MWC is typically far more mobile-oriented than most other events that take place during the technology calendar. However, one product which did stand out to us during this year’s MWC was not a smartphone. Although, based on the specs, you might be forgiven for thinking that it is. Sony did launch a number of new smartphones at the event (four to be exact), however along with those phones, the company also introduced its Sony Xperia Touch. For those who follow Sony regularly, then this is not a new product per se, as the Xperia touch did debut back in early 2016 (during last year's MWC). Although back then, this was referred to as the Sony Xperia Projector and was still very much at the concept stage of development. Since then though, the product has gone through a revision process and is now confirmed as coming to market as the Sony Xperia Touch.
So what is the Xperia Touch? Well, in the shortest of terms it is a projector. Like you can do with any projector, this one will allow you to project content onto a flat surface. However, whether the Xperia Touch differentiates itself from the competition is in two distinct places. Firstly, it comes running on Android (Android Nougat, no less) and secondly, it is interactive. Which does mean that this is not only a projector, but it is also able to simulate the use of a tablet. As the name suggests, the Xperia Touch comes with the ability for the user to touch-interact with the content that is being displayed. So for instance, you can project content onto a smaller surface (like a table) and then interact with that content, in much the same way you would with a tablet. While the same functionality can be applied to the Xperia Touch in traditional projector mode, due to the extended height and width of the projection in this mode - this is unlikely to be an ideal option. Instead, this is a device that has the ability to cater to two distinct markets - those looking for a tablet-like product and those looking for a traditional projector. Of course, as this one comes running on Android, it also has the ability to make use of any and all Android apps as well - a point which further justifies its comparability to a traditional tablet.
In terms of the more standard numbers, and as mentioned, the Xperia Touch is somewhat reminiscent of an actual Xperia smartphone. As the Xperia Touch comes loaded with 3GB RAM, 32GB internal storage and a 13-megapixel main camera. As well as the option to expand the storage via microSD card, a variety of sensors, Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, USB Type-C, and Android Nougat. Then there is the more projector-like specific features, including HDMI support, a projection range of 23 to 80 inches, a brightness of 100 lumens, a contrast ratio of 4000:1, two-way stereo speakers, and more. So while the tablet market seems to be in decline (in spite of a few of them being announced at MWC 2017), Sony has actually taken the concept of a tablet and almost thrown the functionality in for free with its projector. Which not only makes this an interesting product, and one worth paying attention to, but also a deserved winner of a ‘Best of MWC 2017’ award.