Hands On with the Sony Xperia Z4v for Verizon

Sony, as a company, is having a prolonged rough patch in the US phone market these days, but when they do get a phone to market here, they're often quiet gems. Sony is particularly skilled at crafting phones with premium materials and build quality. They're also good at leveraging their own Sony sensors to produce unusually powerful cameras. The Z4v replaces last year's Z3v in Verizon's lineup.

The key innovation in the design is easy to miss: it's the thin, glossy plastic band that separates each glass panel from the metal. It provides critical resiliency at the corners and edges, where a drop might damage metal or glass. The plastic also softens corners where metal might feel too sharp. Yet the clever design tricks you into feeling only metal and glass when you pick it up.

It feels premium, and solid. It feels as nice as it looks. The size is good for a modern flagship phone. A curved back would help it feel thinner, but it doesn't feel as thick as it looks. I expect most people will like the size and not mind that it's a bit thicker than Samsung's Galaxy S6.