As has been the case in the past years, Sony opted to host its MWC 19 press conference on the first day of the Barcelona-based event. And true to form they did not rock the boat much with the unveiling of three new devices.

With the flagship Xperia 1 not really standing out from the competition, it’s the mid-range focused Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 Plus that look the more interesting device, especially as they’ll likely offer more value for money when they arrive locally.

As such we decided to give them both a long look at the Sony booth earlier this week, and these are our initial thoughts.

Both devices have exactly the same stylings, with the Plus naturally being the larger.

From an aesthetic standpoint they look similar to many of the Xperia devices seen in past years, especially when you flip the phones over and check out the back cover. They’ve also been given a matte finish for their aluminium bodies, which adds a nice touch.

This too though is nothing new to Xperia devices, with Sony switching between glass-heavy and aluminium-heavy designs over the years, but still retaining the core aesthetic of the Xperia brand.

So what’s different here?

Well the screen is the main focus with a new 21:9 aspect ratio for both the 6″ and 6.5″ displays of the Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 Plus respectively. Both screens are FullHD+, but do not set themselves apart in terms of crispness and clarity. The extended length does lend itself to watching videos though, but we cannot say whether that applies for longer viewing periods.

Despite the increased, or rather newly ratio-ed screen real estate, there’s still a fairly large bezel at the top of both devices, so those keen on all-screen might be left wanting.

As for the rest of the devices, everything appears to be in order, although all these phones are demo models, and as such may be different from the ones that land in SA. Bearing that in mind, however, the Xperia 10 and Xperia 10 Plus look primed to keep the tradition of solid, if very uninteresting Xperia smartphones alive and well.

Whether that’s enough to distinguish them in a highly competitive mid-range market remains to be seen.