We have just been sent the first images of what is believed to be the Sony Ericsson MT27i ‘Pepper’. The MT27i is believed to be the successor to the Xperia neo V and rumours point to this handset running a 1GHz dual-core processor (most likely the ST-Ericsson NoveThor U8500 chipset) with a 3.7-inch (480 x 854 resolution) display. It is supposed to have a 5MP camera and shoot 720p video.
There appears to be a certain theme running through the 2012 Xperia range, judging by what we’ve seen so far. Whilst it doesn’t have the same LED notification strip as seen in the Nozomi and Nypon, it still seems to share the ‘chin’ feature of the aforementioned handsets. It also shares the same straight lines of the Nozomi/Nypon rather than the curves of the 2011 line-up.
The front of the handset has three capacitive buttons for back, home and menu functions and the front-facing camera sits next to the notification LED. The back of the handset shows the camera lens surrounded by an embossed plastic ring, with a small LED flash sitting on top. Near this you can see a noise suppression mic too.
We can’t be sure what is sitting next to the prototype label, but we’d guess it is a speaker of some kind. We’re not exactly keen on the two-colour back cover, however as this leak is clearly labelled as a prototype we won’t read too much into the design at this stage.
This handset is meant to be the successor to the Xperia neo V. We doubt there will be a true Xperia neo successor in 2012 as we expect Sony Ericsson to employ greater differentiation between handsets this year. In 2011, the Xperia arc and Xperia neo sat too closely together in terms of features. This could be one of the reasons (along with component shortages) why SE decided to discontinue the neo with 8MP Exmor R camera and release the neo V with 5MP camera. We’re not sure if the Sony Ericsson MT27i Pepper will be announced next week at CES, however if not, then expect a reveal at MWC in February 2012.