Sony Xperia TL

AT&T to launch Sony Xperia TL 'soon'

AT&T will soon launch Sony's Xperia TL smartphone, which features Near Field Communication (NFC) but not LTE wireless. Pricing was not announced.

Sony announced the Xperia T series of smartphones in late August at the IFA show in Berlin, along with Xperia V and Xperia T smartphones and a new Xperia Tablet S. The devices were touted as one way in which Sony is "accelerating its turnaround" in mobile technology.

While not LTE ready, the Xperia TL version -- an exclusive to AT&T -- will run over faster HSPA networks, which AT&T has widely deployed in the U.S. Apparently in error, a news release from AT&T described the Xperia TL as a "4G LTE smartphone." A spokeswoman later confirmed that the device does not include an LTE chip, as it is a variation of the non-LTE Xperia T announced in August.

AT&T has been heavily promoting its LTE capabilities, along with HSPA (which AT&T calls 4G). AT&T carries the iPhone 5, the first iPhone to offer LTE wireless access. In all, AT&T reaches more than 70 cities with LTE, and is testing the service in other markets. It expects to offer LTE in 100 U.S. cities by the end of 2012.

The Xperia TL's main attraction is expected to be a 4.55-in HD display (1080 x 720 pixels) and a very high quality primary camera rated at 13 megapixels. With NFC, users will be able to transfer data and images with a touch to other NFC-ready devices.

The device uses a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and runs Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) which will be upgradeable to Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) after launch.

Xperia TL will launch "soon," a spokeswoman said. It is the featured phone in the upcoming James Bond movie, Skyfall, which opens Nov. 9.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

See more by Matt Hamblen on Computerworld.com.

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