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Sony unveils Xperia 1 IV with world’s first true optical zoom

May 11, 2022

Sony has unveiled its new Xperia 1 IV flagship smartphone, which boasts the world’s first true optical zoom lens in a smartphone camera. With a 1.5x zoom, equivalent to 85-125mm, it covers a nice range for taking pictures of peoples, and counts as a welcome advance on the switchable 70mm/105mm dual telephoto found on last year’s Xperia 1 III and Xperia 5 III. But it can’t match the outright reach of some competing devices, or the zoom ranges routinely found with standalone cameras and lenses.

In other respects, the Xperia 1 IV counts as an iterative update to its predecessor, with some welcome upgrades and new features. It employs the same 16mm equivalent ultra-wideangle camera and 24mm equivalent main camera as before, and is capable of 20fps high-speed shooting. It even boasts the same sophisticated autofocus system as Sony’s latest Alpha cameras, including subject recognition, eye detection and subject tracking. For video, 4K recording is available at up to 120fps.

Sony Xperia 1 IV colours

Sony’s Xperia 1 IV comes in a choice of three colours

According to Sony, the Xperia 1 IV’s key features include:

  • World’s first true optical zoom lens with 85-125mm focal length and 120fps high-speed readout image sensor for all three lenses to never miss the moment
  • Cinematic video expression with 4K 120fps, up to 5x slow-motion video recording
  • Real-time Eye autofocus (AF) and 20fps AF/AE burst shooting in HDR on all three lenses, providing pictures with the richest colour and contrast
  • “Videography Pro,” and “External monitor” features with live streaming
  • 4K 120Hz display delivers exceptionally smooth graphics performance and 240Hz high-speed touch detection for game players is in complete control of the action.
  • Game assist function “Game Enhancer” can be used to fine tune the image and audio quality and supports livestreaming for real time content sharing
  • 50% Brighter 4K 120Hz HDR display and Real-time HDR drive
  • Powerful 5,000 mAh and long-life battery for longer use, with Snapdragon® 8 Gen 1 Mobile Platform and Corning® Gorilla® Glass Victus®

The Sony Xperia 1 IV is due to be available to buy from 16th June 2022 for £1299. Detailed product information can be found here. Those who pre-order between May 11th and June 15th will be able to claim a pair of Sony WH-1000XM4 wireless noise cancelling headphones worth £279.

Sony Xperia 10 IV colours

Sony has also announced the more affordable Xperia 10 IV

Alongside the Xperia 1 IV, Sony has also announced the more mass-market Xperia 10 IV. With a conventional triple-camera system featuring ultra-wide (8MP), wide (12MP), and telephoto (8MP) cameras, and 5,000mAh battery, it’ll come in a choice of four colours for £429. But there’s no sign of any update to the mini-flagship Xperia 5 series.


Sony Xperia 1 IV Press release:

Sony’s New Xperia 1 IV is a Powerhouse in Content Creation with the World’s first True Optical Zoom Lens[i] and more

Bringing the most advanced video and photo capabilities to a smartphone with 4K 120 frames per second (fps) slow-motion video recording on all lenses[ii], combined with seamless game streaming and immersive music listening

Sony Xperia 1 IV

Sony Xperia 1 IV front and back views

May 11, 2022 – Sony today announced the new Xperia 1 IV smartphone, developed specifically for those looking for the very latest in smartphone technology including cutting-edge imaging technology, advanced gaming capabilities and powerful audio features, all wrapped in a compact and modern design.

“Xperia 1 IV is an exciting continuation of our Xperia series,” said Nobuki Asahina, Head of Mobile Sales & Marketing’. “At Sony, we believe creativity has no limits and our new flagship model, the Xperia 1 IV, is born of that philosophy.” He continued: “Xperia inspires users to become creators, and every facet of content creation can be handled by Xperia 1 IV. Beyond this, it is fast! Every aspect of the device has been designed to maximise the speed of execution. Whether it’s the speed of the camera, or the speed of responsiveness when gaming, we firmly believe that this new device will delight our customers.”

Image Sensor and Optical Zoom for the Next-Level Videography and Photography

Xperia 1 IV features three lenses; a 16mm ultra-wide lens, 24mm wide lens, and a new unique true optical telephoto zoom 85–125mm lens, to give creators the ability to capture a wide range of content.

All lenses have a 12MP “Exmor RS™ for mobile” image sensor with a readout speed of up to 120fps. This capability allows the device to record at 4K 120fps for up to 5x slow-motion video recording, Real-time Eye AF and Real-time tracking for still shooting with every lens[viii]. The Xperia 1 IV also combines depth information, using the 3D iToF sensor, and AI (artificial intelligence) based subject detection for precise and accurate AF and tracking in low light.

Additionally, ZEISS optics have been calibrated specifically for the Xperia™ smartphone. The ZEISS T* coating contributes to accurate rendering and contrast by reducing reflections for all rear camera lenes.

The front camera is also equipped with an “Exmor RS™ for mobile” image sensor with 12MP, which is a larger image sensor than the previous model. It enables noise reduction in dark places and selfie shooting in 4K HDR.

Create Incredible Video Content

Xperia 1 IV provides unparalleled video capabilities. Based on direct feedback from video creators, Sony developed its “Videography Pro” feature, which centralises settings for video. This allows users to easily adjust settings such as focus, exposure, and white balance – even while recording.

Users can capture and playback fast-moving scenes and slow-motion video at up to 5x due to the device’s ability to record in 4K HDR 120fps video on all its lenses. Capturing smooth, shake-free video is easier than ever thanks to the latest Optical SteadyShot™ with FlawlessEye™[ix]. The Xperia 1 IV also supports Eye AF technology and object tracking for video, allowing the user to keep sharp focus on the subject and spend more time composing their shot.

Sony’s newest smartphone also features multi-frame shooting for video recording[x], which allows videos to be recorded with wider dynamic range without losing resolution. In addition, the Xperia 1 IV allows for seamless zoom from its ultra-wide-angle to telephoto perspectives for even more creative freedom.

Livestream Anytime, Anywhere

The Xperia 1 IV improves the quality of live streaming, while simplifying the process. The device enables “Eye AF” and “Object Tracking” when using Videography Pro while livestreaming to YouTube™, for example. Alternatively, users can stream high-quality video from a compatible Alpha™ camera[xi] while using Xperia 1 IV as an external monitor[xii]. When paired with Sony’s Vlog Monitor, users can livestream content at an even higher resolution by using the rear cameras.

Photography with Technology from Alpha™ Cameras

The Xperia 1 IV combines a powerful optical telephoto zoom lens with beautiful bokeh and advanced autofocus technology to deliver stunning imagery. Xperia 1 IV enables Real-Time Eye AF and 20fps burst with AE (auto exposure)/AF in HDR on all three lenses to capture portraits for both people and animals, even when photographing fast-moving subject and in challenging shooting conditions. In addition, the Xperia 1 IV uses AI white balance to capture and correct colors under challenging lighting conditions, delivering true to life results.

Cinematography Pro Powered by CineAlta

The Xperia 1 IV allows the user to create cinematic-looking content with ease. Using the Cinematography Pro “Powered by CineAlta” feature, creators can record movies with similar parameters and color settings that professionals use. All rear camera lenses enable 4K 120fps high frame rate and up to 5x slow-motion shooting. In addition, with new multi-frame shootingx now available, even for cinema recording, Xperia 1 IV allows videos to be recorded with wider dynamic range without losing resolution.

The Ultimate Mobile Gaming Experience

Advanced features for gaming include a 120Hz display, 240Hz motion blur reduction and touch-scanning rate. In addition, the game enhancer feature includes L-y (low gamma) raiser, audio equalizer and voice chat optimisation to provide an immersive gaming experience. The Xperia 1 IV is powered by the Qualcomm® Snapdragon Elite Gaming for superior gaming performance. It also has a “Heat Suppression power control (H. S. power control)” function that reduces performance deterioration and battery degradation due to high temperature of the terminal while playing and connecting to a charger.

The Xperia 1 IV simplifies gameplay sharing with the “RT record” function that allows a user to record about 30 seconds before pressing the button. When using Game Enhancer with the new Xperia 1 IV, players can also livestream their gameplay to YouTube™. A gamer can check their audience’s comments even during live streaming, allowing them to communicate with the audience in real time.

The new Xperia 1 IV also facilitates better live streaming via a PC. It mixes all sounds including, the player’s voice, game music and the voice chat with other players, and sends it by single cable connection to a PC. Xperia 1 IV has been chosen as the official device for the PUBG MOBILE E-sports Global Tournament 2022.

Gaming Gear for Xperia 1 IV

Gaming Gear, exclusively for “Xperia 1 IV”, supports long-term play by its cooling function and live streaming of high-quality game play. Utilising this gear with Xperia 1 IV is currently under development.

This Gaming Gear is under development with supervision of the Japanese professional e-sports team SCARZ, and is scheduled to be launched in some regions in Autumn of 2022.

Listen to Music Authentically

The Xperia 1 IV has been engineered to deliver a truly authentic listening experience and implements audio tuned in collaboration with Sony Music Entertainment. The Xperia 1 IV features new full-stage stereo speakers to improve the sound of bass and bass drums. The speaker can also playback “360 Reality Audio (360RA)” sound. Its unique hardware decoding optimises sound quality when listening to music properly encoded on TIDAL and nugs.net[xiii]. It is equipped with “360 Reality Audio Upmix” that converts stereo sound sources into multi-channel sound sources like 360RA[xiv]. It also supports DSEE Ultimate, which can improve the sound quality of streaming services to close to high-resolution sound quality. The Xperia 1 IV also supports Bluetooth® LE Audio, via an upcoming software update, to reduce the sound delay to less than that of a conventional Bluetooth® connection when listening to content.

Meet Professional Recording by Music Pro

A new music recording function “Music Pro” enables professional-level recording with just the Xperia 1 IV, using unique cloud processing. Music Pro up-converts vocal sounds recorded with Xperia 1 IV as if it was recorded in a professional studio, allowing the user to record full-scale songs at home or on-the-go. The cloud processing removes unwanted noise from the recorded sound using sound source separation technology. It then reproduces the frequency response of Sony’s high-performance condenser microphones while producing reverberation similar to a professional studio[xv] experience. When singing and playing an acoustic guitar simultaneously, Music Pro can separate the vocal and guitar sounds and mix them at any balance. Sound recording and editing is free of charge, while cloud processing for high-quality sound is subject to a monthly fee.

Exceptional Immersive Entertainment

Boasting a stunning 4K HDR OLED 120Hz Refresh Rate[xvi] display, and no notches to interrupt the view on the 6.5” 21:9 Wide display[xvii], the Xperia 1 IV offers a uniquely immersive viewing experience. The display on Xperia 1 IV is 50% brighter[xviii] and includes Real-time HDR drive[xix] for improved visibility of both bright and dark areas, even in over-exposed environments.

The X1™ for mobile engine brings BRAVIA HDR remaster technology to everything the viewer watches. Even streaming content will have more contrast, color, and clarity. In the realm of cinema, watching a movie with Dolby Atmos® is an immersive experience with multi-dimensional sound flowing above and around. Now the viewer can experience Dolby Atmos® sound tuned in collaboration with Sony Pictures Entertainment.

New Service for Xperia “BRAVIA CORE for Xperia”

Xperia 1 IV exclusively offers BRAVIA CORE for Xperia[xx]xiii, allowing users to enjoy movies in high-quality 4K on the Xperia 1 IV’s 21:9 wide display.  People using the service are able to choose from hundreds of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s latest releases and classic blockbusters, go behind the scenes with Studio Access, and experience IMAX® Enhanced titles and immersive audio by DTS[xxi], all included with BRAVIA CORE for Xperia.

Performance and Design

Xperia 1 IV features the Snapdragon® 8 Gen 1 Mobile platform, which works on 5G[xxii] and Wi-Fi 6E[xxiii], with 12 GB of RAM and 256 GB of ROM, a 5,000 mAh battery with up to a 3-year long life[xxiv]. Quick charge gets to 50% battery in 30 minutes[xxv] and has wireless charging capabilities.

The Xperia 1 IV has IP65/68[xxvi] water and dust resistance and uses Corning® Gorilla® Glass Victus® on the front and back.

Xperia 1 IV’s signature super flat, super matte design comes in three colour options: Black, Ice White, Purple and blends minimalist style with premium quality materials and craftsmanship. It features a dedicated ergonomic shutter button, with an embossed finish for enhanced usability. 

Road to Zero

The Sony Group has set an environmental plan “Road to Zero” aiming for zero environmental load by 2050. As seen in our previous model, Xperia 1 IV uses zero plastic in the individual packagingiv by using paper as the packaging material that directly wraps the product itself. There is about 50% less packaging size compared to previous models with no charger and cable accessories, which reduces the shipping weight reducing CO2 emissions during transportation by up to 36%[i] per unit.

[i] HK Variant. Percentage may vary by variants.

Pricing and Availability: Xperia 1 IV & Accessories

The matching ‘Style Cover with Stand’ has the same innovative and modern design as the smartphone – it has a built-in stand, is made from anti-bacterial material[xxviii], and is designed to fit perfectly in the hand. The Style Cover with Stand will be available in black to buy from mid-June and will cost £30.

The Xperia 1 IV will be available to buy from 16th June 2022 for approximately €1399/£1299.  For detailed product information, please visit: https://www.sony.co.uk/electronics/smartphones/xperia-1m4

Those who pre-order the Xperia I IV between May 11th and June 15th will be eligible to claim a pair of award-winning Sony WH-1000XM4 wireless noise cancelling headphones, worth £279 – more information on where to buy available on product homepage link above.


[i] Xperia 1 IV features a periscope camera for continuous optical zoom and 120fps read-out sensor. Verified by Strategy Analytics’ SpecTRAX Service against the published camera specifications for over 20,800 smartphones. Correct as of the 11st May 2022.

[ii] All rear lenses.

[iii] Please use this feature by following the terms of use and the requirements related to live streaming determined by the live streaming service you use. Depending on the live streaming service you use, the conditions and specifications for live streaming may be added or to be changed unexpectedly. Live streaming restrictions may apply. 

[iv] Simulated result by Sony Corporation, based on actual usage profile using the same type of battery and USB charging. The life span of the battery depends on your usage.

[v] Packaging refers to the individual product box, as well as components such as in-box trays, spacers, wraps and sleeves.

[vi] Using a genuine Xperia charger and cable is recommended. Sold separately. Availability may vary.

[vii] Xperia 1 IV HK Variant. Percentage may vary by variants.

[viii] Some performance restrictions may apply.

[ix] This feature is available for the 24mm lens and the 85-125mm lens

[x] Video recording restrictions may apply. Available resolution of 4K 30fps.

[xi] Camera compatibility may vary.

[xii] Sony’s interchangeable lens camera or compact digital camera with UVC support are recommended.

[xiii] Third party terms, conditions, account, and fees may apply. Service availability may vary by market. The Tidal subscription has a duration of 3 months.

[xiv] Some features may not be available for all services and contents. The effect may vary depending on the contents.

[xvi] Display refresh rate may vary according to settings, contents, and applications used.

[xvii] Display ratios may vary based on content formatting.

[xix] Applicable for HDR10 contents viewing only.

[xx] For details on “BRAVIA CORE for Xperia”, please visit here(https://www.sony.net/bravia-core-for-xperia). Service availability may vary by market.

[xxi] DTS technology brings the highest quality audio to your favorite entertainment and devices.

[xxiii] Dependent on market availability, compatible equipment and network.

[xxiv] Simulated result by Sony Corporation, based on actual usage profile using the same type of battery and USB charging. The life span of the battery depends on your usage.

[xxv]  We recommend using genuine chargers and cables as XQZ-UC1 (charge and cable bundle). Availability may vary.

[xxvi] This device is water resistant and protected against dust. All ports and attached covers should be firmly closed. Do not put the device completely underwater or expose it to sea water, salt water, chlorinated water, or liquids such as drinks. Abuse and improper use of device will invalidate warranty. The device has been tested under Ingress Protection rating IP65/68. Sony devices that are tested for their water-resistant abilities are placed gently inside a container filled with tap water and lowered to a depth of 1.5 metres. After 30 minutes in the container, the device is gently taken out and its functions and features are tested. Note this model has a capless USB port to connect and charge. The USB port needs to be completely dry before charging.

[xxvii] HK Variant. Percentage may vary by variants.

[xxviii] This material is antibacterial but not antivirus. There is not guaranteed effect on viruses such as COVID-19. Antibacterial effect based on JIS Z 2801 testing.

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