Sony Ericsson has announced that it is to join the Open Handset Alliance and has confirmed that the company plans to make an Android based mobile phone.

In addition, it's been announced that, among others, Asus, Garmin, Toshiba and Vodafone have also all signed up to the group in a pre-Christmas rush.

"Sony Ericsson is excited to announce its membership of the Open Handset Alliance and confirm its intention to develop a handset based on the Android platform", said Rikko Sakaguchi, CVP and head of creation and development at Sony Ericsson.

"We believe Sony Ericsson can bring a wealth of experience in making consumer focused multimedia handsets with new user experience to the Alliance drawing on the successes of the Walkman and Cyber-shot sub-brands".

"Sony Ericsson is a strong supporter of open operating systems and we believe the Open Handset Alliance offers an exciting opportunity for a new and unique user experience only Sony Ericsson can deliver".

Sony Ericsson currently offers phones based on the Symbian and Windows Mobile platforms and had previously told Pocket-lint (back in November 2007) it had turned down Google's initial invite to join the OHA in order to concentrate on its own development plans.

Sony Ericsson joins HTC, Motorola, Samsung and LG as other manufacturer members of the group, with HTC so far the only major mobile maker to bring an Android-based phone to market.

A whole rash of new OHA members has been announced with the full list as follows: AKM Semiconductor Inc., ARM, ASUSTek Computer Inc., Atheros Communications, Borqs, Ericsson, Garmin International Inc., Huawei Technologies, Omron Software Co. Ltd, Softbank Mobile Corporation, Sony Ericsson, Teleca AB, Toshiba Corporation and Vodafone.

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