Is Sony Set To Finally Return To T-Mobile’s Lineup? Magic 8-Ball Says “Signs Point To Yes”

Screen Shot 2013-04-07 at 10.24.38 AM

It’s taken me the better half of two weeks to confirm this unicorn was definitively floating around in T-Mobile’s world, but it seems Sony may be ready to make a return to the Magenta network. After having an “it’s complicated” status for what seems like an eternity, I’ve managed to “confirm” via three separate sources that the Xperia Z (Yuga) is being tested.

Before you set aside your interest in other upcoming Android launches on T-Mobile, I’ll remind that it’s only in testing right now and there’s absolutely no guarantee the device will ever hit store shelves. This is the same type of scenario we saw with the HTC One X+ image that leaked all the way back in September. As it turns out, T-Mobile had tested the device but ultimately opted against launching the device.

With that said, I’m eager to see T-Mobile and Sony change their relationship status from “it’s complicated” to “in a relationship.” So keep your fingers crossed that the device successfully tests on T-Mobile and we see Sony make its long-awaited return to the Magenta network. It’s been far too long and the Xperia Z is an excellent device and one we imagine would show Sony in its best light against T-Mobile’s Android-heavy customer base.

The Xperia Z features:

  • 5.0″ TFT 1920×1080 display
  • Android 4.1 Jelly Bean
  • 1.5GHz Qualcomm snapdragon quad-core processor
  • Adreno 320 GPU
  • 13 megapixel camera Exmor RS camera
  • 2 megapixel front-facing camera
  • Water resistent up to 30 minutes
  • Glass-fiber polyamide frame

Learn more about the Xperia Z at Sony’s website.

Quick note: While we know the Xperia ZL has the required 1700 LTE bands for T-Mobile, we’re being told that the Xperia Z is the model T-Mobile is currently testing.

Screen Shot 2013-04-07 at 10.24.47 AM

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  • kev2684

    gasp! T-Mobile is set to get all the flagship phones this year!

    • this Magenta’s on Fiiiiiirrrreeee!! (in the words of Alicia Keys)

      • kev2684

        T-Mobile 2012: Could’ve had it all.
        T-Mobile 2013: Has it all.

    • JustSaying

      They are getting LG’s Optimus flagship phone too right?

  • blkalleykat

    My last Sony Phone from T-Mobile was the TM-506, ahh the flip phone days

    • pbxtech

      Mine too.

      Used as a modem – worked very well.

    • I loved my TM-506! That was an awesome phone. It is the only phone I’ve kept for full contract as well!

    • Ted C

      That was possibly the last great flip phone ever made. I loved that phone back in 2008

  • why is T-Mobile getting all the flagships? Because all the major manufacturers realize from Samsung that you sell WAY more phones by releasing on all caries then having an exclusive with just one.

    except Nokia, Nokia is still fcking clueless….

    • techymexican

      well there have been rumors that the luma 928 may also be going to not only Verizon but also T-Mobile. So they are starting to get it.

      • Well think about it. Since T-Mobile is moving towards the new Uncarrier plans, they really don’t need to eat the price subsidy of each device so we’re basically going to see most of the Best Flagship phones on Magenta going forward. Just so long as T-Mobile orders a high enough bulk of devices, they won’t lose any money on them.

        • taron19119

          First of all T-Mobile well not lose money cause u pay full price and T-Mobile will make a profit off the phone faster and T-Mobile ceo said T-Mobile will get more high end phones

        • did you even read my comment? I said they “WONT” eat the money aka lose money.

    • RonJeezy

      I never did understand why any one phone would be exclusive to any one carrier. It worked for the sidekick back in the day but the Motorola Razor should have shown everyone that when a phone is available to everybody you will of course sell more. Duh…

    • HTC still hasn’t realized it. the 64gb variant is still exclusive.

      • dom

        exclusive at launch only. because htc didnt plan properly thats the only reason

    • superg05


      • I disagree. I think HTC’s UI is great. Nokia would have to build an awesome UI to keep up with the competition, but they might be a bit too late if you ask me.

        • tomnewtn

          I think stock Android is awesome. A Nokia or HTC with stock would be stellar.

        • Quan Bui

          ewww HTC UI is great??? LOL well at least there’s one person that thinks so. If you’re a savvy Android user, you’d prefer a stock/vanilla ROM. I mean, you could easily coat it with anything from ADW EX to NEXT 3D Launcher. Android is sooo customizable, but unfortunately, many people simply don’t realize, or they just think it’s too “advanced” for them to understand lol. These are the same people that don’t bother trying to restart their phone before asking other people for help -_-

        • iamnumbersix

          Customizable is exactly so. My wife’s Android is skinned with Launcher 7 so it functions like her windows phone that broke. My son uses the MiHome Miui Launcher, and I have discovered 360 Launcher which is the smoothest functional launcher I have used.

      • if it wont be above htc, it would be atleast the same. HTC delivers nokia build quality in android market :) i love both!

      • lastmilefire

        If Nokia hadn’t killed off Meego, they could easily be back in the thick of things. My N9 i still one of the best looking phones ive ever had. Love everything about it, except for the processor.

      • Michael Lococo

        No way! Why would they want to be just another also ran when they are the star of the show! Look at T-Mobile’s market share falling… they carry mostly Android.

      • Quan Bui

        I completely agree. If Nokia released their high-end Lumia phone running on Android, I’d cop that over the HTC One/Samsung GS4.

    • Michael Lococo

      We’ll see what happens now that Nokia will have a version of the 920 on Verizon and T-Mobile soon.

  • mingkee

    This is strange why T-Mobile doesn’t add ZL as it has all bands T-Mobile needs. In addition, T-Mobile should add Ion to prepaid lineup as basic LTE phone.

    • Derrick

      Would be nice if they just offered both. Especially considering the ZL is cheaper because its not dustproof/waterproof. The ZL is available for preorder on sony’s store though for $759 with 4/18 expected shipping date.

  • thepanttherlady

    I think I’m in love!

  • pc jona

    too bad the z’s screen sucks horribly

  • J-Hop2o6

    LOL David. Adreno 320 is the GPU. The CPU (inside the S4Pro/8064) is Krait 200.

  • Newmexican

    While this in itself is good news, I will pass. Played with the Nexus 4 over the weekend and decided 4.7 inches is the limit that I can handle. So it will be the Nexus 4 or the HTC One to replace my 4 months old Samsung Relay 4G crap phone. I hope that the monster phone fad is over soon and good phones will show up in the 4-4.5 in range. Right now high end seems to assume that users want to carry a tablet on their ears.

    • jonathan3579

      You’d be surprised how little the difference is between 4.7-5″ screens. The difference is all made by the chassis which when done properly, is totally negligible.

      • ^This. After holding the S4 a couple of weeks back i realized that 5″ can fit in a manageable form factor (and this is coming from a Nexus 4/ Z10 user.

        However, after holding the HTC One… 1080p at 4.7″ is just outrageous, And then there’s DAT INDUSTRIAL DESIGN, and well… yeah. So it just so happens that I fell in love with 2 4.7″ phones for different reasons but the point that I’m trying to make is that 5″ is doable if done right.

    • Care to explain why you hated the relay 4g? I’m just curious and wanna hear a feedback on an average joe vs. the review sites. I planned on getting one but I don’t want to let go my grandfathered data plan w/c doesn’t work on their branded phones.

      • Newmexican

        Came from the HTC G1 and G2. Both worked reliably for 2+ years. The Sammy Relay has more problems after 4 months than the others after 2 years. Also the Relay acts like it feels: cheap plastic. Easily scratched, physical keyboard is flaky, accelerometer, gyro, compass do not properly work. I also realized that a bad physical keyboard is worse than a properly configured Swype keyboard. I decided that I do not need the physical one anymore as it is really poor. So my next phone (and I have to pay full price, as I am still under contract) will be anything but a Samsung.

  • Susan

    With the introduction of the Sony Xperia, Tmobile has another great opportunity to abandon buyers less than one year after purchase by blocking software updates.

    Tmobile can offer unique service and support as they did for the Nokia 710, being the only carrier in the world to block updating the phone to Windows phone version 7.8.

    Exciting times for Tmobile, where the CEO swears almost as fast as they abandon customers and products.

    • TechHog

      Tell us how you really feel.

    • $9926629

      And lay everyone off, as well.

  • mreveryphone

    Like I said before, more phones, more cash, better coverage! Period!

  • Anonymouse

    wow! seeing that this phone only supports HSPA+ and euro/asia LTE ill be damned if t-mo can get sony to build an AWS LTE version!! otherwise im happy the mobile gods heard our prayers.. the only phone left is the rumored motorola x

    • actually it would be pretty easy to get Sony to make an AWS LTE version considering T-Mobile, Verizon, and Att all own and use/plan on using that band. Not to mention commonly used chipsets already contain them, so they wouldn’t really need to be built from scratch.

  • Derrick

    The Xperia Z been available in the UK as long as the One has been delayed in the US. And there’s still no locked down release date for the Z in the US. I’m over these announced phones not even beginning to be rolled out til months after the announcement. Hopefully our carriers stateside can get manufacturers to roll out phones in a timely manner like in the UK. Hopefully the Z makes it pass testing for t-mobile though, it would’ve been my pick if it were already available here.

    • TechHog

      The carriers are the ones causing the delays.

      • TechNut69

        the delay for the One has nothing to do with the carriers, That is an issues with HTC not being able to convince Suppliers that they will follow through on orders. HTC had to cancel many orders for parts for previous models recently after seeing demand for HTC devices fall and many suppliers downgraded them so they have a harder time getting orders prioritized by suppliers.

    • crazychef

      I just got my xperia z avfew days ago and i love it. Because i can connect it with my PS3, sony tv, tablet, laptop. bought it at negri electronics

  • Real Nice Phone, great design, killer specs with a 13 mp rear camera and a 2.2 mp front camera and let’s not forget removable sd card support. For a big phone it feels great in the hand and just love the overall appearance. T-Mobile is killing it this year.

  • Fishwiz45

    This IS definitely my unicorn! Please please please be true!

  • Oscar Alvarado

    The one phone that might have me uncertain about my getting the Nexus 4.

  • gwhyte01

    Bullshit…..Let me get this straight. Since they stop doing upgrades, and start charging full price for phones, they want to get the high end phones? man these guys are playing money games huh.

    • RobotChupacabra

      There are no “money games” or whatever other conspiracy you’re thinking of. It’s just a phone they’re testing.

    • I think your comment is Bull.

    • MagicORL93

      Since T-Mobile isn’t making any money on the phones by selling them at cost, I don’t see that being a very fun money game for them.

      • Herb

        If you don’t think T-Mobile is profiting off of selling phones, you’re crazy. They get a discount for buying in bulk and then charge somewhere in the middle and take the profit. I heard they’re now paying commission for phone sales so I would guess the company has to be making some money there.

        • MagicORL93

          I’m not making any commission off of phone sales. I get paid the same whether its a gravity txt or a s3. My commission is purely structures around postpaid and prepaid sales and whether the customer is prime or subprime. So if T-Mobile is making money off of the phones, I’m not seeing it.

  • Nice. Benefit to T-Mobile as a company from the Uncarrier plans is that they can get the high end devices but not have to subsidize them by having customers pay full price. They seem to be getting all the flagships this year. Getting a Sony device would be big. Can’t remember the last one that T-Mobile sold. I don’t think they’ve ever carried a Sony smartphone, it had to have been a flip phone.

  • DuckDodger

    I like the design. Since it has the SD slot I would consider replacing my Galaxy S3 with it even Though it doesn’t have a replaceable battery.

  • socrateos

    If T-mobile gets Xperia Z or Tablet Z, I will immediately move to T-mobile.

    • Quan Bui

      yes. gimme the Xperia Z aaallll daaaayyy. It has everything I would possibly need in a smartphone…. and then waterproof =) cuz ya never know

  • James

    Remember in 2012 when T-Mobile phones were 99% from samsung and they only had the s3 and note 2 for flagships and now they are getting all the good phones like htc one, iPhone 5, galaxy s4, Nokia lumia 928, Sony Xperia Z, and LG Optimus G2 (rumored). Good job T-Mobile! The only manafucture left is Motorola and I think they will also get the rumored Motorola X PHONE ;) doing great so far T-Mobile! You are gaining customers again after 4 years of loosing them!

  • SocalTeknique

    Too big. I want a powerful iPhone sized Android phone. Its that too much to ask for? Nb4 the trolls, I have a Nexus 7 for all the big screened jobs.

  • TMoFan

    Very generous phone. I would have considered the xperia t if it came our way and was disappointed when it didn’t along with the hox+. Now I look at our lineup and I’m impressed. I hope we see more flagships as a consequence of the uncarrier plans!

    • TMoFan

      Whoops meant gorgeous

      • Anonymouse

        you can get one on ebay. make sure its the LT30A as this one is the unlocked generic version for north america.

  • tonkotsu

    the ZL is a much better fit for tmobile…

  • rob

    I feel like it’s 2011 again and we’re getting a ship load of flagships and nice mid-rangers again. I think it’s also time to bring the MyTouch and SideKick back as FLAGSHIP devices NOT as mid-rangers or even low-ends. And of course the all mighty G series. I know you visit this site T-Mobile executives, listen to us!!! Demand and Supply!

    • NYCTheBronx

      I love SideKick and I love my MyTouch’s. I hope they bring them back also along with the G series, supposedly they are working on a G3 and it will be released under T-Mobile. But I’m with you bro. Bring back some of those lineups!

  • Ziich

    Please let this be true. i was gonna buy the international hspa+ version since i am on the $30 prepaid plan with 5gb but this is even better it’ll support aws now and lte by the end of the year! no more edge for me :)

  • Ziich

    i wonder if it will be cheaper than $650 as well. The iPhone 5 16gb (650) is $580 t-mobile

  • Zac

    Important Question: Would they really have the TMo logo on the thing if it was only in testing and not an impending launch??? Seems like they’d rock some sort of unbranded version for testing. Am I way off?

    • See HTC One X+.

    • impasse

      i imagine they’d want to know exactly how a final production model would look (at least, hardware-wise), but..

  • steveb944

    Water resistant?! Yes!!!!

  • Wilma Flintstone

    I am interested in this device simply because it has a MicroSD card slot. If it comes to Tmo, I’ll have to definitely consider it. Still waiting on the Moto X series phone before I decide.

  • Of course. This is the only android phone that would make me change my mind from keeping with Nokia or going with Apple… too many choices…

    • thepanttherlady

      I’ve never heard the complaint of “too many choices” regarding T-Mobile before!

      It’s kind of nice. :)

  • JaswinderSinghJammu

    I am seriously thinking about going with the Nokia 928 for camera and battery life and of course T Mobile LTE

  • thepanttherlady

    I hope if this comes to T-Mobile they get the purple one. <3 I think I'd get this one regardless of color but it would be icing on the cake.

  • Dons

    Why would I pick the Z over the upcoming new smartphone well to me simple water proof, dust resistant, expandable memory which the one lags of and much much more the SG4 well im sure ima see alot of that around so yea Z wins.

  • I think it is Good decision for t mobile to line up the Sony Devices the currently Sony devices are quite well resulted and cheap.

  • Ted C

    I have the Xperia S and using it on T-Mobile in Miami (refarmed 3g) and it is a spectacular phone. I will definitely buy this if it comes to T-Mobile.

  • Hubert Szustak


  • Marc Klein

    This would be cool as SONY makes excellent phones.

  • D31ft

    Yesss!!! Please love Sony and been excited about the Z I need it in my life water proof and beautiful design