It's not exactly the announcement we were looking for, but we'll take it as a sign that the launch of the highly anticipated Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 is that much closer. On Wednesday, Sony Ericsson released its Software Development Kit (SDK) for Windows Mobile 6.1 that will allow developers to create Web and native panels for the Xperia X1 smartphone.
If you'll remember, the Xperia X1, which was first introduced in February at GSMA, features a interactive panel interface that allows user to customize their Today screen. Given that capability, the SDK is an opportunity for content makers to develop such panels for various apps, such as videos, e-mail, games, and music.
The SDK is available as a free download from Sony Ericsson's developer site, and the kit includes such things as Microsoft Visual Studio templates, developer guidelines, sample code, and an Xperia X1 emulator. In addition, developers can submit their applications and panels for the Sony Ericsson Content Awards, where there will be a category dedicated to the Xperia X1. When ready, Sony Ericsson will offer a download service that will showcase all the available panels from partners and developers, and allow you to download them directly to the smartphone.
To learn more, check out this video by Sony Ericsson's Ramanath Bhat, who is in charge of application and product planning for the Xperia X1.