Sony Xperia M4 Aqua Review: The Lookalike: Display, Battery Life, Connectivity

By 11:53 Sun, 15 Aug 2021 Comments


Display

The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is equipped with a pretty simple IPS Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) panel with a resolution of 720 x 1280 pixels. With a diagonal of 5.0-inches, it sits correct between the Z3 Compact with its 4.6-inches and the Z3, which is slightly bigger, at 5.2-inches. Both the M4 Aqua and the Z3 Compact have 720p screens, which is yet another similarity that pits the two devices against one another on the market.

The Z3 Compact does, however, boast a slightly higher ppi rating, as well as a better screen-to-body ratio. Luckily, the M4 Aqua does have the added benefit of Sony's Triluminos display technology and Bravia tech that enhances colors and contrast by clever processing.


The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is fitted with an IPS Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) panel with an RGB matrix. It really doesn't see all that impressive on paper, but our test reveal that this is one of the better Sony panel we have ever seen. It has a relatively high maximum brightness.

Blacks are not as deep as we like them, but that's just nitpicking. Viewing angles are also superb, with almost no distortion in the image and only a slight loss of brightness.

Display test

50% brightness

100% brightness

Black, cd/m2

White, cd/m2

Contrast ratio

Black, cd/m2

White, cd/m2

Contrast ratio

Sony Xperia M4 Aqua 0.17 176 1012 0.74 828 1115

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact - - - 0.77 725 942

Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4 0 201 ∞ 0 404 ∞

Samsung Galaxy S5 mini 0 226 ∞ 0 432 ∞

Samsung Galaxy Alpha 0 228 ∞ 0 456 ∞

Samsung Galaxy A5 0 191 ∞ 0 398 ∞

Samsung Galaxy A7 0 175 ∞ 0 349 ∞

HTC Desire 820 0.18 235 1299 0.45 598 1327

ZTE Blade S6 0.26 248 986 0.46 457 946

Nokia Lumia 830 0.21 223 1087 0.49 533 1078

Nokia Lumia 1020 0 172 ∞ 0 398 ∞

LG G2 0.1 149 1522 0.45 667 1495

Huawei Ascdiscontinue P7 0.13 101 807 0.79 668 843



Sunlight legibility is fine at max brightness, so we are quite excited with the display and its performance.

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Sunlight contrast ratio

  • Nokia 808 PureView

    4.698

  • Samsung Galaxy E7

    4.485

  • Samsung Galaxy A3

    4.241

  • Samsung Galaxy S6

    4.124

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 4

    4.033

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3

    3.997

  • Apple iPhone 5

    3.997

  • Samsung Galaxy A5

    3.895

  • Apple iPhone 6

    3.838

  • Motorola Moto X (2014)

    3.816

  • Samsung Galaxy Note Edge

    3.799

  • Samsung Galaxy A7

    3.679

  • Oppo R5

    3.678

  • Samsung Galaxy K zoom

    3.675

  • Nokia Lumia 930

    3.567

  • Apple iPhone 5s

    3.565

  • Samsung Galaxy S5

    3.549

  • Nokia Lumia 735

    3.547

  • Motorola Nexus 6

    3.543

  • Alcatel Idol X+

    3.527

  • Apple iPhone 5c

    3.512

  • Samsung Galaxy Alpha

    3.509

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo

    3.487

  • LG G Flex2

    3.465

  • YotaPhone 2

    3.453

  • Motorola RAZR MAXX

    3.42

  • Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III

    3.419

  • Samsung Galaxy S5 Active

    3.406

  • Nokia Lumia 925

    3.402

  • Gionee Elife S5.5

    3.386

  • Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4

    3.352

  • Samsung Omnia W

    3.301

  • Samsung Galaxy S5 mini

    3.174

  • Samsung I9000 Galaxy S

    3.155

  • Samsung Ativ S

    3.129

  • Samsung I9190 Galaxy S4 mini

    3.127

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 zoom

    3.118

  • Nokia N9

    3.069

  • Apple iPhone 6 Plus

    3.023

  • Samsung Galaxy Note

    2.97

  • Samsung Galaxy Premier

    2.958

  • Sony Xperia Z1

    2.95

  • HTC One S

    2.901

  • Lenovo S90 Sisley

    2.892

  • Samsung I8730 Galaxy Express

    2.861

  • BlackBerry Q10

    2.856

  • Samsung I9100 Galaxy S II

    2.832

  • HTC Desire Eye

    2.815

  • Gionee Elife S5.1

    2.812

  • Samsung Galaxy S II Plus

    2.801

  • BlackBerry Z30

    2.79

  • Meizu MX4 Pro

    2.765

  • Sony Xperia ZR

    2.672

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue P1

    2.655

  • Sony Xperia Z3

    2.618

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

    2.616

  • Sony Xperia T3

    2.609

  • BlackBerry Passport

    2.595

  • Nokia Lumia 900

    2.562

  • Motorola Moto G 4G

    2.546

  • HTC One Max

    2.537

  • Nokia Lumia 720

    2.512

  • HTC One

    2.504

  • Sony Xperia M4 Aqua

    2.503

  • Motorola Moto G

    2.477

  • vivo Xshot

    2.465

  • Sony Xperia Z

    2.462

  • Xiaomi Mi 4

    2.424

  • Samsung Galaxy S III mini

    2.422

  • Lenovo Vibe Z2 Pro

    2.416

  • LG G Flex

    2.407

  • HTC Desire 820

    2.372

  • HTC One (M8)

    2.371

  • Motorola RAZR i

    2.366

  • Meizu MX4

    2.366

  • Meizu m1 note

    2.362

  • Sony Xperia ZL

    2.352

  • HTC One M9

    2.334

  • HTC One (M8) for Windows

    2.291

  • Oppo Find 7a

    2.279

  • Alcatel One Touch Hero

    2.272

  • Apple iPhone 4S

    2.269

  • HTC Desire 600 dual sim

    2.262

  • Nokia Asha 311

    2.25

  • Xiaomi Mi Note

    2.234

  • Motorola Moto G (2014)

    2.233

  • LG Nexus 5

    2.228

  • Nokia Lumia 820

    2.193

  • HTC One (E8)

    2.185

  • Oppo N3

    2.181

  • Nokia Lumia 920

    2.17

  • Huawei Honor 6

    2.169

  • HTC One X

    2.158

  • Asus Zenfone 2 ZE551ML

    2.149

  • LG Aka

    2.145

  • Nokia N8

    2.144

  • Nokia Lumia 620

    2.142

  • Archos 50 Diamond

    2.134

  • Nokia 515

    2.134

  • HTC Desire 500

    2.129

  • Sony Xperia C3 Dual

    2.12

  • Sony Xperia acro S

    2.119

  • Xiaomi Redmi Note

    2.119

  • Nokia Lumia 1020

    2.103

  • Oppo Find 5

    2.088

  • Sony Xperia SL

    2.078

  • Nokia Lumia 630

    2.056

  • BlackBerry Z10

    2.051

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue Mate7

    2.024

  • Samsung I9295 Galaxy S4 Active

    2.022

  • Apple iPhone 4

    2.016

  • HTC One mini

    2.003

  • Xiaomi Mi 3

    2.001

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue P7

    1.992

  • LG G2

    1.976

  • Sony Xperia E4g

    1.972

  • OnePlus One

    1.961

  • Oppo R819

    1.957

  • Sony Ericsson Xperia ray

    1.955

  • Lenovo Vibe X2

    1.952

  • Sony Xperia Z2

    1.944

  • Sony Xperia E3

    1.943

  • Nokia Lumia 1320

    1.941

  • HTC One mini 2

    1.94

  • Samsung Galaxy Camera

    1.938

  • Samsung Galaxy Grand Prime

    1.935

  • Sony Xperia J

    1.932

  • Acer CloudMobile S500

    1.931

  • ZTE Blade S6

    1.927

  • LG Nexus 4

    1.926

  • LG G Pro 2

    1.922

  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

    1.913

  • Nokia Asha 308

    1.911

  • HTC Butterfly 2

    1.905

  • Sony Xperia T

    1.894

  • Nokia Lumia 830

    1.887

  • HTC Desire X

    1.878

  • HTC Butterfly

    1.873

  • HTC Windows Phone 8X

    1.873

  • HTC Butterfly S

    1.867

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue P6

    1.865

  • Huawei Ascdiscontinue Mate

    1.845

  • LG G2 mini

    1.838

  • LG G3

    1.82

  • Nokia Lumia 1520

    1.813

  • HTC Desire 616 dual sim

    1.797

  • Sony Xperia V

    1.792

  • HTC Desire 816

    1.783

  • Sony Xperia Z1 Compact

    1.772

  • HTC Desire 700 dual sim

    1.769

  • Sony Xperia U

    1.758

  • Meizu MX3

    1.754

  • LG Optimus G

    1.753

  • Sony Xperia T2 Ultra

    1.74

  • Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

    1.735

  • Acer Liquid Jade S

    1.734

  • Sony Xperia SP

    1.733

  • Oppo Find 7

    1.691

  • LG Optimus 4X HD

    1.691

  • HTC One V

    1.685

  • BlackBerry Q5

    1.682

  • LG Optimus Vu

    1.68

  • Motorola Moto E (2nd Gen)

    1.675

  • Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9

    1.672

  • LG Optimus GJ

    1.666

  • LG Optimus 3D Max

    1.658

  • HTC Desire V

    1.646

  • Samsung Galaxy Xcover 2

    1.632

  • Samsung Galaxy Ace 3

    1.622

  • Jolla Jolla

    1.605

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra

    1.578

  • Sony Xperia go

    1.577

  • Samsung Galaxy Ace 2 I8160

    1.566

  • Samsung Galaxy Core

    1.563

  • LG Optimus G Pro

    1.552

  • Motorola Moto E

    1.545

  • LG Optimus 3D

    1.542

  • Nokia Asha 302

    1.537

  • Samsung Galaxy Core Prime

    1.507

  • BlackBerry Curve 9320

    1.488

  • Sony Xperia M

    1.473

  • Oppo N1

    1.47

  • Sony Xperia E4

    1.467

  • Meizu MX 4-core

    1.462

  • Nokia Lumia 610

    1.432

  • Samsung Galaxy S Duos

    1.4

  • Sony Xperia M2

    1.393

  • Samsung Galaxy Grand Neo

    1.393

  • Microsoft Lumia 535

    1.393

  • Samsung Galaxy Grand 2

    1.38

  • Sony Xperia E1

    1.372

  • Nokia Lumia 625

    1.371

  • Gigabyte GSmart G1355

    1.361

  • Sony Xperia L

    1.351

  • Xiaomi Redmi 1S

    1.35

  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 5.8

    1.35

  • HTC Desire 510

    1.34

  • Sony Xperia M2 Aqua

    1.331

  • Sony Xperia miro

    1.324

  • Samsung I9082 Galaxy Grand

    1.321

  • Samsung I8530 Galaxy Beam

    1.315

  • Xiaomi Redmi 2

    1.311

  • HTC Desire C

    1.3

  • Nokia X

    1.291

  • Sony Xperia C

    1.283

  • Nokia Asha 503

    1.281

  • Nokia Asha 501

    1.27

  • LG Optimus L7

    1.269

  • Nokia Lumia 510

    1.268

  • Samsung Galaxy Fame

    1.245

  • LG Optimus L9

    1.227

  • Meizu MX

    1.221

  • Samsung Galaxy Young

    1.22

  • Sony Xperia E

    1.215

  • Nokia XL

    1.204

  • Sony Xperia E dual

    1.203

  • Asus Memo Pad 7 ME176C

    1.198

  • Samsung Galaxy Pocket

    1.18

  • Nokia Asha 305

    1.178

  • Nokia Asha 306

    1.175

  • Sony Xperia neo L

    1.169

  • Sony Xperia tipo

    1.166

  • Nokia Lumia 520

    1.161

  • Samsung S6802 Galaxy Ace Duos

    1.148

  • Samsung Galaxy mini 2

    1.114

M4 Aqua battery life

Sony has put a 2,400mAh battery inside the Xperia M4 Aqua, which is smaller than both the Xperia Z3 Compact and the Z3 flagship. The Snapdragon 615 should be more power-efficient than the more powerful 800 series in the other devices, so battery life might not be so dependent on battery power alone.

We ran our battery test with the battery-saving STAMINA mode off. But, even without the extra help, the handset scored a whopping overall endurance rating of 81 hours. This is quite impressive and surpasses the M2 Aqua by a fine ten hours. It is even up to par with the Xperia Z3, which boasts a rating of 85 hours. Still, however, it is hard to acquire anywhere near the Z3 Compact and its outrageous 101 hours. If you are keen on battery life, the M4 Aqua definitely doesn't disappoint, but the Z3 Compact is undoubtedly even better.

Our pre-production unit did have some problems with endurance, but, everything seems to be cleared up now. Since then, standby time has doubled and so has browsing time. The bundled chrome browser now performs wonderfully, as expected.

The battery pack itself is not user-removable, which seems to be the common case with a lot of current devices. At least, the M4 Aqua has a fine reason for not breaking the tight seal on the back, seeing how the device is meant to feel at home in water.


Regardless of the battery life we'll get, you can always rely on the Power Saver - now part of the settings menu. It helps you extdiscontinue your battery life by toggling things like Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth classy screen brightness, auto sync and background data on and off automatically, as soon as the battery charge falls below a certain user-defined threshold. You can also choose to automatically turn Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) off if there is no known Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) network in range or switch off mobile data when the classy screen is off, and more.

Our proprietary score also includes a standby battery draw test, which is not featured in our battery test scorecard but is calculated in the total endurance rating.

Our battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you want to learn more about it.

Connectivity

The Sony Xperia M4 Aqua comes in single and dual SIM flavors. Both the M4 Aqua and the M4 Aqua Dual offer quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE/HSDPA support. LTE support is also present, courtesy of the Snapdragon 615 SoC except for one of the submodels (E2312) of the Sony Xperia M4 Aqua Dual, which is 3G only.

Local connectivity features dial-band Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) b/g/n and Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) Direct. There is also support for Bluetooth 4.1 with A2DP. Satellite navigation is also a given, with additional A-GPS and GLONASS support. The Xperia M4 Aqua also has an Frequency Modulation (FM) radio with RDS. It doesn't offer an IR port, but it does come with NFC.

There is a microUniversal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0 port for charging and data connections and now, thanks to special coating, it is no longer covered by a flap. Media transfer mode is supported for accessing the phone's built-in memory and microSD card over the Universal Serial Bus (USB) cable. Universal Serial Bus (USB) host functionality is also present.

The microUniversal Serial Bus (USB) port doesn't have any TV-out functionality, unlike the Z3 Compact, which supports MHL, but if you own a compatible HDTV, you can output your phone's classy screen wirelessly via the Miracast protocol or Sony's Xperia Connectivity Throw option.

The app also lets you share your media over DLNA by creating a media server, as well as connect to a PlayStation DUALSHOCK 3 (or 4) wireless controller.


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