Sony Xperia Ion pictures and hands-on

The Sony Ericsson Xperia Ion, or should that be Sony Xperia Ion, is a 4.6-inch display touting Android smartphone coming to AT&T in the US.

Launched at CES in Las Vegas, Pocket-lint was on hand at the show to have a play with the new American Sony high-end smartphone to see whether it should be on your shopping list.

Cutting to the chase, the new handset will offer a 4.6-inch display with an HD resolution of 1280 x 720, so is up there with the recently launched Galaxy Nexus, and packs a whopping 12-megapixel Exmor R camera capable of capturing Full HD video. A forward-facing camera will offer you good old 720p as well.

In the hand the phone's design is strong with the handset well built. The screen is up to the company's usual standards as found on the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc and the camera's quality, if the on-screen results are anything to go by, is stunning. Sadly we weren't able to send ourselves any pictures from the camera (with the awful lighting at the show it probably wouldn't have told us much anyway).

Internally you'll find a respectable 1.5GHz dual core processor and 16GB of internal memory. It's an LTE phone, so those on AT&T will enjoy lightening fast data speeds on the move. Loading Pocket-lint up on the browser was certainly fast, even on the strained network of the LVCC.

It's also PlayStation Certified, so you'll get access to any games that Sony push out to its expanding line-up of PlayStation happy devices and you'll get the niceties of DNLA and HDMI as well - something we got to test with the optional dock. There is also NFC on board.

Plug the phone into the dock and the dock into your TV and you'll be able to really start to enjoy those 1080p movies at 46 inches, let alone 4.6 inches.

Like the Sony Xperia S, the Xperia Ion surprisingly still runs Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread, however Sony has confirmed that it will be getting an Ice Cream Sandwich update in good time. It seems to be a trait amongst phone and tablet makers at the moment unless you are Samsung with the Galaxy Nexus.

While the UK have the Xperia S, this larger screen device will sit nicely into the AT&T portfolio being powerful enough and spec heavy enough to last certainly longer that previous Sony Ericsson handsets have managed in the past.

No word on whether a non-LTE version will be heading to the UK. We will keep you posted.