Sony has recently announced that the company's latest flagship smartphones, the Xperia Z5 and Z5 Compact, will be made available for the first time in the United States.
Unlocked versions of the devices will be released on Feb. 7, which will mark the first time Sony will be selling one of its smartphones in the country since the Xperia Z3. The Xperia Z5 will be sold for $599.99 while the Xperia Z5 Compact will carry a price tag of $499.99.
The Xperia Z5 packs the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor with 3 GB of RAM and is powered by a 2,900 mAh battery that is said to be capable of providing users with two days of juice on a single charge. The Xperia Z5 Compact, on the other hand, is powered by a 2,700 mAh battery. Both smartphones, however, feature frosted glass at their backs, along with waterproofing even for the camera sensors.
However, news website The Verge reported that the Xperia Z5 models that will be coming to the U.S. will not have the fingerprint sensor located at the elongated power button on the side of the smartphone.
Android news website Android Authority confirmed the absence of the feature, which was one of the Xperia Z5's unique selling points, through a statement by Sony.
According to Sony, it was a business decision not to include the fingerprint scanner in the Z5 lineup for the U.S. There has been no further clarification yet on the matter, but as it stands, the lack of the feature could have a significant impact on demand for the flagship devices.
Sony could have an entirely valid reason to include the Xperia Z5's fingerprint scanner, but as one of the more popular features of the smartphone, the decision to remove it from the smartphone as it launches into a major market is questionable. It does not help Sony's cause, which includes equipping most flagship devices currently out in the market with a fingerprint scanner feature.
In addition to the aforementioned specs, the Xperia Z5 features a 5.2-inch 1080p display, while the Xperia Z5 Compact features a 4.6-inch 720p display. The smartphones pack 23-megapixel rear-facing cameras and are waterproof.
It remains to be seen if the rest of the features and specs of the Xperia Z5 and Xperia Z5 Compact will be enough to propel sales of the smartphones in the U.S. even without the fingerprint scanner.
The performance of the two flagship smartphones could be a factor on whether or not Sony will also bring the bigger Xperia Z5 Premium to the country. The smartphone, also powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor and 3 GB of RAM, has a 3,430 mAh battery and a 5.5-inch 4K display.
Previously, all the smartphones of the Xperia Z5 line were only available here through unofficial means, including purchasing from retailers and third-party sellers. The smartphones, however, were international versions, which meant that they had limited options for connectivity in the U.S. and did not come with any forms of warranties.