Sony announces the Xperia Sola (aka MT 27i ‘Pepper’) with ‘floating touch’ technology

The MT 27i “Pepper” is finally official as Sony just unveiled it as the Xperia Sola. What separates this phone from others is the “floating touch” technology which allows users to hover their finger above the screen and use it as a moving curser. This is all done without touching the screen, but in order to open a desired link, a simple tap will be required. I’m not sure if this will really be useful, but cool nonetheless.

The Sola will also come with NFC and be compatible with Sony’s new SmartTags, which will be included in the box. If you like taking pictures, you will be happy to know that you can grab your first capture from sleep to snap in just over one second. Other notable features of the Sola include:

  • 3.7-inch Reality Display (854x 480) with Mobile Bravia Engine
  • 1 GHz dual-core ST Ericsson NovaThor U8500
  • 8GB internal storage (5GB user-accessible)
  • 5MP rear camera with 720p video recording
  • 1320 mAh battery
  • microSD, Bluetooth, GPS, WiFi, and NFC
  • Android 2.3 (upgradable to Ice Cream Sandwich)
Price is expected to be around  €329 ($430) and be available by mid-April. Hit the break for a demo video and the full presser
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Full press release:

 

Xperia Sola from Sony – The Smartphone with a sense of magic

  • Introducing “floating touch” navigation for magic web browsing without touching the screen
  • Easily open apps and launch actions in an instant with NFC and Xperia SmartTags
  • Reality Display with Mobile Bravia engine and fast capture camera boosted by a powerful dual-core processor

13 March, London, United Kingdom – Sony Mobile Communications today announced Xperia™ sola* as the latest addition to its portfolio of Android powered Xperia smartphones.  Complete with Sony technology, premium entertainment and innovative floating touchTM navigation, the NFC enabled Xperia sola comes equipped with Xperia SmartTags, allowing consumers to change their smartphone’s settings and applications to fit their lifestyle in an instant. Xperia sola will be available to consumers globally in black, white and red in the second quarter.

A floating touch of magic
Making its smartphone debut exclusively on Xperia sola, Sony’s unique floating touch lets consumers navigate the web by hovering their finger above the screen so it acts like a moving curser, without actually having to touch the screen.  Once the desired link is found it can be highlighted and a simple tap will load the page.  Floating touch will evolve with new user functionality and applications through software updates and engagement with developers.

Calum MacDougall, Head of Xperia Marketing for Sony Mobile Communications, commented; “Xperia sola comes with the power of Sony and a sense of magic with floating touch, giving consumers a fun new way to browse the web and latest technology to show off. With Xperia SmartTags out of the box and access to the latest content through Sony Entertainment Network, Xperia sola is perfect for consumers looking for ease of use and the best in entertainment in a smart and innovative smartphone.”

Simplify the everyday with SmartTags
Xperia sola is NFC enabled and comes with two NFC Xperia SmartTags in the box as standard to simplify consumers’ everyday smartphone experiences. By touching an NFC Android smartphone on a SmartTag, a pre-configured profile in the smartphone will launch. The two SmartTags included with Xperia sola can be personalized with up to 10 commands. Out of the box one is ready for the living room to turn on Wi-Fi™ and launch Google™ news and weather apps, and the other one for the bedroom, which turns on the alarm and switches to silent mode. Xperia sola supports NFC pairing, allowing consumers to enjoy great connectivity with other NFC smartphones, applications and services by tapping their smartphones together.

Powerful entertainment anytime, anywhere
Xperia sola boasts razor sharp clarity with Reality Display powered by Mobile BRAVIA® Engine, xLOUD™ and 3D surround sound audio technology delivering crisp and loud sound, and a 1GHz dual-core processor for super fast performance.  Xperia sola also comes with fast capture to take the camera from sleep to snap in a little over a second with a single key press.

Consumers can also access premium entertainment experiences with Sony Entertainment Network**, where they can watch the latest Hollywood blockbusters on Video Unlimited or listen to millions of songs*** through Music Unlimited.

Key features for Xperia sola

  • Floating touch navigation for an easy web browsing experience
  • NFC enabled and Xperia SmartTags in the box to enable quick app loading and easy content sharing
  • 3.7” Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine gives razor sharp clarity
  • Powered by a 1GHz Dual Core Processor for super fast browsing
  • xLOUD and 3D surround sound audio technology for crisp and loud listening
  • Direct access to Sony Entertainment Network* with pre-installed Video and Music Unlimited** apps
  • Launches on Android platform 2.3, upgrade to Android 4.0 during summer 2012

* Xperia sola will be bought into the Italian market under the name “Sony Xperia™ sole” and in China P.R. under the name “Sony Xperia™ MT27i”
**Sony Entertainment Network services are subject to availability by region, please see www.sonyentertainmentnetwork.com for more details.
*** The number of available songs varies by region.

Xperia sola specifications
All services mentioned in this leaflet may not be available in every market.

Colours

  • Black
  • White
  • Red

Facts

  • Size: 116 x 59 x 9.9 mm
  • Weight: 107 grams
  • 1 GHz STE U8500 dual-core processor
  • Google Android™ 2.3 (Gingerbread), upgradeable to Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Camera

  • 2D and 3D Sweep Panorama™
  • 5 megapixel camera
  • 16x digital zoom
  • Auto focus
  • Face detection
  • Flash/Photo flash
  • Geotagging
  • HD video recording (720p)
  • Red-eye reduction
  • Self-timer
  • Send to web
  • Smile detection
  • Video light
  • Video recording

Music

  • 3D surround sound
  • Album art
  • Bluetooth™ stereo (A2DP)
  • Clear bass
  • Clear stereo
  • Music Player
  • PlayNow™ service
  • SensMe™
  • TrackID™ music recognition
  • xLoud™ Experience

Internet

  • Google play™
  • Bookmarks
  • floating touch™
  • Google™ search
  • Google Voice™ Search
  • Google Maps™ for Mobile with
  • Street view and Latitude™
  • NeoReader™ barcode scanner
  • Pan & zoom
  • Web browser (WebKit™)

Communication

  • 2 speakerphones
  • Call list
  • Conference calls
  • Facebook™ application
  • Facebook inside Xperia™
  • Google Talk™ application
  • Noise suppression
  • Twitter™ (with Timescape™ integration)
  • Xperia™ Timescape™

Messaging

  • Conversations
  • Email
  • Google Mail™
  • Instant messaging
  • Multimedia messaging (MMS)
  • Predictive text input
  • Sound recorder
  • Text messaging (SMS)

Design

  • Auto rotation
  • Gesture input
  • Keyboard (on-screen, QWERTY)
  • Live Wallpaper
  • Picture wallpaper
  • Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine
  • Screenshot capturing
  • Touch screen

Entertainment

  • 3D Album
  • Accelerated Adobe Flash Video
  • Media browser
  • Motion gaming
  • Radio (FM radio with RDS)
  • Sony Entertainment Network
  • Video streaming
  • YouTube™

Organiser

  • Airplane mode
  • Alarm clock
  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • Document readers
  • Notes
  • Setup guide
  • Stopwatch
  • Tasks
  • Timer

Connectivity

  • 3.5 mm audio jack (CTIA)
  • aGPS
  • Bluetooth™ wireless technology
  • DLNA Certified®
  • Micro USB support
  • Media Go™
  • Media Transfer Protocol support
  • Modem
  • Native USB tethering
  • NFC
  • PC Companion
  • Synchronisation via Microsoft® Exchange ActiveSync®
  • USB High speed 2.0 support
  • USB Host
  • Wi-Fi®
  • Wi-Fi® Hotspot functionality
  • Wisepilot™ turn-by-turn navigation


All services mentioned in this leaflet may not be available in every market.

Display

  • 3.7” Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine
  • 854 x 480 pixels
  • 16,000,000 colour TFT
  • Scratch-resistant glass

Memory

  • 8 GB internal storage (up to 5 GB user-accessible memory)
  • microSD™ memory card slot (supporting up to 32GB)

Networks

  • Quad EDGE/GSM/GPRS 850, 900, 1800
  • W-CDMA Band I, II, V and VIII

Battery life

  • Talk time GSM: Up to 6 hrs*
  • Standby time GSM: Up to 470 hrs*
  • Talk time UMTS: Up to 5 hrs*
  • Standby time UMTS: Up to 475 hrs*
  • Music listening time: Up to 40 hrs
  • Video playback time: Up to 6 hrs
  • Battery: 1320 mAh (built-in) typical, 1265 mAh minimum

*Values are according to GSM Association Battery Life Measurement Technique. Battery performance may vary depending on network conditions and configurations, and phone usage.

In the kit

  • Xperia™ sola, embedded battery, 2 SmartTags, stereo headset, charger, micro USB cable for charging, synchronisation and file transfer, and user documentation.

“Sony” and “Sony Entertainment Network” are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sony Corporation. All other trademarks or registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

 

» See more articles by Robert Nazarian


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