One of the best things about a big show like Mobile World Congress is that you'll almost always come across something you didn't expect. Which is what happened when we stumbled on the VAIO Phone Biz.
It's due to go on sale in Japan from April for not a lot more than the equivalent of $400. It might not be destined for a U.S. launch, but it's a phone we've been keen to get our hands on.
Recapping the specs first, and the VAIO Phone Biz gives you a 5.5-inch Full HD display wrapped in an aluminum frame with cutouts top and bottom for the cellular anntenae.
Inside there's a Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 processor, which is particularly interesting because the Phone Biz supports Continuum. So far we've only seen Snapdragon 8xx chips provide the necessary horsepower to push Continuum, so we're given a little better look at the lower bar that's needed for it.
Other hardware includes 3GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage with microSD expansion and a 13MP rear camera. The Phone Biz isn't overly massive but is still quite large, which perhaps makes the 2800mAh battery a little disappointing.
But it's an impressive phone. The bezels top and bottom are a little large but the phone doesn't feel unwieldy. It's slim and light with gentle curves on the rear. A trade show isn't the place to really test performance, but the VAIO Phone Biz feels snappy and responsive. The camera focuses and shoots pretty quickly, and processing HDR photos doesn't take any more than a second or so.
It's a shame we won't be seeing much of it in western markets, but VAIOs first Windows 10 Mobile phone is an impressive thing. Solid hardware with a sleek design and that all important Continuum support that increases its appeal multiple times over. If it's a phone you'll be able to buy, definitely give it a look.
Be sure to check out our hands-on video above.
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Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine