- Sony has launched the Xperia Pro smartphone in the US.
- It offers HDMI-input support so you can use it as a camera monitor.
- The phone has a price tag of $2,500.
Sony announced the Xperia 1 II back in February 2020, while also revealing plans to offer an Xperia Pro smartphone. Unfortunately, we didn’t hear much about the latter device since then.
Now, Sony has finally launched the Xperia Pro in the US (no European release unfortunately), and it raises our eyebrows for several reasons. For starters, the phone comes with an absolutely eye-watering $2,500 price tag. In other words, you can buy two Xperia 1 II units if you really wanted to. Or three Galaxy S21 devices.
So what do you get for the price then? Well, another odd decision is the move to offer last year’s Snapdragon 865 silicon instead of the latest Snapdragon 888 SoC. The older processor is still beefy, but you’d expect a brand-new high-end chipset for $2,500. And the new processor also delivers photo or video capture from three simultaneous cameras, faster burst capture, and better 4K HDR recording.
We do see two major spec upgrades as the new phone jumps from 8GB of RAM and 256GB of expandable storage seen in last year’s flagship to 12GB of RAM and 512GB of expandable storage. But the rest of the spec sheet is basically identical, such as the 6.5-inch 4K HDR OLED panel, triple 12MP rear camera combo, 8MP selfie camera, and 4,000mAh battery. This new device doesn’t appear to offer wireless charging though, unlike last year’s model.
Integration with your DSLR camera
The main Xperia Pro selling point is the HDMI input support via type-D connection. This allows you to use the phone as a monitor for your camera, giving you a bigger, more accurate viewfinder for images or videos. Sony says the phone can also live-stream video content coming from the connected camera or camcorder, enabling a more professional setup for web broadcasts.
The camera connectivity also extends to image sharing, as a wired USB connection between your Alpha 7S III camera and the Xperia Pro allows for speed picture transfers.
Fortunately, Sony is also touting 5G connectivity this time out, with both sub-6GHz and mmWave standards supported. The company says that it’s “fine-tuned” the latter for Verizon’s network.
Other notable features here include a 3.5mm port (!), a dedicated shortcut button, IP68 water/dust resistance, stereo speakers, and Android 10. The latter is pretty disappointing given that Android 11 has been out for over five months already.
Does the HDMI input support therefore warrant a $2,500 price tag? Well, there are workarounds such as a cheap dongle and USB OTG cable. Furthermore, there are camera monitors out there for well under $600, although 4K monitors seem very rare. It’s also worth noting that Sony isn’t actually including the required HDMI micro connector cable in the package either, which seems like a glaring oversight for the price.
Either way, I think even Sony’s target market of content creators might agree that $2,500 is a lot of money to pay for any phone. And it’s doubly expensive in light of the device touting last year’s flagship processor and an older version of Android. What do you think though? Does the combo of HDMI input and the 4K screen make the Xperia Pro worth buying? Let us know via the poll above!
Nevertheless, consumers in the US can grab the Sony Xperia Pro via the likes of Sony’s website or B&H Photo Video. You can hit the button below to check out a listing.