We saw Sony’s Xperia S at CES this year, and even heard it would be arriving in Canada at some point. Well, in a press release today, Sony announced that “a limited number of Xperia S smartphones will be available exclusively at Sony Stores across Canada, beginning April 17th.” This is a page right out of the Apple handbook: release a phone in your retail stores first, then give it to the carriers. This type of staggered availability certainly helps increase the hype and demand for a device since everyone wants what is hard to get. It also helps perpetuate the illusion of high demand when the news covers the lines that form outside retail locations. With smartphones, retail locations make sense since most people want to feel what a phone is like in their own hands before making a buying decision. Even Samsung is toying with the concept of a store within a store. Is this a trend?
As for carriers, Sony says the Xperia S is “compatible with the Rogers wireless network” but doesn’t mention it’s exclusive. This could mean that the device is unlocked and could be compatible with other networks, but we don’t know that for sure yet.
The Xperia S will ship with Android 2.3 Gingerbread but is slated for an update to Ice Cream Sandwich later this year. It sports a 4.3-inch Reality Display at 1280 x 720, a whopping 12MP camera that can take 1080p HD video, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 32GB of internal storage, NFC, and HDMI. All this can apparently be had for $99.99 on a 3-year plan with Rogers.
Check out the full press release after the break.
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