Sony Xperia Z5 Compact

From MarcsHomepage

Random rants about my previous smartphone. I currently use a Google Pixel 2XL.

It is running Android 7.0, it is pretty much a mainstream-device, not hacked (no intention of doing so as long as the warranty lasts and/or Sony provides decent software updates) so there will be no hard-to-find secrets on this page.

Which they stopped doing around end of 2017. Even LineageOS dropped the device from it's list of supported phones, so EOL.

No updates for this page any more.

Things I like

  • Small
  • Fast
  • Battery lasts comparably long (2 days or so)
  • Good software updates support (so far, Sony apparently takes care of its phones -however, no indication, that there will be an update to Android O).

Things I don't like

  • Bloatware can't be fully deinstalled (I knew that)
  • 2 GB RAM (I don't see why there would be an issues to put in 3 GB like in the non-compact Z5). However, this is no real issue so far for me.
  • Button layout (camera and sound are in the wrong place). Same for the power button sort of (if you want to use the phone with a standard car or bike clamp-holder). Not too anoying, but...
  • The standard keyboard is sometimes hard to use (due to the "small" screen). Kind of anyoing, but as I dislike touchscreens anyways and there is no decent phone with a hardware keyboard out there...
  • Android (and Android apps in general) feel like an excuse to spam people with advertisements and nag-screens. WTF? Even paid apps sometimes still show adverts or start being anoying by asking for Play-store ratings etc.
  • Many apps (also well-known and high-rated ones) are not exactly stable
  • The onboard video app crashes reproducibly when filming for more than ~ 1:30 while storing the video on the SD-card. As this is the default Sony app, and Sony is quite proud of their video and photo capabilities, this is a shame
  • The phone died recently for no good reason and is away for repair now. We will see, if things improve (i.e. if it was just a faulty device and not a problem with Sony-style Android phones in general). After being repaired replaced, it is much more stable. The video-app-crashing still occurs though.
  • Apparently, there are no updates any more as of the end of 2017. Even not security updates to fix things like WiFi issues related to KRACK. Thank you Sony.

Things which might have prevented me from buying the phone had I known them before

Yes, I could have send it back after finding out, but I was too lazy, and overall it is a decent phone -as advertised.

  • SD-Card support: No Adoptable storage mode available. So -no app storage on the card. Also, some apps seem to have issues using the card for data storage. The reader is also quite slow apparently. Crap. The phone has 32 GB internal storage, so no too big deal, but still...
  • adb and local access is not very well supported -apparently, Sony took great pains to actually prevent people from doing local backups. Would have been a showstopper had I known that before. Helium backup does not work reliably, I have not tested other tools (most require root).
  • Camera is good -for a smartphone-camera (emphasis on "smartphone) -in other words, it is quite crappy. No big deal, I use a DSLR if I need decent quality. The phone camera might be good enough for the occasional snapshot under good light conditions.
  • There are issues with voice calls on that line of phones (also seems to affect other Sony Z5 series): See Basically, the other party during a voice call can't hear me any more all of a sudden (for around 5-10 seconds). This is extremely annoying and there appears to be no fix for this so far.
  • Video recording issues.


DO NOT BUY (it is not on sale anymore anyways).