Our Opinion

The Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra is a slightly better phone, but the Samsung Galaxy J8 is significantly better value for money. Which phone should you buy? Depends on how much your want to spend!

Samsung Galaxy J8  Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra 
Samsung Galaxy J8 Sony Xperia XA1 Ultra
Buy Now Buy Buy
Excellence Score
37.4
38.5
Value for Money Score
70.5
62.2
Price ₹ 16,490 onwards ₹ 21,799 onwards
Launch Date (India) Jun, 2018 Jul, 2017
Expected Launch Date N/A N/A
Smartphone OS Android 8.0 OreoLow likelihood of getting updated to next Android version Android 7.0 Nougat, Upgradeable to 8.0 OreoLow likelihood of getting updated to next Android version
Touchscreen Yes (Capacitive) Yes (Capacitive)
Screen Size 6 inches 6 inches
Screen Resolution 720x1480 pixels (~ 274 pixels per inch) 1080x1920 pixels (~ 367 pixels per inch)
Tall Aspect Ratio / Minimal Bezels Yes
Scratch Resistant Display Yes, Corning Gorilla Glass
Display Features Super AMOLED, Infinity Display, 2.5D Curved Glass N/A
Full Physical QWERTY Keypad
Processor 1.8 GHz 2.3 GHz
Processor Type Octa Core Octa Core
Processor Name Qualcomm Snapdragon 450Ranked #57 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks Mediatek Helio P20Ranked #39 in Mobile Processor Benchmarks
GPU Adreno 506 Mali-T880MP2
RAM 4 GB 4 GB
3G Yes Yes
4G Yes Yes
VoLTE Yes Yes
WiFi Yes Yes
GPS Yes Yes
Bluetooth Yes Yes
Connecting Port USB USB-C
Primary Camera 16MP + 5MP 23.0MP
Camera Auto-Focus Yes Yes
Camera Flash Yes Yes
HD Video Recording Yes (Full HD) Yes (Full HD)
Other Camera Features 16MP: F/1.7 Aperture, 5MP: F/1.9 Aperture F/2.0 Aperture, 24mm Focal Length, Phase Detection Autofocus (PDAF), Hybrid Autfocus, 1/2.3" Sensor Size, Geo-tagging, Touch Focus, Face/Smile Detection, HDR, Panorama, Stereo Sound Recording in Video, Video HDR, SteadyShot
Secondary Camera 16.0MP 16.0MP
Secondary Camera Features LED Flash, F/1.9 Aperture F/2.0 Aperture, 23mm Focal Length, 1/2.6" Sensor Size, Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS), Autofocus, LED Flash, Full HD Video Recording
Internal Memory 64 GB 64 GB
Expandable Memory Slot up to 256 GB up to 256 GB
Contacts Storage Unlimited Unlimited
SMS Storage Unlimited Unlimited
Music Player Yes Yes
FM Radio Yes Yes
Dual SIM GSM+GSM GSM+GSM
Thickness 8.2 mm 8.1 mm
Weight 177 gm 188 gm
Audio Output 3.5mm jack 3.5mm jack
Water Resistant
Battery Capacity 3500 mAh 2700 mAh
Battery Standby N/A 658 hrs
Battery Standby (3G) N/A 708 hrs
Battery Talktime N/A 13.00 hrs
Battery Talktime (3G) N/A 12.00 hrs
Fast Charging Yes, Pump Express+ 2.0
Other Battery Parameters N/A N/A
Fingerprint sensor Yes
Other Features ANT+ Support Fast Battery Charging (Pump Express+ 2.0); NFC; Miracast; Google Cast; Noise Filtration
2-minute Review [Positives]
  • Decent design and build quality (though it's plastic - would have been nice to see a metal or glass design)
  • Has a new, modern 'infinity edge' 18:9 AMOLED display, that stretches from edge-to-edge, and makes the device easy to use with one hand
  • The Samsung Experience UI skin on top of Android is a pretty decent skin and packs a lot of features - there’s Bixby, Face Recognition, which works fine and there are features like themes, game launcher, Samsung Pay mini, Samsung Cloud, games launcher, one handed mode and more
  • Decent dual camera setup on the rear - especially in proper lighting conditions, the camera takes good images, and low-light performance is not too bad either
  • Decent front camera too - captures generally good images with natural colors
  • Good call quality, with good noise cancellation
  • Dolby Atmos surround sound
  • Very good battery life - the big 3500 mAh battery, combined with the low power Snapdragon 450 processor and a 720p HD+ display gives you a recipe for some very good battery life - the phone comfortably lasts a whole day and if you use it judiciously, you can even make it last for two days
  • Very good build quality and a premium feel in the hand - even though it's a mid range device, it could pass for a flagship Xperia
  • This is also a classic Sony design, and one that very much stands out from the crowd of standard gray rectangles (for better or worse)
  • Close-to-stock Android interface, with added (and useful) stamina-branded battery-saving modes, and Sony's own multimedia apps
  • Good performance, backed by the efficient Helio P20 chip (comparable to phones powered by the Snapdragon 625)
  • Very good, gigantic, edge to edge, 6-inch display - high maximum brightness and contrast, good outdoor legibility, and good color accuracy - the Xperia XA1 Ultra is tailor-made for the YouTube-watching, selfie-snapping, Insta-sharing crowd that have the phone in their hands all day
  • Decent rear camera - good with details and dynamic range
  • Good selfie camera - again captures lot of detail, has wide dynamic range and renders accurate colors, plus it's got the flash to (just barely) rescue shots in extremely low light
  • Good loudspeaker
  • Good audio quality via audio jack too
  • Solid, consistent battery life - lasts a day of moderate use - even though the battery capacity is not on the high end of the spectrum, the excellent efficiency comes courtesy of the efficient Helio P20 chipset, and the light skin
2-minute Review [Negatives]
  • No ambient light sensor, which is a big miss at this price point
  • Fingerprint & face recognition is on the slow side
  • While the display is pretty decent, it could have had better resolution
  • The display also has significant bezels, whereas a lot of modern phones with tall displays these days have very little bezels
  • Also lacks a notification LED
  • Average performance considering the price bracket, thanks to the budget Snapdragon 450 at the core, which is these days more commonly seen in phones under Rs 10k - while day to day performance is alright, but push the phone a bit and it will start to stutter - moreover, the Samsung Experience 9.0 has a ton of unnecessary and sluggish animations, that don't help
  • The dual rear camera setup is decent, but the portrait mode is pretty mediocre, with very ordinary edge detection - the blurring feels mostly unnatural
  • The speaker is both oddly placed (on the right side of the phone) and tiny and cracks at higher volume
  • No fast charging support
  • No compass
  • Uses the old micro-USB standard instead of a modern USB Type-C port
  • On the whole, the Samsung Galaxy J8 is hard to recommend - the likes of Redmi Note 5 Pro and ZenFone Max Pro bring faster processors, better displays and more premium designs, and now with the Poco F1 around the block, the J8 is an even harder sell
  • No fingerprint scanner
  • Performance is good, but in terms of raw power, a step behind the best performing phones in this price bracket, which have a Snapdragon 820 processor or similar
  • The fact remains that phones this big remain a niche for now, and are certainly unwieldy to carry around - it is mainly targeted at a certain subset of users who want a device geared towards multimedia with decent cameras
  • Mediocre video output from the primary camera - soft and lacking in detail - and no 4K video recording support either
Expert Reviews
  1. Hard to justify the cost
    gadgets.ndtv.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. Performance is its only serious drawback
    bgr.in in-depth Read Review »
  3. A good performer beaten by the competition
    news18.com in-depth Read Review »
  4. Skip this and look at Mi A2, Honor Play, or Poco F1
    firstpost.com in-depth Read Review »
  5. fonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  6. indianexpress.com in-depth Read Review »
  7. economictimes.indiatimes.com in-depth Read Review »
  8. beebom.com in-depth Read Review »
  9. indiatoday.in in-depth Read Review »
  10. business-standard.com in-depth Read Review »
  1. gsmarena.com in-depth Read Review »
  2. phonearena.com in-depth Read Review »
  3. gadgets.ndtv.com in-depth Read Review »
  4. digit.in in-depth Read Review »
  5. indiatoday.intoday.in in-depth Read Review »
  6. livemint.com in-depth Read Review »
  7. techradar.com hands-on Read Review »
  8. androidauthority.com hands-on Read Review »
  9. expertreviews.co.uk hands-on Read Review »
  10. stuff.tv hands-on Read Review »
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Official Website Official Website » Official Website »
Unofficial specs? N/A N/A
Individual Review 2
  • Individual Review 2
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