Ina Fried

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Sony Ericsson’s PlayStation Phone Ready to Hit Verizon, Productivity

Sony Ericsson’s Xperia Play, better known as the PlayStation phone, is finally making its way stateside.

Verizon Wireless said on Tuesday that the phone will land May 26 for $199 with a two-year contract. Pre-orders will start this Thursday.

Sony Ericsson announced the Android device at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February and had said it was coming Verizon’s way. Verizon showed it off at a party at the March CTIA show in Orlando but had not announced its arrival date and pricing.

The phone will come pre-loaded with seven game titles including Madden NFL 11, Tetris, The Sims 3 and Crash Bandicoot. As for other innards, it features a 1GHz Qualcomm chip, a 4-inch touch screen, 5 megapixel rear-facing camera and a front camera for video chat as well as its slide-out game pad with directional keys, touch joystick and PlayStation keys.

Its launch will be an interesting case study for just how well the market is ready for more highly segmented devices running Android. Sony Ericsson, meanwhile, is counting on the device to give it a jump start in the North American market, where the company has struggled.

Separately, Verizon this week is also expanding its 4G LTE network to a bunch of new cities and expanding services in several existing locales.