Sony’s Mobile World Congress hasn’t been as busy as Samsung’s or HTC’s, which both just took the wraps off their respective flagship handsets for 2015. But alongside the Xperia Z4 Tablet, a powerful slate boasting an eye-catching display, the Japanese firm has also unleashed a new handset in the form of the Xperia M4 Aqua. While not as grandiose as the aforementioned efforts of rivals, the M4 is a waterproof, mid-range device that packs quite a punch, and with a design that looks every bit as slick as some of its top-tier Xperia Z3, it may well hit the sweet spot with the consumer market.

The Aqua moniker gives the game away a little, but in case you hadn’t twigged, the new Sony smartphone is waterproof, just as many of the company’s devices have been lately. The rugged handset is crafted for the active and careless alike, and judging by the aesthetics, should also appeal to folks conscious of style.

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It doesn’t deviate too much from the design of products like the Xperia Z3, but this isn’t a particularly bad thing. It’s thin, light, and even though its price point stands at €299 – equating to US$335 at the current exchange – it still offers an impressive array of internal hardware.

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Sony’s specialty in the mobile game has long been its camera technology, and the Xperia M4 Aqua does not disappoint in this regard. Boasting a 13-megapixel rear-facing shooter with f/2.0 aperture, allied to a 5-megapixel front camera, the M4 offers a point-and-shoot experience that far exceeds the typical mid-range standards, and could even give some higher-end devices a run for their money.

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There’s also a Snapdragon 615 processor, a 5-inch 720p display, and as you’d expect, 4G LTE connectivity, but the real clincher – just like the Xperia Z4 Tablet – is the two-day battery life that Sony is touting. Of course, time will surely tell as to whether these claims can be substantiated, but at a point when many Android vendors are focusing on octa-core, 64-bit chips that seem like overkill, Sony is keeping everything simple, functional, and practical.

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Indeed, it’s hard to fault this latest effort from Sony, and while the headlines will be dominated by the high-profile launches at this week’s MWC, the Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is a dark horse that, in our eyes, ticks all the boxes.

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The Xperia M4 will go on sale this spring.

Thoughts?

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