Bezel-free smartphones seem to be emerging as the hot new design trend in the mobile industry, with manufacturers employing all sorts of tricks and workarounds to maximise display size and move closer to an all-screen experience.
As one of the top mobile manufacturers, Sony is well aware of this trend, and has recently confirmed that it is also looking into bezel-free designs for its future smartphones – but will not be rushing to produce them any time soon.
In an interview published on the company's Japanese website, Sony Mobile's head of product planning Toshiyuki Ichino said his team is conscious of the demand for phones with more expansive screens, but is seeking to balance this against the need to continue producing phones that are comfortable to hold and use.
This thinking is exemplified by recent Sony handsets such as the Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact, which feature reduced bezels above and below the display compared to their predecessors, but avoid the notch-style design employed by rival devices like the iPhone X and OnePlus 6.
Mr Ichino said Sony remains keen to only increase screen space when this can be achieved without trading away the usability of other key functions.
In a translation provided by TechRadar, he said: “If you interfere with the area required for cameras, speakers, antennas, etc – as a result of expanding the display area – camera image quality, sound quality, antenna sensitivity etc. may be sacrificed.
“Based on the premise of realising the total user experience that we want to offer, the balance of the screen sizes considered as optimal at this time will be the [current] shape.”
However, he acknowledged that further design improvements and the emergence of new technological advances will make it possible for Sony to shrink the bezels on its phones even further – meaning an all-screen Xperia could be a possibility for the future.