Sony Xperia Sola “floating touch” phone

Hovering your finger over the screen acts as a cursor for web browsing
Adam Smith

March 13, 2012
Sony Xperia Sola

Since divorcing Ericsson, it would seem Sony is keen to push out a whole load of new phones.

And alongside the likes of the Xperia S, P and U models, another new handset has just been announced, the Xperia Sola (previously known as the Pepper).

The Sola comes with a core spec of a 3.7 inch “reality” display with an 854×480 resolution, a 1GHz dual-core processor, 8GB of storage, along with a 5 megapixel, 720p capable camera.

Disappointingly, though, it only has Android Gingerbread on board, though an Ice Cream Sandwich update will be coming this summer, Sony assures us.

Sony is making a big thing about the phone’s NFC support, and also a new feature called “floating touch”.

Basically, this allows the user to hover their finger over the screen to produce and move a cursor around. What use is that?

When surfing the web, it allows you to hover and move that cursor to ensure you’re highlighting the small web link you want, before touching the screen to confirm the selection (you still have to touch to select). As opposed to just touching the screen and hoping you hit the correct small link…

A nifty if not revolutionary idea, although Sony is pushing it as a sense of “magic”.

Calum MacDougall, Head of Xperia Marketing for Sony Mobile, commented: “Xperia sola comes with the power of Sony and a sense of magic with floating touch, giving consumers a fun new way to browse the web and latest technology to show off.”

“With Xperia SmartTags out of the box and access to the latest content through Sony Entertainment Network, Xperia sola is perfect for consumers looking for ease of use and the best in entertainment in a smart and innovative smartphone.”

The NFC SmartTags is the other feature being pushed, and two come bundled with the phone.

These contain pre-configured profiles – one to turn on wi-fi and launch Google news and weather apps, the other designed for the bedroom to turn on the alarm and switch to silent mode. Again, a neat little extra.

The price is yet to be confirmed, but if pitched as expected at a reasonable budget level, this could be a tempter for gadget lovers with its extra tricks on board.






 

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