Look, we're not in the audiophile business. We don't cover music products that don't feature Android in some way, shape, or form. And running bleeding-edge software is not a prerequisite for quality sound. But seriously, Sony, if you're going to charge twelve hundred dollars for a device that runs Android, could you not load it with an OS build that's over two years old? Alas, such is the case with the Walkman NW-ZX2 announced at CES.
The NW-ZX2 is not a phone. It's more of a competitor to the iPod Touch, a device focused almost entirely on portable music that runs Android more as a means to an end than anything else.
Sony, as part of a trio of new phones, today announced the Xperia V at IFA. The Xperia V carries specs similar to the newly-announced Xperia T, but has a unique twist: the device is water and dust resistant, with the ability to withstand full submersion as deep as a meter for an estimated thirty minutes.
Those who enjoy promotional videos may also be interested in seeing Sony's "Xperia – Designing out Smartphones" video, which takes a look at just how this new lineup of devices came to be.
Besides water resistance, the Xperia V carries some impressive-sounding specs, from a 13MP camera to a 4.3" HD Reality Display powered by Sony's Mobile BRAVIA Engine.
Update: Sony has announced pricing and availability. The F800 will be available starting in August (next month), and the 16GB version will start at $269.99, with 32GB costing $299.99. That's some seriously premium pricing, so let's hope these devices provide a real premium experience to go along with it.
Refusing the let the Walkman die, Sony just announced the newest iteration of the series: the F800. The newest member of the Walkman family runs Android 4.0, has a 3.5" multi-touch display, a Tegra 2 dual-core processor (why?), Bluetooth, S-Master MX digital amplifier, Clear Audio technology, and xLoud speaker system. It will also have access to the Play Store.
Sony may have disappointed by backing out of bringing Ice Cream Sandwich to its PlayStation-certified Xperia Play, but there are still several other Xperia devices out there due an upgrade to Android 4.0. Having recently dealt with the Xperia Arc and Neo, next up is the pint-sized pocket slider, the Xperia Mini Pro. As you might expect, this will include Sony's usual UI customizations, but considering the Xperia Mini Pro's rather unique form factor such additions may be welcome in this case. With many of its QWERTY brethren such as the Droid 4 or Captivate Glide still awaiting Ice Cream Sandwich updates, this makes the Xperia Mini Pro a rare device indeed.
Sony is a company going through major changes - it recently announced plans to lay off 10,000 plus of its workers (some of those through buyouts), has instated a new CEO, and just had one of its worst fiscal years ever. It also recently ended its Android smartphone partnership with Ericsson, and plans to now produce handsets under its own name. It's a difficult and uncertain time for Sony, and the Walkman Z, unfortunately, seems to be an excellent microcosm of the company's larger problems.
There comes an end to the life of every great consumer electronic. The portable CD player.
The "Walkman" brand name, originally created by Sony over 30 years ago, lives on in Sony Ericsson's newest Android device, the "Live with Walkman". This diminutive smartphone, announced in a press release earlier today, will be a music playing device first and foremost with a dedicated music discovery button and "deep Facebook integration," which means it will most likely carry something similar to (or exactly like) Sony's "Facebook inside Xperia" interface.
The device will run on Android 2.3 Gingerbread and will have the following mediocre specifications:
3.2-inch capacitive touch-screen display (480 x 320 pixels)
5MP rear camera with 8x digital zoom, auto focus, and LED flash
Front facing VGA camera
720p video recording
320MB internal storage (Editor's Note: Yes, we think this is as absurd as you do.
Sony Ericsson Indonesia has quietly announced to the world that they will be putting out the first Android-based Walkman device, the W8. This is by no means a power house, though, with a 600MHz processor, 168MB of RAM, a 3.2 megapixel camera, and a 3" 320x480 screen; clearly, this phone is aimed at the budget market.
This device will run Android 2.1 and the same version of Timescape as the X10 mini, with some tweaks to the Mediascape music interface to give users the Walkman experience. To make sure you enjoy blasting some tunes on the W8, Sony is going to sweeten the deal for anyone picking up this phone with a set of premium earbuds.