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(Pocket-lint) - Sony has announced the Sony Xperia P and the Sony Xperia U at a packed press event at Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona. The handsets were previously rumoured, the Xperia U was known as the Kumquat.

The two handsets follow the design of the Sony Xperia S, launched at CES2012 in Las Vegas, with a transparent bar being the most distinctive design feature of the family of handsets.

The Sony Xperia P will offer a 4-inch display incorporating Sony's new WhiteMagic display technology. This claims to deliver the brightest display ideal for use in sunny conditions. Technically speaking, WhiteMagic adds an extra white sub-pixel, which is the secret to its success.

The display itself offers a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels.

Sitting under the skin of the Xperia P is a 1GHz STE U8500 dual-core processor. Sony haven't said how much RAM it offers. In terms of memory you have 16GB built in. The Sony Xperia P weighs 120g and measures 122 x 59.5 x 10.5mm.

It features an 8-megapixel autofocus camera, based on the Exmor R sensor, supported by an LED flash. It will offer you 3D panoramic snaps and 1080p video capture. The battery looks a little small, however, with 1305mAh listed.

The new handset will launch on Android 2.3, with an upgrade to Android 4.0 promised for Q2 2012.

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You can find our Sony Xperia P hands-on preview here.

sony xperia u and sony xperia p get official launch image 2

The Sony Xperia U is a smaller handset, with a 3.5-inch display, but still sticking to the design of the S and P. The display gives you a resolution of 854 x 480 pixels, so although it is smaller, it still looks pretty sharp.

The selling point of this handset is customisation, as you'll be able to switch the covers to change the colours to suit your style. You'll get the option of two base colours and then a choice of caps in the box.

Again it offers a 1GHz STE U8500 processor, but the 512MB RAM sounds a little on the light side.

It takes a step down from the other handsets in the family by offering a 5-megapixel sensor on the camera, but still offers 3D Sweep Panorama, autofocus and all the rest, including 1080p video capture.

The Xperia U measures 112 x 54 x 12mm and weighs 110g. The battery is listed as 1320mAh, which again sounds a little on the light side.

It also launches on Android 2.3 with the promise of Ice Cream Sandwich in Q2 2012. 

In the UK, Orange has stated that it will have an exclusive on the white version of the Xperia U; T-Mobile and Three have confirmed they'll also carry the handset.

You can see our Sony Xperia U preview here.

Writing by Chris Hall. Originally published on 16 April 2013.