Sony Xperia S and Ion are first phones to drop Ericsson name

Sony Ericsson becomes just Sony this year, and the Sony Xperia S and Sony Xperia Ion are the first to bear the stripped-down name.

Sony has unveiled the first phones for a decade to drop the Sony Ericsson name. Sony Ericsson becomes just Sony this year, and the Sony Xperia S and Sony Xperia Ion are the first to bear the stripped-down name.

Japanese giant Sony spent £918m buying out Swedish telecoms company Ericsson, and the results are already appearing. Sony says the Xperia S is the first smart phone in the Xperia NXT series of "next-generation smart phones" -- which is confusingly close to NEX, Sony's own range of lens-swapping cameras.

The Xperia S and Ion were unveiled on Monday in Las Vegas at international gadget trade show CES, the Consumer Electronics Show. CNET has boots on the ground, searching out the highlights of the show, and we've already got our hands on the Xperia S -- click here for our preview.

The Xperia Ion is a 4G model, so isn't coming across the pond. The Xperia S will, however. 

The Xperia S is the phone rumoured to be called the Sony Ericsson Arc HD, also known as the Nozomi. It boasts an impressive 4.3-inch, 720x1,280-pixel touchscreen, 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm processor and 32GB of storage. It also wins points for a quirky transparent strip at the bottom, allowing you to see through the phone.

The camera is a whopping 12-megapixel Sony Exmor R snapper that shoots 1080p high-definition video. A second camera for video calling films 720p HD moving pictures.

The Xperia S arrives in March, and Three and O2 are the first networks to announce they'll offer the phone. Powered by Android Gingerbread at launch, it'll upgrade to the latest version of Android -- Ice Cream Sandwich -- in the second half of the year, which is a tad disappointing.

Is the name change the start of a new chapter for Sony smart phones? Drop a name in the comments or on our Facebook page. For more on the techpocalypse that is CES, check out ces.cnet.com.

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