Sony Ericsson launches Xperia Play, we go hands on
Blame it on the typhoon for the delay of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play’s media launch but we finally got to try one out yesterday at the official launching. The SE Xperia Play, also known as PlayStation Phone, is the answer for those wanting true handheld gaming from their phones. Touchscreen and gamepad combine to give you the best gaming experience on whatever type of game you play.
It is powered by the same 1GHz processor as that of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc and the 4-inch display won’t let your gaming feel stifled. Even though it doesn’t have the Mobile Bravia Engine display, the 480 x 854 resolution still makes the games that you play on it look sharp. Internal storage is limited to 400MB so games should definitely be installed on the included 8GB microSD card.
Enough about the phone, let’s talk about how it fares with gaming. First of all, the Xperia Play doesn’t look sleek at all, it has a curved back with a glossy finish to harvest all the fingerprints it comes in contact with. The bulk is needed when gaming though so it won’t feel fragile to play with and have the right amount of contour for a gaming grip.
The slide-down gamepad doesn’t feel flimsy and has a satisfying lock so you won’t have to worry sliding it back accidentally while playing. Buttons are a bit flat and don’t have the same depth as that of a PSP but you’ll get used to it quickly. There’s also the dedicated left and right touch circles that functions the same as the PSP’s analog stick. The left and right shoulder buttons have a slight indention and feels just right when pressed.
Overall, the Xperia PLAY is the ultimate gaming mobile phone that is available to us. Virtual gamepads on touchscreens just don’t fly with a lot of people so a physical one is the answer if you don’t want to get stuck playing with touch-based games. I tried it on one of the pre-installed games, Bruce Lee, and the experience was just like playing any handheld game. No problem with graphics and performance. No stuttering at while playing. I haven’t check though if you can disable phone notifications while you’re playing. Something to test when we get a review unit.
Now the problem I see with this phone is the battery life and the number of Xperia PLAY-worthy titles available. If you’re going to use this phone a lot for gaming, you might want to bring a charger with you and plug it on every chance that you get.
As for games, each purchase comes with six pre-installed games: Bruce Lee, Crash Bandicoot, FIFA 2010, Madden NFL 11, Star Battalion, and The Sims 3. There are still a lot of quality titles available in the Android Market as well as from other game publishers like Gameloft, EA and Sony. Most are not free but they should only cost you around Php130 each on average. Not unusual for Sony is their partnership with Square Enix who will be bringing Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light exclusive to Android on Xperia Play. Now where’s Final Fantasy for the Xperia Play?
The Sony Ericsson Xperia Play should be available in the market with an SRP of Php19,990 but you can get them at a lower price when you hit the stores. Aside from the above-mentioned 8GB microSD, you will also be getting a stereo portable handsfree, screen shield, car charger, and leather pouch as well as a one-year warranty.
Thanks to DaddyJoey for the photos.
|Sony Ericsson Xperia Play Specs:|
|1GHz Scorpion processor, Adreno 205 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon|
|Android OS, v2.3.3 Gingerbread (2.3.4 coming real soon)|
|4-inch screen (480 x 854 pixels), 16 million colors|
|PlayStation certified game controller|
|5 MP, 2592х1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash|
|720p HD video recording|
|VGA front camera|
|400 MB internal storage, 512 MB RAM, 8GB microSD included|
|Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot|
|Li-Ion 1500 mAh battery|