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Sony is continuing to expand its Xperia range, with high end handsets like the Xperia S soon to be joined by the more budget-friendly entry known as the ST21i, according to leaked information reported by TechBlog. The ST21i is the development name given to this upcoming mid-range Android 4.0 handset, which has also appeared in a small number of surprisingly detailed images in recent days.
In terms of hardware components the ST21i is hardly going to be worth writing home about, but at the more affordable end of the market it is all about price and value for money rather than raw performance and power. You get an 800Mhz single core processor paired with 500MB of RAM, which is roughly the bare minimum you would expect to see on any phone running the very latest version of Android.
This will be pumped out through a 3.2 inch touchscreen display with a native resolution of 640×480, which should be adequate enough to bring the software to life without compromising it in terms of quality or clarity. Perhaps most noteworthy is the fact that Sony`s other current generation Android smartphones are stuck with Android 2.3 until an update is made available. Meanwhile the ST21i will reportedly ship with 4.0 preinstalled, which will be something of a coup for buyers who want to enjoy the very cutting edge of Google`s mobile operating system experience.
Another phone to appear in leaked images within the last seven days is an as yet unannounced handset purported to be in development at Research in Motion (RIM), the ailing BlackBerry manufacturer. CrackBerry has published images which appear to show a large, slender touchscreen handset that bears the distinctive BlackBerry logo on the rear and appears to draw inspiration from RIM`s Playbook tablet when it comes to design. This smartphone could well be the BlackBerry London, a handset that has been doing the rounds on the rumour mill for a few months.
RIM has been struggling to keep up with the competition in terms of sales and handset functionality, lumbered with software which has not entirely lent itself to dominating the modern market. However, the upcoming London is likely to be the first BlackBerry which sports the new BB 10 operating system, a software platform which is itself based on the QNX system that powers the aforementioned Playbook tablet.
BB 10 will help to give RIM the edge again, because it is built from the ground up for touchscreen interactivity, rather than being an older platform which has had to be updated to accommodate the increasing focus on tactile displays.
The Playbook received positive reviews for the multitasking capabilities and intuitiveness of its QNX operating system when it launched in 2011, but sadly the lack of app support and the dominance of the iPad meant that it never really found the market it deserved.
Hopefully the new BlackBerry will be offered on some of the best mobile phone deals to help consumers turn back to RIM once more.