Like it did last year with phones like the Xperia Arc S and Ray, Sony Mobile is expected to launch a second wave of smartphones for the second half of 2012, most likely starting with an announcement at the IFA show next month in Berlin. This year, one of the like candidates for Sony's second-half flagship is the as yet unnamed LT30p or "Mint," to give it its codename. We've seen plenty of info on this device leak out already over the past few months (including a trip to the Bluetooth SIG which revealed its specs in full), but now we have the first leaked photos of the phone itself, thanks to an unofficial preview over on Mobile-Review.
The site's pics reveal a phone closely resembling a flattened Xperia GX. In fact, this has to be one of the most unassuming designs we've seen from Sony in some time. It's basically a large black slab with a soft touch rear panel and a slight "chin" to the front, similar to the Xperia Sola. Android purists, however, will be pleased to see the inclusion of on-screen buttons rather than capacitive or physical keys. Other notables include a non-removable battery, a microSD card slot for expandable storage, and the inclusion of Sony's WhiteMagic tech for improved daylight visibility.
The unauthorized preview also yields a full spec list, which almost exactly matches what's been previously rumored -- a Snapdragon S4 dual-core CPU inside, a 720p display, 13MP camera and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. However, it's claimed that the "Mint" will feature a 4.3-inch screen, compared to the Xperia GX's 4.6-incher. Based on this -- and the slightly less ambitious design -- we'd place the Mint slightly below the expected LT29i Hayabusa in Sony's H2 2012 line-up. That phone's expected to launch with similar internals, only with a 4.6-inch display and a more curvaceous design, similar to last year's Xperia Arc.
For the moment, though, this is speculation. We'll know for certain when Sony shows off its new stuff at IFA in Berlin on Aug. 29.