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Unknown Touch-based Sony Ericsson Handsets Spotted in the Wild

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GLOBAL- Swedish-Japanese joint venture Sony Ericsson, which is struggling to keep its foothold in the smartphone segment, is aiming to make amends for its past mistakes with its latest Android-based smartphones.

Two of such handsets have been spotted and unconfirmed reports hint at at least one being an Android device and the other running on a new Sony Ericsson Touch UI-based proprietary OS.

The manufacturer’s Xperia series has now migrated from Windows Mobile to Android and its first Android device Xperia X10 did open to some rave reviews among the handset critics. However, the price barrier and the bigger form factor pushed the manufacturer to follow the lines of Nokia N97 and HTC HD2, and released a smaller Xperia 10 mini.

Given the competition from HTC in this segment, the Xperia X10 failed to make an impact in the market. Further, the Sony Ericsson tendency of holding back the devices after an initial announcement hurt the manufacturer as competition caught up with similar offerings at an earlier date. The manufacturer is now expected to cash in on in the relative anonymity of the new handsets.

margin: 5px 10px;The Android based handset is seen with a slider landscape QWERTY keyboard and may be the next update to the Xperia X10, which at present lacks a physical keyboard. The device is expected to be powered by Google Android 2.1 or upwards, interlaced with Sony Ericsson’s customized UI with Timescape and Mediascape, which seamlessly integrate multimedia content with several social networking services.

The second leaked device is widely considered to be the first touch-based device in the manufacturer’s successful Walkman series. GSMArena reports that the handset, which is tentatively known as W150, will be an entry-level device equipped with dual-band GSM connectivity, a 2.6″ QVGA touchscreen and 2 megapixel camera. High end features such as  Wi-Fi and even 3G seemed to have been sacrificed in this entry-level touchscreen Walkman handset from the manufacturer.

With Sony Ericsson having a history of delayed launches, it will be interesting to see if the manufacturer rewrites its history books with a timely launch, to gain inroads into the erstwhile elusive smartphone and entry-level segments.

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By , Chief International Correspondent on Jun 13th, 2010 GMT +2

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