The reason why Xperia X has thicker bezels than the Xperia XA

by XB on 16th May 2016

in Xperia X series


Xperia XA versus Xperia X bezels_2Many have commented that the upcoming Xperia XA looks like the true premium device, over the Xperia X and X Performance. This is mainly down to the design, which has almost bezel free sides. Both the Xperia X and X Performance have thicker bezels and a number of readers have wondered why this would be the case, given that these are the more expensive devices.

Well according to Sony’s Chief Art Director Daisuke Ishii the reason for the difference in side bezels is due to the need to fit the fingerprint sensor power button in the Xperia X and X Performance. This sensor requires a certain amount of thickness, which limits how thin the bezels can be. The Xperia XA has no such restriction and therefore Sony was able to provide a near bezel-free display. Would you sacrifice the fingerprint sensor for thinner bezels? Or does it not bother you much? We’d love to hear your thoughts below.

Xperia XA vs. Xperia X side bezels

Xperia XA versus Xperia X bezels

Via ePrice.

  • Mike Gonzalez

    just place the fingerprint under the display or at least on the front bezel… i simply hate thick bezels and wasted surface

  • Wolf0491

    I don’t mind the sides. I haven’t owned a device with fingerprint yet to really know if i find it necessary in life. I’m sure once i have one i wouldn’t wanna go back. I do think Xa looks nice though.

    On a side note the picture you guys chose to compare. Is it just me or does the one of X look super blurry just to make it look worse?

  • DarkMaster

    It would require terrible physical home button , and that would be beyond frustrating so no thanks !

  • DarkMaster

    I have no need for useless fingerprint sensor but not for thinner side
    bezel either .. so I choose fingerprint sensor as another piece of
    hardware that is good to have…

  • Mike Gonzalez

    no need for physical home button, Huawei only puts a tactile surface with no click, just place your finger on it and that’s it

  • DarkMaster

    yeah but that is on the back not front …and I think that spoils the look more than a bit thicker bezel .. but that is just my subjective opinion though.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    I don’t understand the desire for bezel-less phones. I don’t want big bezels, but I’m not obsessed with getting rid of them either.
    I’m a fan of functionality so I’ll vote fingerprint sensor all the way.
    Similarly, I’d rather have a slightly thicker/bigger/fatter phone with a bigger battery than something wafer thin device that dies of me.

    Bear in mind, however, that I’m currently using (and loving) the Z3TC as my primary device, so I’m not a a typical user.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    I’m not trolling here, simp!y curious. Why not get a Samsung S7? Or better yet, S7 edge? That’s about as bezel less as a phone can be and has the fingerprint sensor on the front.
    It wouldn’t make sense from a practical or design standpoint to add a sensor to the front of an omni balance phone. Clearly, the power button is really the only choice without a serious re-working of Sony’s design language, at least until screen-embedded fingerprint sensors become a practical reality.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Agreed. Omni-balance design being what it is, the sensor has to go on the side of Sony devices.

  • Omarion07

    Fingerprint scanner is an essential feature these days and so is beautiful esthetics and smaller bezels.. If the current position of the fingerprint scanner will continue to prevent Sony from slimming down the bezels then they might need to move it to the back of the device or add a physical home button at the front! I’d say the former is more plausible than the latter!

  • jamie evans

    The placement of the fingerprintscanner can be at the bottom of the body, like iPhone, doesn’t have to be on the side bezel. Anyways, I DO think Sony should make a premium device which looks exactly like XA. It’s gonna sell.

  • sfkaudi

    I don’t mind bigger bezels on the side as on z5 line and x, Xp, even my Z2 as my hand/fingers will be too big for no bezels units and for me it’s no go (my hand can fully cover my Z2).
    No bezels! Maybe look more stylish but not more premium, not in my eyes

  • ramuk

    Personally I don’t care about fingerprint scanner. I like the looks of XA. I wish it was the design of X performance. While fingerprint scanner in the power button is very convenient I’m willing to sacrifice this convenience for better aesthetic. Sony, If you want to put the fingerprint scanner put it under the screen or on the back of the phone. I want smaller bazel and better aesthetic.

  • jamie evans

    Yeah XA looks fantastic

  • azzido

    I want finger print sensor, since Z5 do not imagine it can be gone.

  • HAWX

    Nice topic. THX Xperiablog
    Less bezels= Better look, better ergonomics and phone feels smaller than it would in your hand.

    I would definitely go for the less bezzel option because it provides better user experience while using the phone all the time where as fingerprint sensor provides a better way to unlock your device just at the beginning of the usage session.

  • rmartinezdl

    I don’t like bezel less phones, my grandma bought the S7 Edge and it’s a pain to use, you always end up touching the display, even on my Z3 Compact I had to get a case because bezels where too thin for comfortable grip.

  • Yes, Yes, do not pay attention to the small bezel. In my opinion looks weird. I use one hand.
    If I used a big Xperia, I would have thought.

  • MackinsVII

    Erm… No it doesn’t. Smaller bezels look better, but it’s definitely not a better user experience. You keep on pressing things you aren’t meant to because it can sense whatever you use (I use my little fingers) to support the phone in landscape mode.

  • HAWX

    Erm… Yes it does

    I don’t have a problem with thin bezzels as you and some people say. I think it’s about getting used to.
    Many reviews I listened to said Z3+ had better ergonomics and feel thanks to it’s smaller side bezels compared to Z5
    However the problem is there with curved screens on sides, like Edge devices. But it has the software which understands that and ignores unwanted touches on the sides.

  • theskig

    Used once on Z5 and then deleted everything.
    I don’t want to use it for unlocking the phone, why you’re forcing me to do that?
    I would like to use it for web logins or paypal transaction, not only for display unlock.

  • Timel

    Even I don’t care much about fingerprint scanner and I prefer small bezels anyway but I think this sounds make sense, fingerprint scanner placed on the side of the phone is the best position for fingerprint scanner

    Whatever it would be awesome if Sony will make the bezels smaller than this without losing the fingerprint scanner, most people don’t want bezels-less or the bullshit curve edge, they want thin bezels but X performance’s bezels look too huge and it suppose to be smaller than this !

    or Maybe Sony should move fingerprint scanner from the side to

  • Emilio Rodulfo

    In a perfect world we’d have both but I think Sony’s fingerprint scanner placement to be genius and very innovative and I love it. So a lil bezel is acceptable for the BOMB ASS FINGERPRINT SCANNER!!!

  • Emilio Rodulfo

    By doing that we’ll be forfeiting the stereo speakers

  • P9

    u’ve just recommended other band in xperia fan blog though.. will it make sense ?
    We not just only talk about decision for buying which brand here.
    and not died fanboy who kno nth abouy others too, but we’re to discuss about Xperia.

    sorry for my bad english

  • Aiden Pearce

    size bezels is OK, but what they explain for flat top and bottom bezels?
    if they had dedicated audio DAC its finee but they never did. So much for Sony sound.

  • Omarion07

    wow your grandma must be really tech-savvy!

  • Timel

    I agree ramuk

    Smaetphones with bezel-less or small bezels look really futuristic and cool

    Maybe Sony should go ahead all competitors by making the smartphone display with integrated fingerprint scanner , Sony tried to make it four years ago which is so cool

    http://www.redorbit.com/news/technology/1112501121/sony-patents-technology-to-put-camera-and-sensors-behind-smartphone-display/#WT5brUx4rSuAtHeg.99

  • Ming William Lee

    To be honest, the fingerprint sensor on Z5 isn’t any good, so I don’t care about it

  • Timel

    Then put the goddamn fingerprint scanner under the smartphone display

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    We’ll have to agree to disagree on what constitutes a “huge” bezel, as I am absolutely fine with a few millimeters of bezel.

    Yes, Sony has patented some technology for putting a fingerprint sensor in the screen but AFAIK it’s still in development. These types of new technologies often take 3-5 years from prototype stage (when it can be patented) to production stage.

  • Johan

    I love having the fingerprint sensor and power button combined!

    I would not mind if the fingerprint sensor was placed on the back instead, as long as it also is the power button and it meant that we would get the design without side bezels.

    But if having it on the side is a must, then how about moving it up to the top right corner, so that it only has the top bezel beside it instead of the screen?

    That is were a fully extended thumb would rest naturally while grabbing the phone with the right hand anyway.

    That would also solve the problem of the currently centred sensor/button being the weak spot and point of breakage when an Xperia is being put under pressure.
    It would give the Xperia phones better overall structural integrity.

  • Timel
  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    The entire second half of my comment was about Sony.
    Sony’s current “omni-balance” design has ALL buttons on the right side of the device, therefore that’s the only place to put the fingerprint sensor.
    If you like Sony design, then that’s not really negotiable. Putting a fingerprint sensor anywhere else would be CONTRARY to the design philosophy

    Samsung puts stuff all over the place in their devices (I hate that).
    Mike Gonzalez wants the sensor on the front of the phone, which does not fit with Sony’s current design, BUT DOES fit with Samsung’s design.

    If someone wants a waterproof Flagship phone with a fingerprint sensor in the bottom bezel, the S7 already has that, so why not buy that?

  • Timel

    Samsung really did the great job this time, S7 edge is very cool

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Totally a valid point
    I think the reason Sony didn’t do that has to do with a couple ideals behind design philosophy.
    First, no unnecessary controls. Sony wants the design as clean as possible and tries to minimize the visual clutter.
    Second, simplicity in use. Generally you unlock the phone after turning it on/waking it up. Since you press the power button to turn it on (and yes, I know it’s not the only way) it makes sense to use the same button to unlock the phone instead of having to move your thumb to a different location.

    As for moving the power button as well? That’s possible, I’m sure, but the big centered power button is one of the signature design elements that identify an Xperia.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Okay 2 things.
    1) Multilple people have called for the sensor to be under/embedded in the screen.
    Yes, I know there are a bunch of patents and companies showing off the technology. That does not mean it’s ready for production. If not were, every Flagship this year would already have it.
    I suspect we will see it for Q3 announced devices this year, but as the X series is launching imminently, it missed the boat, same as it’s competitors.

    2)Several more people have called for it to be in the lower bezel.
    Sure, but then we’d basically have a Samsung S7.
    Seriously think of how much flak there’d be about Sony copying Samsung and Apple.
    Not to mention it would make NO SENSE with the current Sony design language.

    Please stop posting these two suggestions over and over again

  • raju

    What about z3 bezel??

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Yes, this technology has been kicking around for a couple years now. We may even see it on shelves by Christmas, but it’s wasn’t available in time for the current crop of phones

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Speakers, cameras, USB, sensors, vibrator… all those bits that make the phone work.

  • Blazing Mak

    He thought the speaker was located at the back.

  • Aiden Pearce

    true, but you can see what they did with Xperia ZL.
    if only they could do that magic again.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    What?
    A) How do you know what he was thinking?
    B) Front or back, speakers always have to be in the bezels unless the device is thick
    C) The main thing is actually the rear camera.

  • DarkMaster

    http://www.gsmarena.com/sony_xperia_xa_ultra_is_official_with_a_16mp_ois_selfie_camera-news-18249.php 16MP front camera with OIS LOL SONY puts it first in front camera :D

  • Vinny Conforto

    Sony MUST take advantage of XA’s beautiful unique eye-catching design for a flagship phone.

  • DarkMaster

    it’s not LG solution/innovation ! it’s known thing … old news …

  • FYLegend21

    I’m not sure but some early reports claimed the X has a dedicated DAC. I’m not keeping my hopes up though…

  • Chee Siong Lee

    All these bezel-less ideas are total craps.

  • Thariq Mohammed

    XA ultra

  • charuka

    Fingerprint sensor can be mounted at the rear of the phone like huawei.So why sony wont to place it at the side of the phone which makes it even more thicker?

  • DarkMaster

    spoils the look and Omni-balance . simple as that I would rather live without fingerprint sensor then having it on the back of the phone .

  • DarkMaster

    thanks :) i corrected/edited my mistake .

  • FYLegend21

    They could make the bottom bezel shorter but they choose not to to maintain their “OmniBalance” design. The speakers do take space but in just about every phone, stereo speakers or not. HTC just made it seem like the bezels were large because of their speaker components but the Z3 Compact, Moto X Pure and others can have smaller bezels.

    Rear camera can be located beneath the screen area like on HTC or Samsung – and their phones are still pretty thin, but Sony chooses not to do that and leaves it in the bezel region.

  • DarkMaster

    off topic but here is your so much desired OIS from SONY http://www.gsmarena.com/sony_xperia_xa_ultra_hands_on-review-1440.php

  • DarkMaster

    it’s not , only it’s ”edge” is cool but useless , but still cool I agree .

  • ????? ??????

    ??????! ??????? ??????, ??????? ???? ?????? ?????????? ??????? ??? ???????,? ????, ??? ??? ? LG – ?? ?????? ???????!

  • Harsa Rizano
  • No matter what the reason, XA has one of the best design in all recent Xperia phones including the Z line. Sony charges a hefty premium for their phones, they should give features/functionality with good pleasing design to look/handle rather than giving excuses.

  • ymytbb .

    XA Ultra official!? What’s next?…XA Performance lol !!! XA design+5.2″QHD+4GB of RAM+SD820+a lighter body+USB Type-C+fingerprint scanner in the bottom.

  • DarkMaster

    keep your wishes for yourself and besides it can’t be a Performance model and have QHD screen at the same time .

  • DarkMaster

    From my experience It is an excellent one but still a useless feature.

  • Ming William Lee

    Its reliability and accuracy have to be improved

  • hansip

    when Z5 finger print screen works as intended, the side placement is convenient. But the Z5 scanner is too sensitive with oil and water plus the narrow scanner size limits the error margin before it rejects the scan result. So.. even though i love the scanner on my z5, it needs cleaning wipe frst most of the time to make it work properly, Hopefully, the on screen scanner can be delivered as soon as possible.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Of course, there are always ways to design a phone differently, but since OmniBalance is Sony’s current philosophy the top and bottom bezels make sense.

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    I’ve always been a big fan of the idea of a “super-premium” Sony device with no compromises (I’ve been wishing since my Clie PalmOS device) but to be frank: the market is SO tiny for a $1000 phone, Sony really can’t afford to do it.

    99.9% of smartphone buyers don’t know/care about DACs.
    Sony is (and needs to continue) trying to appeal to the broadest possible consumer base.

  • iosvsios

    Does not bother me at all. I like to be able to hold the phone without accidentally touching the screen haha.

  • Gitarooman

    the X line up is a huge step backward from the Z series.

  • Afzal Zainal Rddz

    Plus if you look closely the back camera placement already at the perfect location for top bezel ( xperia z5 ). If sony reducing the top bezel there will be no place to put their sensor unless sony reducing the sensor size or make it protuding or adding more thickness( due to overlay parts placement ) to the body which is end up another complaint from user. And if sony only reduce the bottom side bezel it will a weird design.

  • Tochi Nwodu

    Bezel talk is getting irritating.
    I had the opportunity of using the Samsung edge and it was a horrible experience cuz stretching your finger on the screen brings alot of input..worse trying to access d buttons on the edge itself.
    Using xperia z5 same thing also happens sometimes imagine it was bezeless
    As for fingerprint Sony please maintain ur unique position.
    Majority of you want it on the bottom then, what happens to my stereo speakers? Look how lame the HTC 10 looks now.
    I dont want to experience the bent bezel like I did on my xperia z1
    If you enjoy bezel free phone head over to Samsung

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  • marcyff2

    Also fingerprint scanner is used to authorized google wallet payments

  • Heinz Eberhardt

    The frame is but secondary. Mir is the scanner prefer.

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  • ryq24

    They should have copied Huawei’s design and place the finger print sensor at the back.

  • Emil Oskarsson

    I like having some small bezels on the side, much easier to touch on the display by mistake with too thin bezels :p

  • Mac

    Don’t care about no fingerprint sensor, nor bezelless design. Just a great Sony smartphone, with all Sony top of the line components and bugfree fw
    In a compact format like Z5c or Z3c maybe slightly bigger. Thickness is irrelevant since batterylife is the way of thinking.

  • Emil Oskarsson

    Didn’t Sony have a patent for fingerprint sensor embedded in the display??!!

  • Mac

    Exakt så (y)

  • Emil Oskarsson

    Yeah but the zl had the front facing camera on the bottom of the phone, was not waterproof and didn’t had any front facing speakers.

  • Matt

    can it makes toast?

  • FYLegend21

    Samsung and Apple are in that 1000$ market, but they rely on carriers to sell them at a subsidized price.

  • FYLegend21

    Well, the Galaxy S6 has a camera at the back where the screen is, yet it is thinner than the Z5.

    I agree with your points about the bottom bezel being odd-looking, but a lot of people were annoyed by HTC putting the “black bar” on the M8 and M9, and assume the stereo speakers take up too much space. I don’t mind but some users would prefer a phone that is not too tall if it has a 5/5.2 inch screen. The Z3 Compact had a good screen-body ratio but it has decreased in the Z5C and the X.

    Now HTC and Motorola are ditching stereo speakers in their flagships… I doubt Sony would (the just-announced XA Ultra doesn’t, but then it is meant to be a larger version of the XA which doesn’t have them either)

  • Nafnaf84

    That’s what I thought… maybe this fingerprint sensor could be put elsewhere in the future…

    Speaking of bezels, why there is so much bezels at the top and the bottom?

  • Spencer Navarra-Chew

    Yes, you’ve made my point for me.
    The super-premium market is already saturated by the two biggest players in the business.
    If Sony were doing well in other market segments they might foray into the market but as is, it’d be a huge loss for them.

  • Malih

    Actually if they implement the palm-rejection technology they use on large tablet, that should be safely taken care of, I played around with an iPad Air in the office and it is quiet good with palm-rejection. (Of course if Apple holds the patent to that then my argument is nullified)

  • Malih

    I suspect a hypothetical XA performance would most likely have the Helio P20 or ten-core/deca-core Helio X20

  • Mark Anthony Que

    EASY FIx!!….PLACE THE FINGER PRINT SENSE SOME WHERE ELSE!!…DONE!…MIC DOWN!!

  • Cgold

    Well since I live in the US and won’t get the fingerprint reader either way, I’d much prefer the bezel-less design of the XA, though I really just want X series compact phone.

  • FrankDrebin

    Nah she’s just rich, lol love u grandma

  • Battel

    On Xperia Z’s it was because the IP68 certification, Now it’s because the fingerprint sensor, tomorrow because the camera shutter key and the front facing camera ( would u sacrifice the camera and the shutter for less bezels ) ?
    What a silly question is that cover the poor untalented no taste what whom call him self Chief Art Director and his department .

  • BronsonX

    A good reason for placing the fingerprint sensor someplace else..

  • ludimilojko

    I don’t want a fingerprint sensor, and i don’t want a bezelless phone. I just want a phone with small bezels. Impossible? It looks like.

  • kaostheory

    Google needs to add software for limiting the area of touch.

  • DarkMaster
  • tristi lumina

    I am also have understanding about “Bezel” like dude Spencer said.
    Simply, Phone with Bezel-less for what? For what? Is there any special function with bezel-less. If yes (and that special function get-in on my requirement for using smartphone), okay I need thin bezel too.

    If no, for what? Design-wise? It depends on people who will buy it.
    No one will stop you to suggest Sony to make phone with bezel-less, but not everyone will want your “bezel taste” dude. If you don’t like, then pick or commend the phone that staisfy you.
    You can’t force “your taste” to fit with anyone dude. Every person have their view and “taste”.

    Honestly, I don’t like bezel-less phone, moreover flip / elastic smartphone! IMO it was ugly!
    Cheer~

  • hmmm

    and I just don’t want a phone with 1mm thickness.fingerprint is just great

  • dko3tgk

    Yes! ZL top and bottom bezels. I have never wanted smaller side bezels. How many were demanding this from Sony? But giant top and bottom bezels need to go away. The ZL had a 5.0 inch screen in the same body size as the Z Compact. Now the X has a 5.0 inch screen in a large Z sized body. This is regression, not progress.
    Sony has always been well known even as far back as the Walkman and Discman days of making very compact sized electronics. Yet with mobile phones they make some of the least compact. Please Sony, do something about giant top and bottom bezels, i dont care about side bezels.

  • Omarion07

    Well I think it’s a step in the right direction.. All I want now is for Sony to add OIS to the rear camera and increase the ram on it’s upcoming flagship!

  • Aiden Pearce

    Even X, XA and XA Ultra are not waterproof and as far as camera goes they can surely accomodate it unless its large sensors like C-series or XA ultra.

  • Rashed Ghulam Subhani

    I’m waiting for the day when Sony will release a Ceramic unibody Xperia Arc (Reloaded) with 5″ display, 132mm x 66.8mm x 7.5mm with display Embedded fingerprint. IP-68.
    16 MP, 18 mm, 1/1.5″ Sensor, Aperture f/1.5,
    Dual Pixel Auto focus, OIS, 1.8µm pixel.
    Stereo speakers, 3200maH battery, Wireless Quick charge 3.0, USB-C. Web-OS like Gesture based interface.
    Now I can sleep in peace…

  • DarkMaster

    as long camera is flat I’m fine with OIS , and kudos to SONY for making front cam that features OIS without protruding bump. but if it start’s to protrude like a nose I will consider it gimmick and bash it at every corner again !

  • Afzal Zainal Rddz

    Yet s6 were slimmer but it still had protuding camera to fit 1/2.6 sensor but sony using bigger sensor at 1/2.3 which required proper placement to avoid protuding. If sony put that sensor size under the display layer it will be super duper weird protuding at the back. The z3 compact had good to body ratio compared z5 compact but i believe it based on design phylosophy and z5 series need extra space to located fingerprint parts. You will not happy if sony making one side bezal thinner and the other side thickker for the finger print parts just for the sake to had archieved good body to ratio.

  • It’s time for Sony to implement the fingerprint sensor in the front panel. Like the one we saw in the news from LG recently. Fingerprint sensor, tick. Side-bezel-less display, tick.

  • 3_nity

    Just lie reason from Sony.

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  • Dominik Engelmann

    It is not the design. It is the size of the phone. Small bezels can make a 5.5 inch phone look like a normal 5 incher. See elephone p9000. And when you look at the ulefone future… They do have a Fingerprint Scanner on the side. Exact as the X series but do not have any side bezels. And this is only a Chinese manufacturer. Why can’t Sony as a big company also produce these Kind of bezels with Fingerprint Scanner for their midrange Smartphones… But what’s really annoying for me are the bezels on top and on the bottom… It was okay 1-2 years ago. It seems like the first Z Smartphone the bezels getting thicker and thicker. Hasnt the ZR still the best Screen to Body ratio?

  • fried_egg

    Thin bezels only suit Asian countries where “boney” fingers are more common. European and American markets have fingers that cause the screen to go into “app remove” mode just by holding the phone… it is so annoying. The phone needs to be held and work without going into the wrong mode because your fingers touch the screen when holding it.

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  • Da Fuq

    What if they use Qualcomm’s Sense ID? Should probably require less space than a capacitive sensor.

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  • PVC

    Who cares about fingerprint sensor. Just because apple thinks it’s cool. It’s rather worthless security.

  • 5u5m1t

    Simple, have the super thin sides and put the fingerprint scanner on the back! And please move that volume rocker up, it’s so uncomfortable to use.

  • bnmalmo

    I definitely vote for the XA / XA-style design !
    Have the Z5 compact now for 6-7 months – and the fingerprint sensor doesn’t work more than every second time anyway – so for my sake – skip it – and focus on the best design instead..!!

  • tristi lumina

    Nice shot! It isn’t occurred to me. Then if the reason for size of phone, then I am agree with you too :D
    But with “still normal” small-bezel too :p
    ZL was the best

  • Innosaint Nwoke

    AAAMMEEENNN!

  • lastguru

    Keep in mind, that bezel provides structural support for the phone, so the device is less likely to break if it has some bezel. This is especially true for the screen, as Sony, unlike some other manufacturers, makes a gap between the glass and the bezel, so in case one drops the device, there is an air buffer.

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