And six months after officially unveiling the Sony Xperia Ion to the world, AT&T has finally come clean with details of its availability. The LTE-enabled handset will be available June 24th at a price of $99 on a new two-year contract, a solid price considering what you get. While the Ion won’t give the HTC One X or Samsung Galaxy S III a run for most powerful smartphone, it does sport a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor (albeit of the S3 variety), 12MP camera, and a Bravia-enhanced 4.6-inch 720p HD Reality display.
Unlike recent flagship releases from competitors, the Xperia Ion will ship with an older version of Android, Gingerbread 2.3.7. An Ice Cream Sandwich update is planned, and we expect Sony to deliver on the goods soon enough given their recent handling of Android 4.0 updates for other Xperia devices. For a few more details check out the press release below. For a refresher on the Ion, hit up our hands-on from CES back in January.
EXPERIENCE HD ENTERTAINMENT EVERYWHERE WITH XPERIA™ ION FROM SONY, AVAILABLE EXCLUSIVELY AT AT&T JUNE 24
Sony’s First 4G LTE Smartphone Ideal for Creating and Showcasing Premium
Entertainment with Video, Photo, Gaming and Music
DALLAS, June 14, 2012 – Entertainment fans longing for a better mobile HD experience will soon have an all-new 4G LTE Android smartphone to covet as the Xperia ion from Sony arrives exclusively in all AT&T* channels June 24. The new Xperia ion builds on Sony’s reputation as an innovator and leader in imaging and entertainment and costs just $99.99 with a two-year agreement.
AT&T customers have access to the nation’s largest 4G network, covering more than 260 million people. As 4G LTE expands, AT&T customers are able to enjoy a widespread, ultra-fast and consistent 4G experience on their compatible device as they move in and out of LTE areas. AT&T has two 4G networks that work together for customers, LTE and HSPA+ with enhanced backhaul. With other carriers, when you travel outside of their LTE coverage area, you’re on a much slower 3G network.
Sony’s first 4G LTE smartphone comes with a 4.6-inch HD Reality display (1280 x 720), as well as the ability to view HD content on the big screen via HDMI. The HDMI connection also opens the Xperia ion’s TV launcher, a customizable home screen carousel of application shortcuts. You can navigate the TV launcher and the rest of the Xperia ion’s menus at your convenience using your TV’s remote control.***
Shutterbugs will love the Xperia ion’s 12-megapixel Fast Capture camera and quick launch feature to seize life’s unexpected moments. With its dedicated camera button, the Xperia ion swiftly goes from standby to first camera shot in just 1.5 seconds and then from shot-to-shot in less than a second, ensuring you don’t miss a moment. Xperia ion boasts all-around HD video recording, so whether capturing memories or video chatting, you can be sure to have high-quality video on the go using either your rear or front-facing cameras.
Xperia ion is complemented by SmartTags****, which let you do things you normally do on your phone, but more quickly and easily, with just one tap. Using near field communication technology, SmartTags let you store device preferences for a variety of locations and situations – like opening and controlling volume on the music player if you head out for a run, turning on GPS and Bluetooth in the car or turning on your alarm and silencing your ringer at night.
Sony Entertainment on the Go
Taking your music and videos with you everywhere just got easier than ever thanks to the Sony Entertainment Network (SEN). Sony Music Unlimited puts a global catalog of more than12 million songs at your fingertips, and Sony Video Unlimited makes sure there is never a dull moment with the latest Hollywood blockbusters and TV shows from all major studios available for you to rent or buy.
For the Xperia ion, both Music Unlimited and Video Unlimited are available for download from the Google Play store. AT&T customers who buy the Xperia ion will get to try the premium service level of Music Unlimited free for thirty days. The Xperia ion is also ready for advanced gaming as it is PlayStation® Certified. The hardware is optimized to deliver an exceptional gaming experience and users will have future access to PlayStation titles as the catalog is developed. With so much entertainment to be enjoyed, the Xperia ion comes with plenty of internal memory, with the option to add up to 32GB external (microSD™) memory.
For more information, customers can visit http://www.att.com/aboutus.
4.6″ (measured diagonally) 720p HD Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine for unbeatable HD viewing
HD imaging excellence from Sony: 12MP camera with Exmor R™ for Mobile camera sensor, 1080p HD video recording, 1 MP 720p HD front-facing camera
Easy multi-screen connectivity with HDMI and DLNA®
1.5Ghz dual core processor
16GB internal memory with microSD™ expansion slot supports up to 32GB
PlayStation Certified for high quality mobile gaming
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not
by AT&T Inc.
**Data rates apply.
***Compatible with Bravia Sync enabled devices. Limited functionality supported on most HDMI enabled TV’s.
****SmartTags sold separately.
Limited 4G LTE availability in select markets. 4G speeds delivered by LTE, or HSPA+ with enhanced backhaul, where
available. Deployment ongoing. Compatible device and data plan required. LTE is a trademark of ETSI. Learn more at
Limited-time offer. Sony Xperia ion requires a new 2-yr wireless agreement with voice (min $39.99/mo) and min monthly data plan ($20/mo). Subject to Wireless Customer Agrmt. Credit approval req’d. Activ fee $36/line. Geographic, usage and other terms, conditions and restrictions apply, and may result in svc termination. Coverage and svcs not avail everywhere. Taxes and other charges apply. Data (att.com/dataplans): If usage exceeds your monthly data allowance, you will automatically be charged overage for additional data provided. Early Termination Fee (att.com/equipmentETF): After 30 days, ETF up to
$325. Restocking fee up to $35. Other Monthly Charges/line may include a Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge (up to $1.25), a gross receipts surcharge, federal and state universal svc charges, fees and charges for other gov’t assessments. These are not taxes or gov’t req’d charges. Visit a store or att.com/wireless to learn more about wireless devices and services
from AT&T. Downloadable content may be subject to additional charges.