It's no secret that Sony Ericsson is going through some tough times. They're hemorrhaging money at a fierce pace, and the once-mighty cell phone giant has now taken a backseat to Apple, Nokia, and BlackBerry. If Ericsson wants to survive this next phase of mobile phone evolution, they're going to have to turn things around fast. Enter the Xperia X1A, Sony Ericsson's new smartphone, and best hope for the future.
The Xperia X1a was originally scheduled for release last winter, but a variety of issues lead to it being pushed back several months. Its current full roll-out is set for June 30, 2009. If you just can't wait that long, however, Rogers has approved a limited release for June 9th. This preliminary release will only include stores known to cater to a high data plan using population.
The Xperia X1a is definitely a gorgeous looking smartphone. It's got a big touch screen, a sliding QWERTY keyboard, and a neat curved design which should make it more comfortable for lengthy texting or browsing. In terms of cost, the X1a undercuts the iPhone just a little bit. With a 3 year plan, you're looking to shell out around $250. The phone itself will cost between $650 and $750.
Will the new Xperia pull Sony Ericsson out of its slump? I doubt it. The Xperia is a high end smartphone, but it doesn't have the buzz or the interest behind it to knock the iPhone or the Pre out of the running. BlackBerry has the corporate market nailed down tight, and I just don't see the Xperia taking off in the private market.