No fingerprint sensor in US Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact models [Update]

by XB on 15th January 2016

in Xperia Z5 series


No fingerprint sensor US Xperia Z5At least a couple of tech websites are reporting that the Xperia Z5 and Xperia Z5 Compact handsets, which are due to launch early next month in the United States, will be stripped of one of its key features – the fingerprint sensor. Both Computerworld and The Verge have heard from a Sony US spokesperson that fingerprint technology will not feature in the US-bound Xperia Z5 models.

To back this up, Sony has removed any reference to fingerprint technology on the US Xperia Z5 product page. However, somewhat confusingly, the US page for the Xperia Z5 Compact has the fingerprint sensor still listed in its spec-sheet. We’re perplexed on the reasons behind any removal of the sensor, but we have reached out to our contacts at Sony to verify this information and will update the post once we hear back.

Update: Sony Mobile has confirmed to us that the news is true, with the rationale for omitting the fingerprint scanner as a “business decision.”

Thanks Katie!

  • Srijan Chawla

    Well at least there’s still some consistency in Sony, way to screw up your sales yet again in the United States ;P

  • Mehmet

    Don’t buy an Xperia Z5 Compact, the phone is so laggy, so many bugs! Even the last update didn’t help, me and a lot of other users claimed this issues but Sony is still sleeping, shame on you SONY!

  • Jesús López Sotelo

    I’m feeling that US laws are behind this (if true) for some reason.

  • pipslvr

    That would be so bizarre!

  • Vjekoslav Andric

    Most certainly.
    there are some foul games going on in US concerning Sony mobile

  • Oldseemployee

    The reason the fingerprint scanner was removed is because of licensing… Sony mobile either didn’t get or didn’t want to pay for the licensing in the US

  • subm

    You can buy the international version with the fingerprint scanner

  • ramuk

    What an idiotic move. First they bring their phones months after their release date then they delete one of the key selling features. It like they are practically saying ” Please Just Don’t buy our phone.” With S7 and G5 announcing next month Sony mobile is just wasting their money. Sony mobile is ruining by the DUMB executives.

  • laci_csk

    yeah, but is more expensive. We americans dont have much money like you, rest of the world.

  • jonyah

    Well, that’s a farce. You can usually import them for less (currently around $550 to import compared to $600). But this is consistent with Sony screwing up the US launches yet again. I don’t really care for a fingerprint sensor, though I’d still import over getting one here. I’m sure it’ll have a few bands removed as well.

    Unfortunately, they’ll never get any real traction unless they get serious about the US. Oh well, I’m growing tired of my Z3 anyway. Unless they’ve fixed the speakers, including the ear speaker, so I can actually hear things, then it’s just ruined the whole phone. I’m put to shame when my fiance’ pulls out her G3 and plays a song or turns on the speaker. I can barely hear mine.

  • WilliamTell13

    Wow. It’s really as if Sony wants their phones to fall in the U.S. They’ve been doing a great job of making that happen!

  • Vinícius Azzolin

    Maybe, is just an excuse to give a hype to the z6, since they said that with it they will start paying attention on the US market.

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  • Raj Singh

    Inconsistent brand. No wonder people don’t buy Sony phones.

  • Cakefish

    Feel sorry for the yanks. I love my Z5 Compact but I wouldn’t have bought it if Sony had treated us Brits in this manner. It’s bad enough that the phones are releasing at a time when Galaxy S7 is just around the corner, but removing such a key feature is the quickest way to guarantee no American sales.

  • What specific licensing would they need to get for the fingerprint reader tech in the US?

  • Cakefish

    They’re doing well here in Britain because they’re actually trying here. I’m not surprised Americans aren’t buying Sony phones when they’re getting treated like this.

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  • Cakefish

    Yes, the Galaxy S7 will kill any chance of the Xperia Z5 selling in the US.

  • haxona

    This is definitely a region issue and not their own decision to make. There is no point in removing a feature as big as this just because you are going to sell in a new region. They need to pay more for manufacturing two different sets of phones now and I dont really think they would do that if they werent forced by something

  • Aldi Wan Kenobi

    This just doesn’t make any sense!!

  • Chaturanaga Manchanayake

    Then let’s just complain about how bad your sales are LOL, Way to go Sony. I mean who take these decisions?

  • Fadi Obaya

    Probably some Apple license…

  • Gunboat_Diplo

    Link or GTFO

  • Gunboat_Diplo

    “probably”
    We can all go home. Fadi is “probably” sure about this.

  • Gunboat_Diplo

    which laws? or are you just pulling this from your back end? Lots of phones in the US have fingerprint scanners.

  • Gunboat_Diplo

    I admire your tinfoil hat.

  • Chris

    This is absolutely ridiculous. Why the #### would they remove such a great feature from a flagship? Unreal! Very disappointed in this move Sony.

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  • Katie Pollard

    Well add Android Police to the list of outlets who received confirmation directly from Sony. This is such a stupid “business decision” by Sony. It just baffles the mind. Definitely sticking with the international model that includes the fingerprint sensor.

    http://www.androidpolice.com/2016/01/15/sony-xperia-z5-variants-in-the-us-will-not-have-a-fingerprint-reader/

  • Jesús López Sotelo

    Sony has always had segmentation in their products and that’s due to regional laws or something.

    I’m not affirming my statement as true, I’m just sharing my opinion. There’s no need to be so defensive, pal.

  • Gunboat_Diplo

    “or something”

  • hmmm

    just stupid move from Sony,even it’s for a market were people are stupid enough to buy iphone! same shit used by everyone

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  • Timel

    Really? it’s not just too late but Z5 U.S. version also has no fingerprint sensor…Seriously? While Samsung, LG and Huawei are preparing to launch their new flagship phones in the U.S. next month?

    What the heck Sony is thinking right now?
    There has no chance that the smartphone like Z5 will be able to compete with newer and (definitely) cooler rivals like Galaxy S7, LG G5

    Still don’t understand why Samsung and LG can start selling their flagship smartphones in the U.S. officially one week after launched, even Huawei, Huawei is going to catch up Samsung and LG in U.S. market right now while Sony can’t do like that….

    Gosh! Sony is the most inefficient electronic in the world.

  • smartuser8

    Z6 S820 is here soon.

  • Rikimaru Azuma

    Why ? …. I do not understand sony marketing in US who manage it ? ><

  • Chuck

    Yes, it could be some fingerprint sensor patent law, but I’m not sure. Other scenarios could be that Sony is trying to cut costs so they can price the phones more competitively, or maybe they want to make a big return to the US market with the Z6 (with a fingerprint scanner), so they want to make it look like the Z6 is as big an update to the Z5 (without a fingerprint scanner) as possible.

  • El Capitan Morgan

    Whoever the VP of marketing and sales in North America, they should have fired his/her ass long time ago. Sony should figured out long time ago that they are pretty inconsistent in selling their product.

  • Jesús López Sotelo

    Hopefully would be the second, for the best of Sony Mobile.

  • Jecht_Sin

    In US? Somehow it makes sense. Some people would steal your phone AND cut your finger to unlock it!

  • Timel

    S6 edge+ and Note 5 already killed this shitty U.S. version Z5 actually

    https://youtu.be/go4rADj1Jmc

  • RockStar2005

    They did? If you have that article, please post it here. Why even wait for the Z6 to pay attention?

  • M110

    at least we now probably know the reason for delay …

  • Cakefish

    As a Z5 Compact owner I wish Sony would slow down on it’s 6 month cycle but it probably won’t.

  • Raj Singh

    Why the fuck would anyone buy this phone in the US? It’s like Sony is deliberately sabotaging itself as it says it’s trying to get a foothold in the United States.

    Canada has the fingerprint sensor. There is zero rationale in this “business decision” given that you have to buy the phone outright.

    Anyone buying a Sony phone will likely be a fan and not a casual customer. This is an insult to Sony fans in the US. No wonder no one buys their phones there.

    So fucking stupid.

  • jmaxim917

    This truly makes no sense. They should at least put back the iconic power button since there will be no finger print scanner.

  • Timel

    Yeah! But Why I see a lot Sony fans are crying right now

    If I’m not mistaken I remember in pre Z5 era, when Sony still didn’t put fingerprint scanner feature in its flagship phones, I do remember that Most of Sony fans used to say that “Fingerprint scanner is just a gimmick” and it sounds like they really don’t care about it at all LOL

    So you guys cry for what now?
    Oh c’mon let’s sing together

    #Sonythebest #sonyforever #make.believe

  • jokensy

    The americans would not have bought the phone anyway. So, why bother?

  • Microsoft did the same thing With the new Surface Pro 4 Keyboard, With the fingerprint version only available for the US market. I know that I’m comparing two different things but is something that brands just do…

  • h2oflyer

    I’m beginning to think maybe the information regarding no fingerprint scanner is wrong. If its correct Sony is incredibly stupid!

    It’s not that easy to remove that feature and save on build cost. Just disconnecting the feature does nothing but piss buyers off.

    Something is not right with this story.

  • Aiden Pearce

    I don’t stay in US but its absurd and stupidity to buy a phone which lacks an essential feature,and same feature is available in other regions. People can better go for Z3+ or Z3 at much cheaper price.

  • Timel

    Of course, in the U.S. market next few weeks, the S7 will crush Z5 badly, So it gets harder for Sony to sell its Z5

    But to be honest, don’t wait till S7, the S6 Edge+ already killed Z5 actually

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SDdwlGzlvus

  • Raj Singh

    Sony officials confirmed the story. Bizarre and vexing.

  • And charge the same price haha

  • gamer324

    Honestly I’d prefer if Sony Mobile realizes that a business decision needn’t always be a bad one. With moves like this, it makes you wonder if Sony Mobile is trying to get sold off by Sony Corporation. Smh

  • illstplaya .

    There’s no point in buying the US version when you can get the international version for $555 instead of $600.

  • Akand

    Maybe Sony is emotionally sad because US carriers don’t sell their products. As a revenge they ommitted the sensor for their market. But eventually, whatever the reason is, Sony is a pure STUPID nowadays.
    Trying to go away from Sony. They have no respect for us, their loyal customers.

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  • jamie evans

    disappointing…Sony mobile is on the wrong direction in the US. Are they discontinueing Xperia??

  • Emir Zarith

    I guess Sony mobile is meant to be failed in America bandwith…..only Playstation sale keep gaining success

  • haoasakura0

    Guess I’ll be waiting for the Z6

  • aks316

    Hi I don’t believe what i am reading.. First they didnt launch Sony Xperia Z5 in white in india and now there is no fingerprint sensor in the usa model.. I really dont know what is wrong with Sony.. and thn they wonder why there phones dont sell that much.. Extremely hard to believe..

  • aks316

    The way they are going they will have no business decision to make.. its better not to launch than to do things like this.. they should know this is the internet world and people will come to know and be more angry with sony for giving them incomplete products .. their tagline is be moved and i am sure people will move away from sony brand if they keep doing these insane and unbelievable things.. and before anybody things i dont like Sony.. trust me i have so many Sony products and i am going to soon order the Z5 also.

  • Dark Magician

    “business decision”

    And they are aiming how to destroy themselves? Sony Mobile management should be fired.

  • Tibor Hornyák

    SHAME!!!! shame on Sony Mobile. thay are cutting thamselfs under the tree ….

    ALL brand are in US. the MUST market for every Mobile comp., AND SONY CAN fail.

    SONY can do such things like that.

    I had all sony phones from j7, to z5c- BUT this is ridiculous…..

  • Timel

    Why American customers have to waste their money with this shitty Z5 U.S version

    While S6 Edge+ and Note 5 are much better….

  • Timel

    It’s not just too late, furthermore the U.S. version of Z5 also has no fingerprint sensor…Seriously? While Samsung, LG and Huawei are preparing to launch their new flagship phones in the U.S. next month?

    What the heck is Sony thinking right now?
    There has no chance that the smartphone like Z5 will be able to compete with newer and (definitely) cooler rivals like Galaxy S7, LG G5… And When S7 and G5 came to U.S. market, at that time no one will care about Z5 anymore, Sony Xperia will be forgotten again, must blaim the horrible marketing strategy of Sony US, Kaz or those stupid headers of Sony US must be fired!

  • Sammy

    Glad I got the international version on Amazon for $490 last month then. Great little phone, but not without its bugs… What possible reason could Sony have for removing (to me) the coolest new feature of the Z series? (the coolest overall being waterproof…)

  • Alex Gede

    Best technology. Childish marketing strategy. What a shame

  • roeshak

    Why anyone would be perplexed by anything Sony mobile does is in itself perplexing lol. It’s a business decision people lool! Sit back, buckle up and watch the cash register just ring ring ring!

  • Timel

    Sony is doing well in Britain? Oh c’mon even in the U.K. Sony still can’t beat Apple and Samsung anyway

  • Cakefish

    No definitely not beating Apple or Samsung, but they do seem to be in a solid 3rd place over here in UK. I was working in retail for the past few months as a Samsung promoter and was able to access sales numbers from all the major brands.

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  • Timel

    UK is such a small market, what about the whole European market? Sony really can’t beat big players like Apple and Samsung

    Sony suppose to focus on U.S. But nowadays Sony act like they don’t care U.S. market and that’s just a big mistake.

  • Cakefish

    Considering that the UK alone has a fifth of the population of the US, that is still a fairly large and important market globally. I cannot speak for other European countries as I have no first-hand knowledge of how the smartphone markets look across the channel. I’m not disagreeing with you though, I think that Sony do need to try harder in the US market, I’ve never claimed otherwise.

  • Timel

    This is not just too late, U.S. Version of Z5 is too stupid also, it packed with horrible camera auto mode, terrible outdated chipset, no fingerprint scanner, these specs sounds too old with the expensive price

    And next month the newest advanced smartphones like S7, LG G5 are going out, no one will care about Z5, I swear, Sony made the wrong decision from the start…

    Hope Xperia Z6 will be able to sell in U.S. immediately after launch…

  • Battal

    They should replace the camera instead of that fingerprint sensor .

  • Plutocracy

    I just put my PS4 & Sony Hi-Res headphones on Craigslist. They just killed me off; they killed the only cool upgrade vs. the z3, z3+ feature set. I’d buy international, but I’ve read on various forums that the execution of a warranty claim is atrocious. Unbecredible (unbelievable + incredible).

  • Timel

    What about other brands? Like Samsung? Why Samsung never cut any highlight features out of their flagship phones?

  • Plutocracy

    Not entirely true. Many have PS4s and Hi-Res headphones and I have two friends that were eyeing this phone. Sony lost all three of us with this move. I certainly wouldn’t pay the 500 – 600 dollars with Sony removing the coolest upgrade on the phone.

  • Timel

    S6 edge plus and Note 5 already kill Z5 in the U.S. actually

    There’s has only one way, Sony must enter to America with Z6, And Z6 must cool enough to complete with S7

  • Plutocracy

    Three months I’ve waited for this release and all for nothing. I’m parting ways with Sony’s ecosystem. Without the full feature set, I no longer consider Sony U.S. a premium handset. It grates on me to the extent that it will also impact my purchase of other Sony electronics. They don’t understand that customer loyalty is fragile in this insanely competitive global economy.

  • Timel

    But Sony’s software engineers team is very lame

    Camera software is very bad,

    Hope Sony will Learn from Samsung, Samsung really did the very great job with everything about camera software, the best camera auto mode, the very great and powerful manual mode, Samsung can do it!

  • Timel

    Kaz is such a inefficient CEO

  • Plutocracy

    I hope the head CEO of Sony reads these forum
    posts. The repercussions of poor decisions will further impact sales of all their electronics.

  • Plutocracy

    This decision will catch up with them as I will think twice with any purchase of Sony products going forward.

  • Plutocracy

    Warranty is abysmal in the states. Waiting a month for a warranty claim, on average, is not something any buyer should accept.

  • Timel

    Yeah if you don’t care about Warranty but reality Warranty is very important for most people

  • Plutocracy

    You could be right… Sony sells camera sensors to Apple though, so Apple would not be wise to challenge since Sony’s sensors are among the best. What is amazing is how Apple can take a Sony sensor and make it perform better than Sony in Auto mode.

  • That is just stupid. Might as well forget about releasing it altogether and save money for the next flagship to be released worldwide.

  • Timel

    I’m waiting for the comeback smartphone of the King Nokia this year

  • Timel
  • RockStar2005

    I wish they would, but I doubt they do. lol

  • Bernhard F.

    Here in Germany, Sony’s phones are aviable on the major carriers and the Z5 has been in store for a couple months.

  • Timel

    I don’t think Z5 has the best technology

    – the most Horrible camera (when compare to iPhone 6s, S6 Edge+ and Note 5 camera)
    – Horrible chipset (Apple A9 and Exynos 7422 are much more powerful than Z5’s SD810 )
    – Bad color accuracy

  • Plutocracy

    The next flagship will have to be superior in build, design and performance to bring me back. There’s just too many alternatives now, and Sony’s coolest and newest feature was just removed, so it’s not looking good for them in the U.S.

  • Timel

    S6 edge+ camera is very cool
    Gosh I hopefully one day Sony will be able to make the great camera software like Samsung has done with Galaxy S6 edge+

  • Plutocracy

    Now I know how it feels when those in EMEA have to wait for products that get released in the U.S first. It sucks. But, what really sucks is when the product is not complete when it does finally get released.

  • Plutocracy

    Strategically speaking, while Sony is trying to save their compact high-end camera market, others are attempting to squeeze them into a smart phone. Or, Sony, on the other hand, may feel content with supplying sensors to the other mfgs. and raking in boat loads of profit as a supplier.

    Either way, Sony, again, is holding back, and for such an innovative company, their calculations are having an impact on consumer perception regarding their competitiveness. Their camera is still good but they need to improve their auto mode and image stabilization above 1080P.

  • Plutocracy

    Anyone waiting for this phone could accept no USB-C, no chi charging, no all- metal construction, no DAC, no OIS, lower-than-average audio levels, and an oddly placed volume rocker, but when you remove the finger print scanner, you turned the flagship into a caboose. They just ate 60 -70% of their U.S. profitability since finger printer scanners are a hot feature right now.

  • Robert Merlo

    it is the worst thing in the fucking entire human existence!!!! I purchased a international for use here in the us on tmobile and the phone crapped out 2months later. NGP- the company I bought from on amazon sales it with no warranty, sony sayd they have a 24month warranty but usa wont service it because its not from this region, sony uk says they cant also because it came from hong kong and sony hong kong says nope, so I have a fucking brick on my hands. it fucking wont turn on at all!!!! then sony uk said, send it to us but u have to pay shipping, which is 130 one way and then pay the shipping back to me when its fixed. this is fucking a insane type of customer service I have gotten from everyone involved!!!!

  • Plutocracy

    Thanks for confirming other nightmares I’ve read about, and I’m sorry to hear about your lose of hard earned cash. If this is your primary mode of communication, the brick gets heavier than a sack of shit.

    Supposedly, they don’t stock any replacement parts in the region nor do they have techs certified on the product in the U.S., however, they sell the phone in Canada… Regardless of their ‘global’ announcement over three months ago, it should have been a regional announcement, and if you had a lawyer on-the-cheap, it might be an interesting case.

  • Timel

    It sounds like Sony still stuck with same old tradition and it is going to drag them down slowly

    And the Z5 camera is just so-so, its superior auto is clearly the most horrible auto mode, the worst in low light, very noisy, bad color processing and its inefficient manual mode is very lame too, unlike the manual mode on S6 edge+ or LG G5 which is very powerful and professional.

    Z5 camera is very disappointed..

  • Timel

    Z5 camera is really disappointing, only SteadyShot that works very awesome!

    Note 5 vs Z5 PREMIUM camera test
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24tEptdSKas

  • Timel

    LG G4 vs Z5 PREMIUM camera test
    Sony continues to disappoint people

    https://youtu.be/6p64TBF4uUU?t=1m42s

  • Timel

    No one will buy Sony phones, if camera issue remains the weakest point

    If you’re not a Sony fan, if you are a normal people, you’ll definitely waste your money with Sony phones? Why most normal people have to waste the money with Sony phones while there’re better choices like S6 edge+ and Note 5, it’s not just a lame marketing but lame products also that make Sony can’t compete, can’t win the rivals today there’s only small group of people like Sony fans that still buy Sony phones, Most people say goodbye for Sony Mobile/ Xperia smartphones since Z1 era

  • Nibbler

    The main problem with Korean phones is design.they look cheap, even if they use metal and glass, they somehow manage to make the phone look like plastic.Also their tvs and cars look cheap.I guess, they just like shiny things.You know, if you could choose between two girls one is ugly and one beautiful, but the ugly girl cooks slightly better, which one would you prefer ;)

  • azzido

    Regret the us clients.
    Shame for Sony

    I do not see the reason they offer Z5 ib late January when next month Z6 will be shown.
    Seems again Z6 not for US clients.
    This way they will never sell in america.

  • azzido

    I hope they will not release Z5 in USA and instead, the Z6 will be released there at the same time as in Europe – with all the features and noise cancellibg headphones in the box.

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  • Annettacbader1


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  • Timel

    I think in pre-S6 era, Samsung flagship phones were very ugly but now the S6 edge+ and Note 5 are not ugly at all, it look pretty nice.

    The most important thing is its hardware and software is very cool, unique, very advance and powerful.

  • DIsChaos

    Samsung fan boy, we don’t need there ads here.

  • Timel

    Oh I’m not a Samsung fan boy

    I’m Just saying the truth

  • Mallahet

    Guess I’ll pass on an Xperia yet again.. Dumb. Thought this year would be the year.

  • Jorgie Llanos

    Sony wtf?! No wonder your cell phone business sucks in the US! Sony makes the best phones but for the love of God cannot market them in the US right! Why would you remove the one key feature of this phone just for one market??? Frustration!

  • Jorgie Llanos

    Either way, Sony won’t bring the Z6 to the US. If anything it’ll be here 6-12 months later when is no longer relevant.

  • Danny

    simple solution, Buy the international Z5 with Fingerprint scanner. With many models on the market, there should be one that compatible, 4G LTE bandwidths. DO NOT BUY SONY USA, BUT BUY SONY!
    me? I’ll just wait for the Z6 ULTRA!

  • Tommy He

    Surprise to see so many comments from US…
    Also surprise to see so many cannot see this result isn’t what Sony Mobile wants either.

    Removing fingerprint does harm than good to Sony itself. The only reason is probably some complicated licensing issue in US region.

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  • Gary

    Any idea if the US will honor warranty on international versions after the US release?

  • Trevor

    This would be a nice bonus for those of us that bought the unlocked version already.

  • Gary

    I’m considering buying the unlocked version now, so that I can have the fingerprint sensor.

  • Vinícius Azzolin

    I saw it on a Google+ post, but now I couldn’t find it. Sorry. Wecan just hope to that be true.

  • RockStar2005

    No big deal. Thanks for looking and sharing too.

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