Panasonic launching NFC-equipped Android smartphone in 2012

Panny preps new smartphone with a 4.3in OLED screen and NFC

Panasonic is preparing to re-enter the international smartphone market, with plans to launch a new Android phone next year. The phone will hit Europe in March 2012, before arriving in the US, China and Asia.

The as yet unnamed Panasonic Android phone will sport a 4.3in OLED screen with 960x540 QHD resolution – so around 256ppi, which won't trouble the Retina Display – and an "ultra-thin but easy to hold" 'D Slim Shape' design.

The phone also looks to be sporting NFC, going by the badge on the back – which means you'll be pulling it in and out of your pocket for mobile payments. Perhaps with that in mind, Panny's also touting the phone's rugged qualities – it will have waterproof and dustproof protection.

No word on whether Panasonic's phone will be launching with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich – though that telltale row of buttons along the bottom suggests not.

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