Sony Ericsson is looking to start a bromance with the McTwist-loving, Double-Cork-landing, A-Frame-riding masses jonesing for a new Android device. The handset maker has announced a "global strategic alliance" with Billabong to launch the Xperia Active Billabong Edition smartphone in select markets. The handset will come preloaded with exclusive content, including Billabong screen savers, and bundle several Billabong-branded games and applications. As the two companies tell it, the Xperia ABE is the "ideal smartphone for extreme sports enthusiasts." Accordingly, Sony Ericsson hardware is about to start making appearances at various "major" Billabong events. Unfortunately, this next bit is really going to harsh your mello: the hardware is identical to that of the Xperia Active announced back in June, complete with a single-core 1GHz processor, Gingerbread, a 3-inch Reality display and a five-megapixel shooter. Even with its no-so-extreme spec sheet, we give SE a gnar-lay for effort.
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Sony Ericsson Drops into Extreme Action Sports with Billabong
Xperia™ active Billabong Edition now available in select markets
London, UK – February 2 , 2012 – Sony Ericsson today announced an expanded global strategic alliance with Billabong, a brand that promotes an authentic lifestyle and the true values of core boardsports (surfing, snowboarding, skateboarding and wakeboarding), which connects the Xperia smartphone brand to a new and highly influential consumer audience and extends to a retail offering for smartphone users. At the center of the partnership is the Xperia™ active Billabong Edition smartphones designed with extreme sports enthusiasts in mind.
"Billabong brings a new, enthusiastic and engaging audience who are early technology adopters and influencers in the areas of sports and technology,"said Stephan Croix, VP Head of Global Marketing Creation for Sony Ericsson. "This partnership is a perfect fit with our brand and the Xperia™ range of smartphones."
The Xperia™ active Billabong edition is an ideal smartphone for extreme sports enthusiasts who can take it along on their shreds and surfs to capture all of the excitement up close and personal. This tough, scratch-resistant smartphone is packed with technologies such as wet finger tracking and has received some of the highest marks in dustproof and water resistance categories (IP67). Click here for more information on the Xperia active.
"The partnership is an expansion of our long term relationship with Sony and an extention of an Asia Pacific alliance developed with Sony Ericsson in 2011," said Scott Wallace, Billabong's International VP of Strategic Partnerships & New Media. "Our customers are very tech savvy and their top interests include music, photography, social media and, of course, action sports. Each of these interests can be captured or experienced through the Xperia™ active and we are working on some exciting apps and accessories that should add to the user's experience. The first to benefit will be the athletes at our major international events who will be testing the Xperia™ active device in conditions as diverse as the snowfields in Austria, surfing the big waves of Tahiti and even skateboarding in Singapore."
The partnership extends beyond the Xperia™ active as Sony Ericsson and Billabong have also co-created exclusive content for additional Xperia™ devices. The Xperia™ active Billabong Edition will feature preloaded Billabong screenscavers, videos and Billabong LIVE, a mobile app now available in the Sony Ericsson channel in Android Market, and the Xperia™ PLAY will boast an exclusive surf game, Billabong Surf Trip.
Sony Ericsson Xperia smartphones will be featured in major Billabong events worldwide. In addition, Sony Ericsson has more to offer its retailer and operator partners with this unique alliance which gives way to an amplified retail strategy with assets, such as merchandise and event access, which will be used in retail promotions.