Mobile Phone maker Sony Ericsson announced it is extending support for 3D graphics into its upcoming phones, adopting specialized hardware and software as it seeks to usher in a new era of mobile gaming.

The firm said on Tuesday at London's Symbian Smartphone Show that upcoming models will feature support for Open GL-ES, a specialized graphics language, enabling developers to create complex 3D applications. The specification, which is geared towards mobile devices, stems from the industry standard Open GL language used in games such as id's Doom3.

Sony Ericsson is planning to accelerate design and production of Open GL-ES games by offering Software Development Kits (SDK), developer tutorials and a discussion forum.

We are extremely pleased to be the first to offer the tools, technology and know-how for OpenGL ES in the mobile space, considerably improving the quality of games whilst reducing development cycles and saving costs, said Mikael Nerde, Head of Developer Program & Content Planning at Sony Ericsson.

The phone maker announced that it is also working with semiconductor firm Imagination Technologies to integrate specialized graphics processor units (GPU) into future models. The GPU's will solely handle graphics, offloading the phones main processor for other tasks, the company said.

The PowerVR hardware acceleration core from Imagination Technologies delivers the performance needed to port console class games onto Sony Ericsson's phones, aid Tony King-Smith, VP of Marketing at Imagination Technologies.

Upcoming devices, including the M600 messaging device, P990 smartphone and W950 Walkman phone will all support the new graphics platform.