Play.com really is looking to take Amazon's crown as king breaker of products release dates...
Following up its HTC Touch Pro coup the popular online retailer has now revealed when we'll be able to get our eager mitts on a sim free Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1 (drum roll please)... 30 October.
Ever better for those whose minds are made up, the chunky slider (110 x 53 x 16.7mm, 145g) can be pre-ordered now by UK customers and it will be delivered free on launch day. Play also gives away virtually every spec possible about SE's biggest assault on the smartphone market so far.
For example, we all know about its HSDPA, WiFi, aGPS and full Qwerty keyboard but on top of this we can now see Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP and voice dialling (Steve Jobs take note) are in there while internal memory is a little disappointing at just 400MB - even though there's a microSD slot (yes, microSD!) for expansion.
Now I've actually had some time with the XPERIA and without bursting anyone's bubble let's just say I hope it wasn't a retail version because much like the HTC Touch Diamond it comes equipped to the hilt, but suffers from the same laggy (if heavily customised) Windows Mobile 6.1 backbone. Personally I'd advise you wait for our review to see if this is ironed out before parting with a whopping £599.99.
In related news Sony Ericsson has also gotten around to announcing a spiritual successor to its venerable T610. The 'T700' (Sony actually has a Cybershot using the same code) is a skinny (104 x 48 x 10mm), light (78g) candybar with 3.2MP camera, HSDPA connectivity, a 2in QVGA screen, Bluetooth and support for Exchange email.
There's a miniscule 25MB of memory aboard but this is augmented by an M2 expansion slot while battery life is a cracking 9.5 hours of GSM talk time, 4.5 hours over 3G and up to 15 days when on standby. Expect the T700 to cost zip on any half decent contract and though no release date was mentioned I'd be amazed if it arrives later than mid Q4.
It's certainly not out the wars yet but at least Sony Ericsson is back fighting again...
(Xperia spot credit goes to reader Gavin whose eyes show eagles where their prey is)