff can all be fixed with updates of course, but for the Sony Xperia 1 V we want a slick and smooth experience out of the box.

4. Faster charging

The Sony Xperia 1 IV supports charging at up to 30W, which isn’t terrible – in fact, it has Apple and most Samsung phones beat, but it pales in comparison to many other handsets, some of which can now reach up to 150W.

So for the Sony Xperia 1 V we want a charging power boost. We’re thinking at least 60W, but the more the better, so we can juice the phone up quickly.

5. Longer distance zoom

One of the star features of the Sony Xperia 1 IV is its continuous optical zoom – letting you zoom to anything between 3.5x and 5.2x. This isn’t something you’ll find on other phones, but with such a fancy feature we’d like to see Sony make the most of it and increase the zoom level to around 10x, like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra.

That phone offers optical zoom at 3x or 10x, but if Sony can offer optical zoom at every level within that range, then it will have Samsung – and every other phone maker – beat on that front.

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