Sony introduces the Xperia E1, adapts the company's modern design to the affordable market

Now that it has taken care of the high-end segment with the Xperia Z1 and Z1 Compact, Sony has started moving downwards in order to to refresh the more affordable part of its line-up. So, besides the just-announced T2 Ultra mid-range phablet, Sony is also introducing the Xperia E1 - a budget smartphone that will aim to establish itself as a leader in its class.

The biggest and probably best thing about the Sony Xperia E1 is that it doesn't seem to be making a compromise with its design. As it can be seen from the image, the E1 looks just like the Z1 Compact (which is to say that it looks great), and the manufacturer insists that its new budget phone is going to offer a solid feel. There are no details on the actual materials that have been used in the E1's construction, so we can't know for sure if it sticks to the same high-quality glass-plus-metal build, but we'll hopefully find soon enough.

Checking out the display specs, we quickly find the first (and probably biggest) compromise that Sony has made. The Xperia E1 features a relatively small, 4" screen, with a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels (WVGA). This works up to a pixel density of 233 ppi (pixels-per-inch), which isn't particularly bad, but things won't appear super-fine either.

The chipset inside the Xperia E1's presumably premium body is of unknown make and model (at least for now), but Sony clarifies that the dual-core CPU is going to tick at a core-clock of 1.2 GHz. Additionally, that's going to be complemented by 512 MB RAM (no word yet on whether the E1 is to launch with Android 4.4 KitKat), as well as 4 GB of internal storage. We still don't know if that's going to be expandable with a microSD card.

The Sony Xperia E1 will also employ a number of other features to try to round itself up as an appealing affordable package. For example, Sony touts its 100 dB loudspeaker as being... well, quite loud; and for those who'd love to get some dual-SIM action, there's going to be such a variant as well. Finally, the Xperia E1 will come in three color options: white, black and purple. Sadly, the company hasn't announced a release date at this point, but we guess it won't be long before we can find it on the international market (no word on US release). Sony isn't willing to share pricing information at this point as well, but it does reveal that it has had Strategy Analytics conduct a research, where they have compared the Xperia E1 to the Top 100 smartphones of 2013 that have had a price-tag of up to $240 (EUR 175), so we guess that could be seen as an indication of how the E1 might end up being priced.

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source: Sony

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