Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc vs. Apple iPhone 4: Smartphone showdown

Which is the better phone – Sony Ericsson's XPERIA Arc or Apple's iPhone 4?

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc Android smartphone

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc Android smartphone

Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc vs. iPhone 4: Software

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc runs the latest 2.3 Gingerbread version of Google's Android operating system. Version 2.3 of Android means the XPERIA Arc has a revamped keyboard, better copy and paste, improved power management, and a slicker user interface compared to previous versions of Google's mobile platform.

The XPERIA Arc includes Sony Ericsson's Timescape application, which first appeared on the XPERIA X10 Android phone. Timescape groups social networking and phone communications into a single, graphically intense interface; each communication event on the phone forms a 3D box that you simply flick your finger up and down the "spine" to scroll through. However, Sony Ericsson has included Timescape as a regular app rather than integrate it into the XPERIA Arc's UI, and it has also dumped its Mediascape integration. This means the XPERIA Arc is unlikely to suffer the same Android software update delays as the XPERIA X10 did.

The iPhone 4 runs Apple's iOS4 operating system. It offers a familiar swipeable home screen enhanced by folders, and the consistent Apple UI look and feel extending across all of the standard applications. If you have never used an iPhone before, you can expect a device that is easy to pick up and use, a well-populated App Store, and excellent multimedia capabilities. The iPhone's iPod integration ensures it remains one of the best music smartphones on the market, while mobile Web browsing is fast and efficient.

Though the streamlined iPhone experience has won many fans, Apple's closed platform means the iPhone 4 doesn't offer the same flexibility as smartphones like the Sony XPERIA Arc. The iPhone has an inferior notification system to Android phones, and it doesn't let you customise and display live widgets on your home screen. By the same token, the iPhone interface and overall user experience are far more polished than what is currently on offer from Android phones.

Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc vs. iPhone 4: Other features

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc Android phone comes with an HDMI port, meaning you can connect it directly to a high definition television. Along with DLNA connectivity for wirelessly sharing media content, the XPERIA Arc seems well designed for multimedia sharing.

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc's 8-megapixel camera also boasts Sony's 'Exmor R' image sensor, claiming better performance in low-light conditions.

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc's 8-megapixel camera also boasts Sony's 'Exmor R' image sensor. The company claims this gives higher sensitivity with less image noise, meaning it should perform better in dim lighting than traditional mobile phone cameras.

The iPhone 4 can't boast HDMI connectivity, but its camera is widely regarded as one of the best on a smartphone, surpassed only by the superb 12-megapixel Nokia N8. The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc is powered by a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, has 512MB of RAM and comes with a microSD card slot for extra storage. Strangely, Sony Ericsson has only provided a paltry 320MB of internal memory.

The Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc Android smartphone will launch in Australia in early April on the Optus and Vodafone networks. Pricing has yet to be announced.

What do you think about the Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc and the Apple iPhone 4? Tell us in the comments below!

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Tags apple iphoneSony EricssonGoogle Android phonesmobile phonesAndroidGoogle Androidiphone 4smartphonesSony Ericsson XPERIAApple

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

Good Gear Guide

22 Comments

Tim Tran

1

I have two questions. Who won and what is the total minimum cost of both the sony ericsson xperia arc and the iphone4.

paul k

2

Xperia unlock outright is about $670 compared to $859 for the 16gb iPhone 4. You have to factor in an SD card for the Arc though ($80ish). As to who won... I'd say this admirably balanced article is expecting you'll make that decision yourself, based on the factors that are important to you. If you like polish, a sharper screen, or iTunes is important probably the iPhone. If you like the flexibility of android, or a lighter phone with bigger screen, Arc.

dan

3

sony ericsson rules and its way better than the iphone 4

Sam Vig

4

The Xperia arc rocks and is much much better than the Apple. Apple slaves..... Sony Rocks ...

chickeee

5

Also iPhone has a (lo-res)front facing cam and Facetime vid conf (wifi only) , a popular app among Apple users

Son Do Yong

6

The Xperia Arc is the best ! Seriously Sony Rules

Liam

7

Sony Ericsson has way many other things to offer than just applications!! Sony is the Best

Gohku

8

iPhone 4 is outdated, wait till iPhone 5 comes out and let there be a review

benson russell

9

Ive not had a i-phone 4 but did have a 3, & while im sure the 4 is updated, u've still gotta get ur apps and music from apple (itunes/apples app store etc). That was a major prob for me, as with my sony-ericsson arc(& evn the x10i had b4 it) i have access to android market which has free apps/music etc. The arc is slim, very attractively designed, has expandable memory memory(via sd-card) and HDMI, plus sony 'BRAVIA' graphics technology. + the media player inyerface is better, & easier to use than the x10i. Its awesome

jksd

10

this comparison is sooooo biased.....they sides with the erricson soo much. they didnt take into account accelrometer, gyroscope, IPS technology, user interface , RAM ( though this one is a very controversial one).
and really dude....retina display is the highest resolution that can be achieved at this state of technology, (anymore improvemnet in resoultion, the human eye wont be able to pick any difference thus retina is the best it will ever be).
BTW the processor is actually a draw not "unknown" as stated above, this is cuz they are both 1GHZ. saying all this its obvios the design of the arc is much more superior . however i believe that the iphone interface is much more.

psycho

11

sup ya'll... i owned both the arc and iphone 4, but up to now i still can't decide on which phone will be my permanent phone on a day to day basis. each phone has its advantage over the other. arc has a better camera but iphone 4 has the prestige, but if you will notice almost many of the android apps/games originated first from iphone, therefore it is the android copying ihpone apps

Seraphic

12

I do not support apple as most of the apps are ports from other consoles some examples are final fantasy and gta china town wars i prefer arc

jksd

13

oi seraphic..
getting the games off other consoles is good...and why won't u like apple if it copied the games from another console anyway? its so that the ppl who play on other consoles that are not transportable can enjoy the same app on their phone. AND "most" of the apps are copied??? i researched and found that 2.3% of apps are off other consoles...so epic fail by u. AND always check which company the app is made by. apple has to buy the app of the company to actually sell it on the appstore.

HITHERE

14

quick question, what does the messaging look like? as in similar to an iphone where it is easy to see past history or like an average phone where past texts are stored as they arrive?

banuna

15

i have one questions:
how i can refresh my music library (phone Sony Ericsson XPERIA)?

stephanie

16

Does the sony experia arc hav video calling?

Ray

17

Personally i perfere android phones over iphones b/c in the past iphones havnt really wrked 4 me nd all the experiences ive had with android are way better then the iphones, but no offense 2 ppl who lke the iphone apple phones b/c its ur opinion. Oh nd the arc does have a front camera but no facetime!!:(

Luka

18

Bitch please, iphone has HDMI-out

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