Sony’s creator-focused Xperia Pro arrives with 5G in the US


The Xperia Pro, Sony’s first smartphone with 5G in the US, is launching for $2,499.99. Sony is targeting the device at professional users, who it hopes will use its HDMI input to turn the phone into an external camera monitor and its 5G connectivity to quickly upload or live-stream footage. Sony says it currently has no plans to release the Xperia Pro in Europe. The Xperia Pro’s hardware is very similar to last year’s Xperia 1 II. That means it’s powered by a Snapdragon 865 processor with a 4,000mAh battery, and around the back, there are the same 12-megapixel wide, telephoto, and ultrawide cameras. The Xperia Pro also includes a 6.5-inch 21:9 aspect ratio OLED display. At $1,200, the Xperia 1 II was already an expensive smartphone, and the Xperia Pro is over double its price. But Sony argues its 5G support and HDMI input could be incredibly useful to professional users. Ever since it started teasing the Xperia Pro early last year, Sony has emphasised that it’s a device for professional users, and its price tag makes this more obvious than ever.

Amazon’s Alexa can now act on its own with new features

Amazon is enabling a new feature today that allows Alexa to proactively complete tasks around the house, based on your habits and frequent requests. Alexa has been able to sense these habits and ask about them since 2018 – the company calls them “hunches” – but before this update, Alexa would ask permission before acting on something. If the new proactive hunches are enabled, though, Alexa will skip asking for permission for a task and just do it. While proactive hunches seem like they could make Alexa a lot more useful. Amazon says that these automatic actions have to be turned on from the Alexa app and that you can toggle automatic actions on and off for each compatible product that Alexa has a hunch about. Along with new abilities, Amazon is also rolling out its Guard Plus security subscription service. The service can alert you if Alexa picks up on certain types of sounds in your home and offers access to human agents who can call emergency services on your behalf. You can sign up for Guard Plus for $4.99 per month.