Even though Sony has yet to release a hit Android device, but that’s not stopping the company from trying.
The company announced three new Xperia smartphones, as well as the revamped Xperia Tablet S, today at its IFA press conference in Berlin.
It’s surprising that Sony is showing off its new phones now, when the company announced its current lineup earlier this year. But I suppose Sony wanted to have something fresh for the holiday season.
The Xperia T is the company’s new flagship smartphone. It sports a 4.6-inch HD Reality display, a dual-core 1.5 Ghz Snapdragon S4 processor, PlayStation certification, and a 13-megapixel camera (which Sony says can be turned on instantly from being idle). The Xperia T will launch with Android 4.0.4 “Ice Cream Sandwich,” but Sony says it will offer an upgrade soon to Android 4.1 “Jelly Bean.” The phone will be known as the Xperia TX in some markets, and it will be available in the next few weeks in black, white, and silver.
In the mid-range is the Xperia V, which has a smaller 4.3-inch screen and LTE 4G connectivity. It also features a 1.5 Ghz dual core chip, PlayStation certification, and Ice Cream Sandwich. The phone will be available in the fourth quarter in blank, white, and pink variations.
Finally there’s the Xperia J (one wonders what Sony will do when it runs out of letters), Sony’s new low-end smartphone with a 4-inch display and 5 MP camera. Not surprisingly, Sony had little to say about its new budget device. The company says it will be available in the fourth quarter in black, gold, white and pink.
On the tablet end, Sony is sticking with its unique design with the Xperia Tablet S. The company’s first two Android tablets were notable for their distinctive looks (one was a dual-screen clamshell, the other resembled a magazine folder in half). The Xperia Tablet S continues the magazine-like design of Sony’s last Tablet S model, but it has also lost some weight and added plenty of power.
The new tablet is between .35 and .47 inches thick and weighs just 1.26 pounds (the past Tablet S weighed 1.31 pounds). It features a Tegra 3 processor, a 9.4-inch HD screen, and a large 6,000mAh battery that should last around 10 hours. Just like its higher end phones, Sony will ship the tablet with Ice Cream Sandwich, but it promises an upgrade to the faster (and prettier) Jelly Bean update. The tablet also includes a “Watch Now” app for watching live TV (which will require a cable subscription).
The Xperia Tablet S will be available on September 7th starting at $400 with 16 gigabytes of storage. There’s also a 32GB model for $500 and a 64GB model for $600. Sony also showed of a Microsoft Surface-like keyboard accessory, along with a new stand, charging cradle, and other add-ons.