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By 13 March 2012 | Categories: news

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Sony Mobile Communications (formerly Sony Ericsson) today announced its new Xperia sola (116 x 59 x 9.9 mm, 107 g) smartphone, the latest addition to the Android-powered Xperia range.

The Xperia sola boasts a 3.7" (480 x 854 pixels, 265 ppi pixel density) Reality Display, which features Sony’s Mobile Bravia engine for enhanced screen clarity. This smartphone is powered by a 1 GHz STE U8500 dual-core processor and sports the company’s xLOUD and 3D surround sound audio technology to boost the audio experience.

Although it will be operating on Google’s Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) mobile operating system (OS) by the time of its launch, Sony did state that an upgrade to Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) will become available later this year. Also onboard is a 5 MP camera that can record HD-ready (720p) videos, as well as 8 GB of internal storage (only five GB will be user-accessible though) which can be expanded via the microSD memory card slot that supports cards up to 32 GB in size.

Floating touch technology

Besides this extensive list of features, the sola also sports the Japanese company’s new floating touch technology that enables users to navigate a website by hovering their finger just above the smartphone’s display. This motion allows their finger to act like a moving cursor (check out the video posted below). Sony’s new touch technology makes its debut on the Xperia sola and the company stated that its floating touch feature will evolve to include more user functionality in the near future via software updates as well as engagement with developers.

Supports NFC out of the box

The Xperia sola is NFC-enabled and comes with two NFC Xperia SmartTags in the retail box. These SmartTags can be tapped with the phone, which will then automatically perform certain functions on the device. The one SmartTag is used to turn on Wi-Fi and launch Google news and weather apps (when walking into your home for example), whilst the other one can be employed to turn on the alarm and switch the smartphone to silent mode (when going to bed). However, users will be able to personalise both SmartTags with up to ten commands. Sony’s Xperia sola also supports NFC pairing, enabling users to pair their smartphone with NFC-capable accessories or other NFC-enabled smartphones with a simple tap.

Sony’s Xperia sola will be available to consumers globally in either black, white and red during Q2 of this year. No exact local release info is available yet.
 
 
In related news, Sony also recently unveiled the latest additions to its Xperia NXT series of smartphones, namely the Xperia U and the Xperia P.

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