Sony Announces Xperia E Budget Android Phone

By Khurram Aziz | Dec 05, 2012 12:44 PM EST

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Sony has announced a new budget smartphone - the Xperia E, which will be its first to run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box.

The company is marketing it as an affordable handset with HD Voice, data usage monitoring and battery power management.

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"Consumers looking to take their first steps into the world of Xperia smartphones would be well advised to look at Xperia E or Xperia E dual. They are perfect for those seeking affordable access to the quality and functionality more traditionally associated with high-end Android smartphones," said Calum MacDougall, Director Xperia Marketing at Sony Mobile Communications in a press release.

The phone features a 3.5-inch HVGA display, HSPA, Wi-Fi, GPS, HD voice and noise cancellation, xLOUD and 3D surround sound. It has a 3.2MP rear camera with VGA video recording, single-core 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal memory and a MicroSD card support for added storage space. The device also features wireless DLNA connectivity, usually seen on high-end handsets, to easily share and view content like photos and videos on a TV, tablet, PC and other DLNA-enabled devices.

Sony claims that the smartphone's 1,500 mAh battery can provide talk time of up to 6.3 hours, or a stand-by time of up to 530 hours.

Sony has been making Xperia smartphones since 2008, which now account for more than half of the company's mobile phone sales.

It initially began offering phones with the early versions of Windows mobile operating system, but today all its devices run Android.

There are no indications as to the price of the new Xperia E, however, its top-end smartphone, the Xperia S, retails on Amazon for $399.

The specs of the phone are also similar to Google's budget Android phone, the Nexus 4, which starts at $299 for an 8GB model -twice the storage space of the Xperia E.

The Xperia E will be available in black, white and pink when it is launched in the first quarter of 2013. The phone will also have a dual SIM capability, which is particularly popular in countries like China where users often have subscriptions to multiple networks as they travel between different regions in the country.

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