Engadget has published an exclusive preview of Sony's upcoming PlayStation Phone, which is due to appear at next month's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Reportedly named "Xperia Play", the device features a four-inch 854x480 multitouch screen that slides up to reveal PlayStation-esque controls. Gaming buttons include a D-pad, four action buttons (triangle, circle, square and x), two shoulder buttons, and two circular touchpads that serve as analog sticks.

Overall, Engadget says the device is comfortable to use and has a better build quality than the PSP Go. The site has posted a demo video of the Xperia Play running a few emulated games, including Ridge Racer Revolution, Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4, Gundam Battle Assault 2, and Super Mario Bros. 4. Sony hasn't been clear about what games will be supported at launch, nor has it mentioned pricing or a delivery method, but we imagine that will be covered at MWC.

The handset runs Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and is powered by single-core Qualcomm MSM8655 SoC with a processor that clocks from 122.88MHz to 1GHz and an Adreno 205 GPU. In one benchmark (NenaMark), the Xperia Play scored similarly to the Tegra 2-powered LG Star. It also carries 512MB of RAM and a 1500mAh battery that gives about a full day of moderately active 3G use. The 5MP camera is limited to 800x480 video recording and is accompanied by LED flash.