Before Sony sold off the Vaio brand, it wasn’t known for smartphones, only for laptops. That has changed a little over the past months, primarily in Japan, where it launched an Android phone with the Vaio name on the back last year. Now it has returned with another phone, but without Google’s OS installed.
This time, it’s a Windows 10 phone.
It’s called the Phone Biz, an unusual name that actually sums up exactly who will want to buy it — business types. However, regulations folks shouldn’t overlook Vaio’s device, which is by far the best looking Windows 10 phone we’ve seen (despite the competition being slim). It’s wrapped up in a polished aluminum body, reminiscent of an HTC phone from the rear, while the Vaio branding still manages to exude some cool even after all it has been through.
Related: Hands-on with Windows Continuum
Windows 10 is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 processor and the Continuum feature is supported, meaning the phone becomes the heart of a desktop Windows machine when used with a special dock and a monitor. It definitely puts the ‘biz’ in business. The screen measures 5.5 inches and has a 1080p resolution, there’s 3GB of RAM, 16GB of internal memory, and a 13-megapixel rear camera complete the Phone Biz’s spec sheet.
The Phone Biz is slated for an April release in Japan, where it’ll cost the equivalent of $425 unlocked without a contract, but it’ll also be sold through the NTT DoCoMo network. It’s not clear if the package will include the necessary hardware to get Continuum working.
Will the Phone Biz ever go on sale internationally? Vaio has started to release its laptops outside Japan, but Windows Phone is hardly a popular choice for smartphone buyers at the moment, making it less likely the phone will be treated in the same way. We wait to be surprised, though.