At the Mobile World Congress 2008 in Barcelona, Microsoft announced that Sony Ericsson would deliver a new Windows Mobile phone, the Xperia X1, in the second half of 2008, and billed as "the first phone to realise the vision of Xperia, a new Sony Ericsson sub-brand that reflects a premium experience of energised communication. which blends mobile Web communication and multimedia entertainment, to meet consumer demand for a premium mobile experience for work and play."
"Xperia is our promise to think foremost about user experience and to deliver on our goal of providing a true premium experience - anytime, anywhere, anything, with anyone," said Rikko Sakaguchi, head of Portfolio and Proposition at Sony Ericsson. "By working with Microsoft on the Xperia X1, we have been able to couple our excellence in creating compelling consumer propositions with the productivity capabilities of Windows Mobile to deliver a seamless blend of mobile Web communication and multimedia entertainment within a distinctive design."
The Xperia X1 will have a "unique" arc slider with wide-pitch Qwerty keyboard, 7.5cm wide VGA display, HSDPA/HSUPA and WiFi support and Xperia panels "to navigate Web, multimedia and other applications with the tip of a finger."
Also, its announcement comes as Ericsson unveils plans for a new handset platform for introduction in 2009 that it says will enable device manufacturers to produce devices with much greater power and functionality than those available today.
Ericsson announced, also in Barcelona, that it will launch, in early 2009, a new platform for mass-market mobile devices that it said would "enable the creation of low cost multifunction products more akin to mobile computers than mobile phones."
The U500 mobile platform is claimed to be able to support high quality camcorder, 12Mpix camera, WVGA displays, advanced 3D gaming and 3D user interface, CD quality audio performance and high resolution video for a true mobile TV experience.
It uses three ARM11 CPUs and hardware accelerators, with "state-of-the-art platform architecture through the integration of the digital baseband and an advanced multimedia companion chip into a single-die processor." The result, says Ericsson "is a powerful multimedia platform that is smaller and more cost efficient than what is currently available." Graphics capabilities are provided through an ARM Mali200 GPU, a programmable, OpenGL ES 2.0 graphics processor claimed to produce fast, high quality graphics with the low power consumption required for a handheld device.