Not only is the honeymoon state over and done with between Sony and Ericsson, so is the entire marriage that formed the Sony Ericsson union. Sony on Thursday announced it will acquire Ericsson's 50 percent stake in the mobile partnership, effectively making the mobile handset business a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony.
Craving a new smartphone but don't have a pocket full of cash to spend? As luck would have it, Sony Ericsson's Xperia 10 has been spotted in some Best Buy stores selling for $1. Naturally you need to sign up for a 2-year service agreement, and the special pricing is only available for new customers, but there's another reason why you might want consider this one.
The Samsung Galaxy S II, Galaxy Tab 10.1, LG Optimus 3D and Sony Ericsson Xperia Play grabbed the big headlines at Mobile World Congress 2011. If you thought CES was fun, the annual Barcelona event will have had early adopters reaching for their wallets and breathlessly hunting for preorder opportunities. Hit the jump for a quick take on news, pending announcements from the major handset providers, and a brief analysis of what it all means for you.
Pocket-Lint claims to have the scoop on just when we can expect to see the mysterious PlayStation phone. According to the site, the gaming phone will be launched at MWC in February, and will be available to consumers a few months later in April. Sony Ericsson is scheduled for a Sunday evening press conference at MWC where the phone will be revealed.
The PlayStation phone's specs are not confirmed, but sources have called out a 1GHz Qualcomm processor, 512MB of RAM, 1GB internal storage, and a screen in the 4-inch neighborhood. The big selling point of the PlayStation phone will obviously be the gaming aspect, with a large slide out game pad. The controls in the leaked photos appear to consist of the standard PlayStation buttons, a d-pad, and a long trackpad with dual virtual analog stick capability.
If this time line is accurate, will you be waiting for this handset to drop?
Thank your lucky stars you're living in the age of the Internet, and we're not saying that because of those naughty *tube sites. We're talking about hardware porn here, and in this case, the rumored PlayStation Phone.
Codenamed "Zeus Z1," this potentially awesome device was caught on camera in a handful of videos (one of which we've embedded below) and posted over on Engadget. If these are fake, they're really good ones and we'll admit to being fooled.
The Zeus Z1, as it appears in the videos, looks pretty much exactly the way you would expect. Rather than sporting a fold-out QWERTY keyboard, a classic PlayStation gamepad jets out instead. You can spot a PlayStation icon on the device, and there's a second video that offers up a 14-second peek at the PlayStation app.
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Sony Ericsson might be working with Sony on a mobile gaming phone many are referring to as the 'PlayStation Phone.' Sony Ericsson chief Bert Nordberg didn't exactly play down the rumor, saying he's aware of the speculation on just such a device.
"There's a lot of smoke, and I tell you there must be a fire somewhere," Nordberg said. "Sony has an extremely strong offering in the gaming market, and that's very interesting."
Citing "another person familiar with the matter," WSJ says Sony Ericsson's upcoming gaming phone will likely run Google's Android OS and the games will probably be available through an application.
Taking shots at Nokia’s ailing smartphone platform Symbian is almost too easy these days, and it would seem another hardware manufacturer is announcing that it wants off the bandwagon in favor of Android. Sony Ericsson has been developing Android based phones for quite some time now, but many were wondering just how much longer they would continue to support more than one mobile OS, and now we know. “We have no plans for the time being to develop any new products to the Symbian Foundation standard or operating system,” Aldo Liguori, a spokesman for the London-based company, said by telephone today. Liguori confirmed remarks made by Chief Technology Officer Jan Uddenfeldt to Swedish technology newspaper Ny Teknik.
Symbian continues to hold onto a tenuous lead in the smartphone market, but its share has declined from 51 percent to just over 41 percent over a one year period. With the loss of Sony and Samsung the Symbian Foundation’s only high profile partner is Nokia who for one reason or another continues to use the OS to power its high end smartphones. To be fair Sony hasn’t formally withdrawn from the Symbian Foundation, but with no new products being planned it sounds more likely this will evolve into a common law divorce, a separation without all the messy paperwork.
Symbian keeps falling into the same category as RIM, powerful but faltering. What would it take for these guys to get back in the game? Let us know what you think after the jump.
For mobile gamers, the PSP Go was a bit of a disappointment. But if these new rumors are true, Sony fans may be getting a gaming gift of the smartphone variety. Sony Ericsson is said to be working on an Android 3.0 based smartphone with a slide-out game pad in place of a standard QWERTY keyboard. The device is being supported by Google, and the games will be made available through a special area of the Android Market. Other phones would likely not be able to access these high end games unless they met internal hardware and button specs.
The phone is reportedly going to have a screen in the 3.7-4.1 inch range with capacitive multitouch abilities. Internally, it is expected to run a 1GHz Snapdragon CPU. There will apparently be enough power to run PSP level games on the device. The Android 3.0 Gingerbread OS is still a mystery, as Google hasn't released details about the upcoming platform update. This mystery phone may launch with the Xperia branding, or it may have the PlayStation brand slapped all over it.
Android's gaming experience has, thus far, lagged the iPhone. A project like this could pique the interest of gamers. Rumored titles for the platform are Modern Warfare, God of War, and Little Big Planet. We're not sure about the idea of replacing a keyboard with a game pad, but those looking to game on the go could appreciate it. Would you use this device as your smartphone?
Skype continues to conquer new territory, the latest being three Sony Ericsson smartphones based on the Symbian platform, the VoIP software company announced today.
"Applications for communication and social networking are incredibly popular with mobile users. The opportunity to use a world-class app like Skype, in combination with the excellent applications and capabilities we have already integrated into our Satio, Vivaz, and Vivaz pro devices, will make up a compelling package to our customers," said Kristian Tear, Executive Vice President and Head of Sales and Marketing at Sony Ericsson.
Just like with other platforms, those who own one of the above Symbian devices will be able to make free Skype-to-Skype calls to other Skype users around the world, send and receive IMs from individuals or groups, share pictures and videos, receive calls to their existing online number, and pretty much everything else you can do with Skype on the desktop.
Sony Ericsson today published the specs and a video of the Xperia X10, its debut Android smartphone, which was hitherto known by its code name “Rachel”. It can be expected to be a guaranteed fixture on the list of the most powerful Android phones by the virtue of its 1GHz Snapdragon processor.
As for the software, the X10 will run Android 1.6 Donut. In addition to apps found on the Android Marketplace, apps for this phone will also be available through Sony Ericsson’s PlayNow arena service. The X10 will feature a 4-inch TFT touchscreen, an 8MP camera with LED flash, WiFi, A-GPS and 3G. The company is expected to release the X10 in the first quarter of 2010.