Sony unveils new waterproof smartphone and SmartWatch

Sony introduced the world to the new Xperia Z Ultra and SmartWatch 2 at the Mobile Asia Expo in Shanghai

26 Jun 2013


The glitzy launches just keep on coming this month with Sony the latest to show off new tech - a giant waterproof smartphone and new SmartWatch.

Xperia Z Ultra(Credit: Sony)

Sony introduced the world to the new Xperia Z Ultra at the Mobile Asia Expo in Shanghai. The waterproof phone boasts a 6.4-inch screen and runs on the Android operating system.

Sony claims the handset has the biggest display and is the thinnest large-screen smartphone on the market.

The Xperia Z Ultra is 6.5mm (0.26in) thick and Pierre Perron, president of Sony Mobile Europe, said the device would "blur the boundaries between the phone and the tablet".

Waterproof phone

The new phone follows the original Xperia Z, a 5-inch smartphone which Sony released earlier this year.

The original Xperia Z is also waterproof, however it needs a flap over its headphone socket to protect from water damage - with the Ultra there's no longer any need for this.

If you're wondering just how far underwater the new Xperia Z Ultra can be taken, we're just about to tell you. 

Sony says the Xperia Z Ultra can be submerged to a depth of 1.5m in freshwater for up to half an hour. Also, you'll be able to take pictures and shoot video while below the surface.  

Sony Xperia Z Ultra In Water

(Credit: Sony)

Lost your stylus? Use a pen or pencil instead

Another nifty feature is that the phone's screen also recognises sketches or notes written with a regular pencil or metal-tipped pen. Of course, if you prefer to use the stylus that works too.

It's nippy too. It boasts a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor - the fastest one around, according to Sony.

Calum MacDougall, Sony's director of Xperia marketing, said: "The Xperia Z Ultra is the most exciting revolution in large-screen smartphone entertainment devices with both the slimmest and largest full HD smartphone display in the world that is second to none."

The phone also features a 1080p resolution screen, with a function that upscales lower definition content.

While for those of us who love taking the odd 'selfie' here and there, an 8megapixel camera should ensure you're looking sharp.

Sony says the battery will deliver 11 hours of talk time and 120 hours of audio playback.

It's set to be launched in Europe in September.

Sony gets smart with its new SmartWatch 2 

The past few months have seen lots of headlines and speculation around so-called smartwatches, and Sony used the Shanghai event to unveil its latest one.

Sony says its SmartWatch 2 is a "second screen" for any Android phone worn on the wrist - it comes in sleek aluminium and stainless steel and features NFC technology and Bluetooth for easy pairing with your phone.

Sony Smart Watch 2

(Credit: Sony)

Stay on top of incoming messages - from your wrist

It connects to our mobile phones and notifies us when we receive messages and calls. Although you can't make a call fromSmartWatch 2, you can answer and reject them.

With most modern smartphones coming with plenty of storage, we're increasingly using them to listen to tunes.

Sony knows this, and has given its SmartWatch a cool volume control feature so when you're listening to tunes via your phone you can turn it up or down by merely reaching for your wrist.

Apps for photos and fitness

It also boasts a stack of apps - including one which allows the watch to be used as a remote camera shutter for when the urge to take a photo grabs you. Altogether, Sony said more than 200 apps would be available, including ones to help you burn off those excess pounds.

Here's what Sony has to say about the SmartWatch.

"A typical smartphone user reaches for their phone many times a day to read messages, check the time, view and make social media updates, use their favourite apps, take photos, listen to music and play mobile games.

"SmartWatch 2 addresses this need by offering you a convenient touch screen device so you no longer need to remove your phone from your pocket or bag."