The Xperia 5 III is here. Sony’s third-gen premium mid-ranger has launched alongside the flagship Xperia 1 III at an event in Japan, but it shares many key specs with its more expensive sibling. The device has been pitched as a compact version of that phone, offering a portable, pocketable version without sacrificing on power.
However, while the phone officially launched on 14 April, we still don’t have specific release date information for any of the new Xperia phones. Here’s everything you need to know about the Xperia 5 III.
Sony Xperia 5 III release date
The Xperia 5 III was officially unveiled at Sony’s official event on 14 April 2021, alongside the high-end Xperia 1 III and more affordable Xperia 10 III. Here’s how to watch back the event if you missed it.
All three devices are set to be available from ‘early Summer 2021‘, but a more specific release date isn’t yet known.
It’s a surprise to see the Xperia 5 III so early in the year, given Sony’s tendency to launch the phone after the Xperia 1 line has already made it to market. For context, the Xperia 5 II was released in October 2020.
Sony Xperia 5 III pricing
Interestingly, Sony chose not to reveal pricing for the Xperia 5 III at the official launch event. Therefore, our best guess still comes from how much you could expect to pay for the previous two generations at launch. The original Xperia 5 started at £699, before the second-gen model increased that to £799. We’d be surprised to see Sony drop the price of the Xperia 5 III, although there may be another hike considering the move a 120Hz display.
We’ll update this section once official pricing is revealed.
Sony Xperia 5 III specs and features
Sony’s Xperia 5 III is pitched as a compact version of the flagship Xperia 1 III, so it has quite a few features in common. Arguably the most significant is the move to Qualcomm’s top-of-the-line Snapdragon 888 chipset, which brings 5G support with it. The Xperia 5 II already had 5G, but it’s great to see the flagship make its way to the more affordable model.
The other key upgrade comes with the display, which now comes with a 120Hz refresh rate. It’s only Full HD rather than 4K on the Xperia 1 II, but it seems like a wise trade-off on this smaller 6.1in OLED display. Sony has stuck with the tall, narrow 21:9 aspect ratio from last year’s phone, as well as 240Hz touch sampling for a fast response time.
There’s also plenty in common with regards to the cameras – both have triple rear setups, consisting of a 12Mp main snapper supported by 8Mp ultrawide and 8Mp periscopic lens. Sony has ditched the telephoto camera seen on previous models, and the only thing you’re not getting on the Xperia 5 III is the 3D iTOF (time of flight) sensor. That means you’ll have to be content with continuous autofocus rather than real-time, but it remains to be seen how much of an effect it’ll have.
Both phones also can’t be separated when it comes to battery capacity, with a 4500mAh cell larger than we’ve seen on recent Xperia phones. Sony also advertises the long lifespan of the battery, which it says is capable of maintaining great performance for up to three years. There’s still no wireless charging, but the 30W adapter in the box comes with claims of 50% capacity in 30 minutes.
Alongside the USB-C port you’ll need for that, there’s also a 3.5mm headphone jack. Sony is one of the last remaining manufacturers to offer this on a high-end handset, so it’s worth drawing attention to.
In terms of colour options, the green featured in official imagery will be joined in Europe by black and pink models.
We’ll update this article as soon as we know more about the Xperia 5 III. In the meantime, check out our guides to the best Sony phones and best phones overall to see what it’ll be up against.