When the new pocket computer was received, I checked out these features.
Initially I used Sony's factory installed image of Android-8
advancing to Android-9
Pie after five updates.
Later I installed LineageOS-16.0 based on Android-9
Pie, and then
I upgraded to LineageOS-17.1 based on Android-10
Quiche, getting almost
no difference on these tests.
The first column, labelled
Stock, gives the
out of the box
experience with very little hacking; the next one is for LineageOS-16.
In summary, most of the features that the pocket computer is supposed to have, performed with no hassle out of the box. These items had issues:
Details of some of the checkout tests and other miscellaneous items may be found on the More Info page.
out of the box, or after a clean installation of CyanogenMod.
|Conf||It needed editing a configuration file or running a setup GUI.|
|Add-On||Needed additional or patched software: download it; follow instructions to compile and/or install it; it works.|
|Fiddle||As with |
Add-On, but it required some workarounds in the procedure, which might seem minor to an experienced user but which might prevent a newbie from making it work.
|Hack||So you call yourself a guru? This one will challenge your skills. But this guru eventually got it working.|
|Fail||I wasn't able to get this one to work, at least so far.|
|InProgress||I'm still working on this item.|
|*||A prerequisite did not qualify for the |
Confrating, but once that was set up, the listed component worked with no further hassle.
|Does it boot at all?||Box||Box|
|Yes, no problems with the initial setup procedure related to power, the bootloader, image signatures, or basic OS functioning.|
|Check dimensions and mass||Box||Box|
|Mass (measured): 169 grams. Bounding box: 143 x 70 x 10 mm. Vendor quotes it as 142x70x9.7mm, 171g (measurement matches within calibration). Density (based on bounding box): 1.69 g/cc. It will sink like a stone, and it has no IP (Intrustion Protection) rating (the Galaxy S5 was IP67).|
|Using the 1.5 amp USB charger that comes with the phone, charging took 178min (3hr, extrapolated from 0% to 100%) or 160min (2.7hr, measured 15% to 100%).|
|Battery life under excessive load: With all 8 cores maxed out doing SHA512 sums, it ran for 277min (4.6hr).|
|Subjective impressions are that the Pioneer is frugal with energy, even more so than the Galaxy S5. In (my) daily use it uses only 30% battery. Other people likely use more.|
|Overnight standby with Wi-Fi and cell radio on, it uses 3% battery. Without its SIM, i.e. with the radio off, it uses 2%.|
|See the battery detail section for quantitative test results, and here are some suggestions for power saving.|
|Processor (details tested on LOS-16)||Box||Box|
|Voice chat (T-Mobile)||Box||Box|
|Cellular Data (on T-Mobile, GSM or LTE)||N.T.||Box|
|Wi-Fi in Master Mode (Tethering)||N.T.||Setup|
Works (needs to be set up). IPv4 only.
The phone can be in both master and managed mode at the same time, so the
client's packets will go out via Wi-Fi. The Galaxy S5 with CM-12
Hardwarewise, Bluetooth worked out of the box on both the stock image and CyanogenMod. Pairing worked the first time, following standard procedures for the devices. Partners tested: 66 BT Sport headphones, ThinkOutside keyboard, Linux laptop. Follow the link for details of what was tested and for how to pair with these devices.
|Audio digital signal processor (DSP)||N.T.||N.T.|
It's hard to prove that the principal audio codecs (Vorbis, MP3) are running on the DSP.
|Play streaming audio||Box||Box|
The test media for the above were MP3 and OGG files via Chrome's builtin player (on the stock image). Also tested: MP3 via Icecast.
|While some phones can transmit HDMI from their USB port, the Pioneer can't, according to the Sony support site.|
|Does it work? Yes on the stock OS and LOS-16. Oops, there's a problem on LOS-17, apps can see the satellites but can't get the service to return a position. Research suggests that this isn't really the phone's fault; when the satellite signals are adequate, GPS works fine.||Box||LOS-16 LOS-17|
|NFC (Near Field Communication)|
|Connecting to Galaxy S5 which has NFC, to transfer data to the new phone: NFC worked fine. (Transfer app didn't.)||Box||N.T.|
|Payment (Google Pay): … Details here. The problem is with paranoid security, not the NFC hardware.||N.T.||Not Really|
|IRDA (Infrared remote control)||N.T.||N.T.|
|The Pioneer does not have an infrared transmitter.|
|To enroll fingerprints, use Settings - Security & Location - Lock Screen & Security - Fingerprint Manager .||Conf||Conf|
|Use fingerprints to unlock the lock screen. You don't have to press the power button first. It takes some practice to get the finger to be recognized reliably. The sensor or finger gets dirty quickly. After I cleaned both the sensor and the finger with 70% isopropanol (and let dry), in 17 trials I got 13 unlocks, 3 allegedly dirty, and 1 not recognized.||Box||Box|
Magnetic north is underground in the northern hemisphere, quite a
lot even in Los Angeles (32 degrees north), and the indicated side of
the phone has to be facing north and down to produce a positive value.
+X is rightward (toward power button),
+Y is up (toward voice phone speaker), and
+Z is to the front.
The uniaxial values are around 32 uT for X, 40 uT for Y and 42 uT for Z,
meaning this is the value when the phone is turned so the field is parallel
to that axis and the others read zero.
The Galaxy S5's magnetometer was more consistent among axes.
The magnetometer is at the upper left corner about 2cm from each edge. Iron objects, like a screwdriver or masonry reinforcement of course will affect the readings.
|On the Terran surface the reported magnitude of
acceleration is between 9.75 and 10.05 m/s2; correct value is
When I turn the device 180 degrees, the magnitude typically shows a zero offset of 0.15 to 0.3 m/s2; it's hard to be precise with this tester. Example: portrait orientation, Y=9.795, upside down, Y=-9.433, half their sum is 0.181 m/s2. The Galaxy S5's sensor was better, typically 0.04 m/s2.
The axis sensors are reasonably aligned with the chassis. As seen by the Phone Test for Android app (Dastra), +Y is south, i.e. in portrait orientation with the speaker (north) up, Y will be about plus 9.8 m/s2. Remember that gravity is downward on Terra. +X is left (left edge down gives plus) (reverse from Galaxy S5), and +Z is rearward (display up gives plus).
|Proximity (face) sensor||Box||Box|
|When you're making a voice call and the
phone is close to your face, the display and touch screen are deactivated.
When you take it away, they return. This seems to work reasonably and
can be useful; one person with a broken proximity sensor complained of
opening random apps with his ear.
Proximity is recognized when you are around 3cm away from the phone;
tester apps report 8cm but that's not the real distance.
The sensor is at the top, the small hole between the |
Sonylogo and the front camera. The ambient light sensor is in the same hole.
|The indicator LED is in the upper right corner. Some of these need to be turned on in the settings. In LineageOS-16 you can adjust the color and brightness of the battery notifications.|
|Battery full (after charging reaches 90%)||Green||Green|
|Battery very low (15% or below, adjustable)||Red flash||Red flash|
|Boot and Shutdown||Blue pulse||Off|
|SMS or similar message waiting (in LOS the default is green, but I tweaked it to match stock.)||Blue flash||Blue flash|
|Ambient Light Sensor||Box||Box|
It works, and influences the display
brightness if turned on. The light sensor is in the top row between
|Rear camera with auto focus and flash||Box||Box|
|Specs: 23Mpx, f/2.0, 84° wide angle, calculated about 5530x4150px, empirical 5984x3376px or 5520x4144px. This is about 1.10 pixel/arcmin. Photo file size: 69MiB uncompressed; the stock camera app compresses to 11.6MiB (16%, JPEG quality setting of 97%); OpenCamera compresses to 3.36MiB (4.9%, JPEG quality 75%). Both of these can be adjusted in settings. Size varies depending on how much detail is in the image.|
|Rear camera works? Yes.||Box||Box|
|Subjective image quality: looks good.|
|Auto focus: Works effectively.||Box||Box|
|Resolution: A photo of text 12 arcmin (0.0035 radian) high is clearly readable, 13.2px high. This would have glyph elements approaching 1 arcmin. The nominal resolution of human vision is 1 arcmin (0.00029 radian).||Box||Box|
|Flash: Yes, it flashes. Also works in flashlight mode.||Box||Box|
|Color rendition: Determined by the software. Stock (Sony) camera app comes out realistic. LineageOS (AOSP) camera app does a good job. I use OpenCamera, which also does a good job.|
|Low light performance: Good enough for barcode scanning at 1.0 lux.|
|Photo Gallery, taken with the camera.|
|Video capture (with stock app): a 21sec video took 47Mb. MP4 codec, 1920x1080px (what frame rate?) Results were good, limited by the cinematographer's skill. If, as is likely, the frame rate is 30fps, an uncompressed image would occupy 3.92e9 bytes, so it was compressed to 1.2%.||Box||Box|
|Specs: 8Mpx, f/2.4, 120° wide angle. No auto focus, no flash. Calculated about 3250x2450px.|
|Front camera works? Yes.||Box||Box|
|Color rendition: decent.|
|Video capture or video chat: Testing with IP Webcam, which obtained and transmitted the image normally.||Box||Box|