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Sony’s Xperia Z3+ overheats, but it’s not as bad as you think

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sony z3 plus

The Sony Xperia Z3+ is a controversial smartphone, and that’s partly thanks to the Qualcomm processor that powers it.

At the phone’s heart lies the Snapdragon 810, a chip that’s been blasted for its alleged overheating problems since before its public debut.

Following the unveiling of the Xperia Z3+, complaints have trickled out about the handset becoming far too hot under heavy usage.

We’re talking things like graphically intensive gaming, running benchmark tests, and shooting 4K video.

Fortunately, Sony has come clean and admitted there are heat issues with its latest flagship. It’s even promised to ship a hotfix that’s due to land in the summer.

Of course, the phone is still on sale which means people are buying it sans the Snapdragon patch. But how bad are the claimed overheating issues?

AndroidPit tested the the device by shooting both 4K and AR video, and immediately noticed issues.

It claims using these camera modes can result in the app crashing anywhere between three seconds and one minute after recording starts.

We tested the device in our own offices and found that, although the camera app did crash, it wasn’t as bad as the aforementioned report suggests.

When we shot 4K video for the first time, it took two minutes and three seconds for the overheating warning to pop up. Then 27 seconds later, the app closed down.

Related: Sony Xperia Z3+ vs Sony Xperia Z3

z3 plus warning

A second 4K test saw the phone hold up significantly longer, with the warning coming at five minutes and 56 seconds. It then held out until eight minutes and 20 seconds before shutting down.

The final 4K shoot gave a warning at four minutes and two seconds, and shuttered at seven minutes and 53 seconds.

Sony recommends users don’t shoot 4K for more than two minutes on any Xperia device, so it hasn’t broken any promises in that respect.

We also tried the AR mode, which superimposes weird faces onto your own using the front-facing camera.

The first time we tested the ‘AR Mask’, it managed a mere minute before a warning popped up, and subsequently closed at one minute 48 seconds.

The second test was, once again, slightly better, with a warning at one minute and 36 seconds, and a crash at two minutes and 12 seconds.

The third gave a warning at one minute and three seconds, with the app finally shutting down at one minute and 39 seconds.

Related: Best Android Smartphones 2015

z3 plus crash

With both the 4K and AR tests, the handset was very noticeably warm, especially towards the top of the device – this isn’t particularly unusual, however.

So what does all this mean? Well as far as 4K goes, everything appears to be above board.

Shooting 4K video is an incredibly demanding task for a smartphone, and Sony admits that anything above two minutes is risky business for its handset’s processor.

The AR mode’s failure is slightly more concerning, as a heat warning after just one minute’s use doesn’t feel good enough from a flagship smartphone.

If Sony’s hotfix can repair these issues then it’ll fix one of the biggest complaints about the Xperia Z3+, although it’s unlikely the Snapdragon 810’s tarnished reputation will ever really improve.

Mark Southee

June 24, 2015, 8:10 pm

As my Z1 virtually melted after 12 months (with Sony claiming it was fine) I won't be rushing out to get another.

Calin

February 10, 2016, 11:09 am

Actually the overheating is worse. I forgot my camera and was trying to take some photos with Z3+. Application shutting down after a photo or two. I cooled the phone with running water (at least I had this option) but didn't help much, application closing after 4 photos. Since I was walking around, I did not have the running water all the time. Even cooling the phone with car AC didn't help for too long, once out of the car I got back to square one: a photo or two, then shutdown.
In addition, if wearing polarized sunglasses, the screen is not visible if rotated horizontally (i.e. 90 degrees from normal portrait view, in order to take a landscape photo).

Viktor

October 5, 2016, 1:16 pm

Well I had this piece of crap for 1 year...worst phone i've ever had. It overheats after a few pictures (not 4k video!!!!) and slow as shit. Gags on freaking facebook :DDD It self-restarts like 3-4 times a day, it get's more than 50C hot, can't use camera coz it shuts down, oh and the battery... :D that's a joke too. Please, please don't buy this phone. Anything but this...you will be very dissatisfied in a very short time....i was and i still regret choosing it. It would just overheat bcoz of charging lol. Sony is a big liar about this phone, they didn't run the tests properly i guess. Try to use it for a few months! You will understand.

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