Sony Ericsson Xperia PlayStation phone coming to Verizon WirelessSony Ericsson’s first “ PlayStation phone ” is coming to Verizon Wireless in April as the company has been trying to get back in the U.S. market. The phone looks similar to the PSP Go, a version of the PlayStation Portable released in 2009.

The Xperia Play phone will have a big touch screen and a pad that slides out to reveal control buttons similar to those on a Sony PlayStation Portable. The phone marks a change in strategy for Sony and a coup for Sony Ericsson, which has been trying to get its phones back into the U.S. market.

The Play phone will run Google Inc.’s Android operating system and play modified PlayStation games that won’t run on other phones. It’s the first time Sony has allowed its PlayStation games to run on hardware not made by Sony. The license isn’t exclusive to Sony Ericsson, so other phone makers could follow, but Sony Ericsson will have a substantial head start.

Sony Ericsson CEO Bert Nordberg demonstrated the phone in Barcelona, a day ahead of the opening of the Mobile World Congress trade show there. But he kept mum on the Cost of the playstation phone.