By Max Clarke

Sony Ericsson’s new ‘gaming phone’, which went on display today at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, could prove to be a commercial hit according to Ben Trewhella, Chief Technology Officer of Mubaloo — the UK’s largest mobile application developer.

“As smartphones are converging more and more with traditional gaming devices, Sony has an ‘ace’ which they are using to their advantage by combining the Playstation legacy with the Android platform,” said Mr Trewhella.

“Most smartphone users are happy making phone calls, sending emails and interacting with apps through the touchscreen, it is the lack of responsive game controls that has been holding back a large gaming audience.”

Sony Ericsson’s Xperia Playgaming phone’ is powered by Android. On the left-hand side there is a slide-out Sony D-pad for controlling in-play direction and a set of four control buttons on the right. There are also two circular touchpads which fulfill the joystick functions for some games.

Sony Ericsson gave the Xperia a high-profile launch and will be hopping that it provides them with traction in the SmartPhone market which is dominated by HTC, Motorola, and Apple

“With the Xperia range and the vast number of high quality games available on the Playstation network, Sony Ericsson may have a hit on their hands,” said Mr Trewhella.