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A first look at the Sony Xperia Sola 'floating touch' display

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The Unwired has gotten the first look at Sony's Xperia Sola Android phone, which can recognize a finger floating above the screen.

Sony Xperia Sola floating touch
Sony Xperia Sola floating touch

The Sony Xperia Sola isn't a particularly unusual phone save for one feature: a 'floating touch' display that lets you operate the screen by hovering your finger over it. Yesterday, The Unwired got their hands on (as well as over) a Sola, giving us our first look at how well this technology actually works. Although it's apparently difficult to refrain from instinctively touching the phone, the sensor seems to work fairly well, letting users hover over a link before tapping to click it.

So far, The Unwired says that only Sony's browser supports floating touch — even the home screen is tap-only, and no other apps have been rebuilt to support it. However, it seems to work well for precision pointing and adds an extra dimension of control that's currently lacking in touch interfaces. Sony hasn't said anything about expanding this interface to other phones, so it's unclear whether it will be worth it to actually develop for the Sola alone, even with support for hover built into Ice Cream Sandwich, which will eventually be coming to the phone. If you're curious about how the Sola can sense your presence, Sony has previously explained the technology.