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Sony Xperia Go review

Sony Xperia Go V3

The Sony Xperia Go is the best rugged handset on the market, but its outdated Android 2.3 Gingerbread operating system and bloatware stop it having any real appeal to the mass market.



Sturdy handset that survives more than the usual wear and tear, waterproof, decent camera.


Bloatware, outdated Android 2.3 operating system, unattractive.



Overall Rating:

3 Star Rating: Recommended

Price: £229

Manufacturer: Sony

The Sony Xperia Go builds on the legacy set by the company's previous Xperia Active handset, targeting the niche rugged smartphone market, promising users a handset capable of surviving more than the usual wear and tear.

Design and buildSony Xperia Go in water
For the Go, while Sony has kept the same hard-line, angular design seen on its more expensive Xperia S and P handsets, it is significantly less streamlined and visually pleasing. This is largely because the company has been forced to make several major concessions to ensure the device managed to get an IP67 rating - a scoring system that measures the device's resistance to elements like water and dust.

This means that while the Go can survive water submersion up to one-metre deep for 30 minutes and take significantly more punishment than your average smartphone, it isn't all that pretty. The device features a significantly more plastic feel than the S and P, and features plugs that cover its headphone and Micro USB ports. The plugs are fairly ugly sticking awkwardly out from the device's sides, though those with a taste for a more industrial looking smartphone may like their inclusion.Sony Xperia Go plug

Despite its awkward plugs we found the handset was fairly comfortable in hand, measuring in at 111x60x9.8mm and weighing 110g. Designed for people with active lifestyles or jobs that require them to occasionally get their hands dirty, we found the Go is a really nice size, being pocket friendly and easily fitting into most shoulder straps for those that want to use it while exercising.

ScreenSony Xperia Go interface
The Xperia Go features a 3.5in 320x480 touch-screen that features the same Bravia engine technology seen in other more expensive Sony smartphones. The technology means that despite its modest resolution the Go's screen provides sharp and clear graphics even when used in less than ideal outdoor lighting conditions and viewed at awkward angles.

The Go's screen durability also impressed us, with our tests proving that the smartphone does live up to Sony's scratch-proof claims. Additionally as an added perk, the Go's screen features technology that lets you use it while wet, something most other smartphone displays struggle with.

We submerged the device in a bowl of water to test the screen's usability when wet and found that just after being removed the screen immediately recognised all our commands, coming close to matching its responsiveness while dry.

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Processor: 1GHz dual-core
RAM: 512MB 
Display: 3.5in, 320x480 touch-screen
Storage: 4GB
Camera: 5MP rear-facing
Connectivity: GSM/HSPA+, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC
Ports: Micro USB, microSD card slot
Operating system: Android 2.3 Gingerbread 
Dimensions: 111x60x9.8mm
Weight: 110g

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Alastair Stevenson

Alastair has worked as a reporter covering security and mobile issues at V3 since March 2012. Before entering the field of journalism Alastair had worked in numerous industries as both a freelance copy writer and artist.

View Alastair's Google+ profile

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