Sony Ericsson unveiled three new Android-powered smartphones at the Mobile World Conference 2011 in Barcelona.
The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play is designed to be a dual use smartphone gaming device. The smartphone offers a 5 megapixel camera, 4-inch screen and a 1GHz Snapdragon ARM-based CPU along with the Adreno graphics processor.
However what sets the Xperia Play appart is turning the device sideways and sliding out the game pad which offers a digital D pad and two analogue touch pads as well as two shoulder buttons and the iconic four PlayStation buttons: cyrcle, cross, square and triangle.
Like the other SE phones, the Xperia Play will offer Android Gingerbread (2.3) but Sony isn’t keeping the PlayStation gaming just to the new ‘PlayStation phone’.
The Xperia Play will be the first of several phones certified to play PlayStation games through the PlayStation Suite application, due to launch later in the year.
Some of the gaming franchises set to appear on the new service include Need For Speed, Sims 3 and FIFA 10. Guitar Hero, Assassin’s Creed and Spliter Cell are also to arrive on the new mobile gaming platform.
The other Xperia phones the firm announced include the Xperia Pro and the Xperia Neo. The Xperia Pro will offer a landscape slide out keyboard, rather than a game controller and the device has a 8.1 megapixel rear camera.
CNET described the Xperia Pro keyboard as ‘spacious and comfortable’.
The Xperia Neo represents an entry level model Xperia smartphone, with no slide out keyboard or keypad and a 3.7-inch screen. Sony Ericcson used the CES show in January to previously announce the Xperia Arc, a high end keyboardless smartphone with a large 4.2-inch display.
The three new devices and the Arc bring the total number of next-generation Xperias to four, a major push into the Android smartphone category.
The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play will be available in March.