Sony has three smartphones in its 2012 Xperia NXT Android smartphone line and this one is the most affordable --
Practically the smaller and less powerful version - specs-wise, at least - of its more expensive siblings, Sony Xperia U still has its own charms. Despite having a smaller display and only 512 MB of RAM, and lacking a quad-core processor as well as a Full HD video recorder, Sony's budget smartphone nonetheless features Sony's very own xLoud sound enhancement technology which aims to give users top-notch audio performance. Suffice it to say, this phone is ideal for music lovers who want to experience the benefits of having a full-fledged Android smartphone.
Sony Xperia U ships with Android 2.3 Gingerbread installed but Sony promises that the phone will get Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich software update within the second half of 2012.
Oh, and also, Sony Xperia U's 5 MegaPixel camera is capable of taking 2D and 3D sweep panaroma photos. I'm not particularly crazy about this extra feature but it's nice that Sony, being one of the true pioneers in mobile photography, is offering users this option.
Design-wise, the handset flaunts a polycarbonate unibody case and a couple of unique design accents -- a transparent band near the cap, which illuminates to match the color of photos viewed in the gallery or the album art of music tracks currently playing, and swappable bottom caps which come in Pink, Yellow, Black and White.
While - overall - I think Sony Xperia U is a strong release, I have to admit that I have reservations about the borderline meager size of its internal storage and battery pack; 4GB of non-expandable storage and 1320 mAh battery both just seem too small for a 2012 Android smartphone.
So when will this smartphone reach the Philippines and how much will it cost? No official word yet from Sony Mobile Philippines but I'm inclined to believe that the phone will land here sometime in Q2 2012 with price tag of only around Php 15,000 - 16,000.
Update as of May 1, 2012
During Sony Xperia U's official launch in the Philippines, Sony Mobile announced that the smartphone will be available in the country by around mid-May 2012 with an official suggested retail price of only Php 13,990! Not bad, right?!
Wrapping this up in true TechPinas fashion, I present the full and complete technical specifications of Sony Xperia U --
|Name||Sony Xperia U|
|Type||Slate Form Factor (Full Touchscreen)|
|Dimensions||112 x 54 x 12 mm|
|Available Colors||Black, White with swappable bottom caps in White, Black, Yellow and Pink|
|Operating System||Android 2.3 Gingerbread, eventually upgradeable to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich|
|Display||3.5 inches (~280 ppi pixel density), 480 x 854 pixels, LED-backlit LCD, capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors|
|Processor||Dual Core 1 GHz DB8500 GPU Snapdragon S2 STE U8500 chipset|
|Camera||5 MegaPixels, 2592 x 1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, VGA front camera|
|Video Capture||720p 30 frames per second|
|Audio and Video Playback||MP4/H.263/H.264/WMV/MP3/eAAC+/WMA/WAV player|
|Ports||microUSB v2.0, USB On-The-Go support, 3.5 mm audio jack|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot, DLNA, Bluetooth v2.1 with A2DP, EDR, 3G HSDPA 14.4 Mbps, HSUPA 5.76 Mbps|
|Network||2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900, 3G Network HSDPA 900 / 2100 - ST25i / HSDPA 850 / 1900 / 2100 - ST25a|
|Internal Storage||4 GB|
|Sensors||Accelerometer, Digital Compass, Proximity|
|Battery||Li-Ion 1320 mAh|
|Uptime||Stand-by of up 472 hours on 2G and up to 260 hours on 2G / Talk Time of up to 6 hours 36 minutes on 2G and up to 5 hours 36 minutes on 3G|
|Value-Added Features||3D sweep panorama image capture, xLoud Sound Enhancement, SNS integration, Google Services Suite|
|Announcement||Globally: February 2012|
|Availability||Q2 2012 |
Philippines: Mid-May 2012
|Price||TP Guesstimate: Php 15,000 - Php 16,000 |
Official SRP: Php 13,990