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In response to your point about the camera only shooting 8MP still photos: Sony got a lot of criticism for cramming all those pixels into a small sensor, while also over-processing the images, especially when HTC showed that a lower number of pixels makes more sense for a smartphone camera.
With 8MP photos, the camera might perform better than the Xperia Z's 13MP camera, which defaults to 9MP anyway (so that the photos are in a 16:9 form, to suit the display's aspect ratio).
I rarely use the camera flash of my iPhone, neither for taking pictures in low-light, nor to act as a flashlight. But I do get your point: in the very few occasions that I do need to use the LED flash, it really does help, and I would not buy a phone without a camera flash. Though I'm not really sure if I can call the Xperia Z Ultra a 'phone'. As written in Gizmodo: "Sony's Xperia Z Ultra phone is… No. Hell no, it's not a phone."
It's a Phablet (not a Phoblet, not a Phone, not a Tablet).
After reading all the bad remarks about the 8Mp and absence of flash, I expected the worst picture quality from this phablet. But I am actually very pleased with the pictures. I even have the impression that the picture quality is slightly better than my old and now retired Samsung Galaxy Note (also with 8Mp). Especially for auto-portrait and dark and movement stabiliser, I am much happier with Sony Xperia Z Ultra than with Samsung Galaxy Note, Note 10.1 and Galaxy SII. I did get my phablet at slightly less than 300 euro, which is considerably less expensive than Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and that might influence my judgement...