When touchscreen phones first became mainstream, countless people talked about how "impractical" a touch-only device was. Since then, touch devices have become the norm in the smartphone realm, with basically every modern high-end phone packing at least some sort of touch input.

Sony is taking the touch revolution to a whole new level with the Xperia sola, though, by bringing a new feature to the table called "floating touch" that allows the user to simply hover their finger over items in the browser and highlight them, much like using a mouse.

Not only does the sola incorporate this new floating touch technology, but it's also NFC enabled and comes packaged with two Sony SmartTags which can be customized to handle up to ten different commands each.

wm_1_Xperiasola_black_front wm_4_Xperiasola_black_back wm_5_Xperiasola_black_group

Under its hood, the sola isn't quite packing the oomph that you may be expecting:

  • 3.7-inch "Reality Display" with mobile BRAVIA engine and scratch resistant glass
  • 1GHz dual-core processor
  • 512MB RAM
  • 8GB internal storage, microSD card slot
  • 5MP rear shooter
  • Android 2.3 (Android 4.0 upgrade coming in "Summer 2012")

The sola should be available globally in the second quarter of this year and will come in red, black, and white.


Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • Vicky

    Tiny screen.
    Massively thick.
    Very old 2010 OS version.
    You can (pointlessly) highlight items.... for no apparent reason.

    No thanks.

  • http://www.destinobles.ch thx84

    Really like this new phone. Two issues though: the bezel under the screen and the provided battery.
    I hope you can get a full battery life day out of it...

    • Dandmcd

      Battery worries me too, I like the design of the phone, but battery might to small. I am happy to see good options for a smaller screen size, but hope it lasts for a day on one charge.

  • http://about.me/shawns52 ShawnS

    It reminds me of what I loved about my old Blackberry Storm: the two-step process of touching the screen to select an item and then clicking the screen in to confirm. It made things a thousand times less finicky than they still are for me on Android or iOS. I really miss that physical confirmation of my choice and this could bring a little of that feeling back.

    • John

      You are honestly the first person I have ever heard use the words loved and Blackberry Storm in the same sentence.

    • drksilenc

      That WAS THE STUPIDEST feature of ANY phone that ever existed...

  • Bala

    Whats new in this??? i can have the same touch in my galaxy s2 by increasing the touch threshold.

  • spydie

    I fail to see the advantage. Same motion as just touching the link on any other phone, and just touching the link you want as opposed to first selecting it, then touching seems like more work.

    • Dan

      If you have ever used a wacom tablet before, you will realize how it is different than touching the screen. If it is the same idea, you hover over to use like a mouse moving over a desktop, without a click enabled. Then you touch to use like a click enabled click. Sorta hard to describe, but it really is more like a mouse, with the fact that you aren't "clicking" all the time.

  • Sergio Fernando Cebrián Aguirre

    my droid 3 does that.
    really im not crazy.
    sometimes it registers an input at 1/8 in
    without actually touching :P

    stupid capacitive fingers :P

  • Mark Arpon

    Would anyone care to explain how this magical no-touch touch works?

    • Dan

      It most likely is inductance, similar to the Wacom tablet technology, but detects the finger above it wit radio waves or inductance in finger or capacitance in finger. all of these are possible choices.

    • drksilenc

      it uses the static of your finger.

  • paximos

    Anyone knows what the music is?
    SoundHound does not recognize it!!!
    I don't know about this phone, but my new Xperia S was just returned yesterday..Pretty bad performance.

    • Kyle

      It's one of the Apple Loops that come with all Macs. So basically that means this was done in iMovie

  • ssj4Gogeta

    Why not just touch the link instead of first hovering over other links and then touching it?

  • Justin W

    I'm so confused as to why all the comments are about this being a phone... This is an app, not a phone.

    • serotheo

      Look at the time marker.

      • Justin W

        Now I'm even more confused. When I looked at this yesterday, it was an app called Floating Touch (which was downloadable via the play store).

  • Mr. Mark

    tell me why there are idiots here commenting on the phone...

  • OmniWrench

    Wow.. that's quite a permission list...

  • Dave Courtemanche

    That looping music in the video was brutal

  • WhyWai

    it's more like the floating shortcut thing on iOS than facebook floating chat. not a big fan since we can already place those shortcuts in notification drawer.