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Sony Ericsson Philippines introduced today, March 29, 2011 both the Xperia arc and the Xperia neo with the former being billed as the company's flagship smartphone. Running on the latest Android OS, Gingerbread. , the Xperia arc and the Xperia neo promise to be faster, smoother, and more responsive.

The system actively manages open applications, which means that performance and battery life are maximized. And, with over 150,000 free apps to download from the Android Market, the Xperia arc should be a welcome alternative to Apple's iPhone.

Though I love my iPhone4--and I haven't had any complaints so far with it--I'm open to what Android has to offer. And while there are other Android-based mobile brands that could probably bite a chunk out of iOS' control of the smartphone market, you can never really go wrong with Sony Ericsson. 

With the Xperia arc, I was really impressed first and foremost with the graphics. When I arrived at the launch venue, I immediately noticed some of the guests crowding around a television monitor and as I moved closer, I saw for the first time the Xperia arc connected to the Sony flat-screen via HDMI.

The images displayed, in amazing quality if I may add, on the screen were from the Xperia arc and I would later find out that this is due to the Mobile BRAVIA Engine with its Reality Display LCD technology, which delivers exceptional visual brilliance and crystal clear images that enhance the overall experience.

The Xperia arc also has Exmor R mobile sensor that helps shoot stills and videos in low light conditions. This, according to Sony Ericsson Philippines Marketing Manager Patrick Larraga, is the brand's way of giving consumers full entertainment capability with the Xperia arc. 

I had the opportunity to tinker with the handset and even without help from the staff, I found the navigation quite easy. The Xperia arc felt nice on my hands and the user interface was indeed responsive. It is just 8.7mm thick at its thinnest part and while it felt solidly-built, I still couldn't help but worry about accidentally cracking it in half. 






Here are the Xperia arc's specs: 

Sony Ericsson Xperia™ arc – Key features
  • Slim, lightweight and strong, with perfect ergonomics
  • Extra wide 4.2” multi-touch Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine to ensure ultimate multimedia and viewing experiences
  • Sony Exmor R™ for mobile: for best-in-class low-light photography and video capture
  • 8.1 megapixel camera and HD video recording capability
  • Android Market™ – thousands of applications to keep you entertained
Sony Ericsson Xperia™ arc will be available globally in selected markets, including Japan, from Q1 in the colours Midnight Blue and Misty Silver.
Check out the Sony Ericsson Product Blog for more information:http://blogs.sonyericsson.com/productsSony Ericsson Xperia™ arc at a glanceCamera
  • 8.1 megapixel camera
  • Up to 2.46x smart zoom
  • Aperture f/2.4
  • Auto focus
  • Face detection
  • Flash/LED
  • Geo tagging
  • Image stabilizer
  • Noise suppression
  • Send to web
  • Smile detection
  • Sony Exmor R™ for mobile CMOS sensor
  • Touch Focus
  • Touch capture
  • Video light
  • Video recording, HD 720p
Music
  • Album art
  • Bluetooth™ stereo (A2DP)
  • Media player
  • Music tones (MP3/AAC)
  • PlayNow™ service*
  • TrackID™ music recognition application
  • * This service may not be available in every market
Web
  • Bookmarks
  • Google™ search
  • NeoReader™ barcode scanner
  • Pan & zoom
  • Web browser (WebKit)
Communication
  • Call list
  • Conference calls
  • Facebook™ application*
  • Sony Ericsson Timescape™
  • Speakerphone
  • Vibrating alert
  • * This service may not be available in every market
Messaging
  • Conversations
  • Email
  • Microsoft® Exchange ActiveSync®
  • Instant messaging
  • Picture messaging (MMS)
  • Predictive text input
  • Sound recorder
  • Text messaging (SMS)
Design
  • Auto rotate
  • Keyboards (onscreen, QWERTY)
  • Picture wallpaper
  • Reality display
  • Sony Mobile BRAVIA® Engine
  • Touchscreen
  • Wallpaper animation
Entertainment
* This service may not be available in every market
  • 3D games
  • Media browser
  • Motion gaming
  • Radio (FM)
  • Video streaming
  • Video viewing
  • YouTube™ *
Organiser
  • Android™ OS
  • Alarm clock
  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Document readers
  • Flight mode
  • Infinite button
  • Phone book
Connectivity
  • 3.5 mm audio jack
  • aGPS
  • Bluetooth™ technology
  • Google Maps™
  • HDMI
  • Modem
  • DLNA
  • USB mass storage
  • USB support
  • Wi-Fi™
  • Wisepilot™ turn-by-turn navigation *
  • * This service may not be available in every market
Google™ services*
* These services may not be available in every market
  • Android Market™ Client
  • Gmail™
  • Google Calendar™
  • Google Gallery 3D™
  • Google Latitude™
  • Google Maps™ with Street View
  • Google Media Uploader
  • Google Music Player™
  • Google Phone-top Search
  • Google Search widget
  • Google Sync™
  • Google Talk™
  • Google Voice Search
  • Set-up Wizard
  • YouTube™
Screen
  • Sony Mobile Bravia Engine
  • 16,777,216 colour TFT
  • Capacitive multi-touch
  • 4.2 inches
  • 854 x 480 pixels (FWVGA)
  • Shatter proof sheet on scratch-resistant mineral glass
Accessories
  • In-Box:
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia™ arc
  • Battery (1500mAh)
  • Stereo portable handsfree
  • Micro USB cable for charging, synchronisation and file transfer
  • User documentation
Facts
  • Size: 125 x 63 x 8.7 mm
  • Weight: 117 grams
  • Phone memory: Up to 512 MB
  • Memory card support: up to 32 GB
  • Memory card included: microSD™ 8 GB
  • Operating system: Google™ Android 2.3
  • Processor: 1 GHz Qualcomm
Availability and versions
  • Networks
  • UMTS HSPA 900, 2100
  • GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900
  • UMTS HSPA 800, 850, 1900, 2100
  • GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900
Colour
  • Midnight Blue
  • Misty Silver
According to Sony Ericsson Philippines, when the Xperia arc rolls out in April, specially marked kits will come with the AN-400 Sony Ericsson car charger and the promo will only be for a month. Both the arc and the neo will also be released with an HD game promotion where customers can choose three out of ten HD game titles to download until June 30, 2011. Choices include Asphalt 5, Tom Clancy's HAWX, Assasin's Creed, and Real Football 2011.

To give you an idea of the Xperia arc's gaming capabilities (and how good I am at Angry Birds) here's a video:






The Xperia arc has an SRP of P29,990. For more details and promos, join the Sony Ericsson PH Facebook community at www.Facebook.com/sonyericssonph

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