By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
LG is focusing on fashion, music, TV and phone-to-phone video streaming in highlighting five new phones at its booth.
The VX8700 clamshell will debut in mid-April with metal finish, mirror-like screen and the ability to download music over a cellular network. The digital dual-band (800/1,900MHz) phone is intended for a CDMA 1x EV-DO network. The 3.77-ounce, 3.82-inch by 1.95-inch by 0.54-inch model features a 2-megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth, playback of MP3 and protected-WMA music sideloaded from a PC and playback of music downloaded over an EV-DO network. Pricing wasn't available, but it is positioned as a high-tier model.
The company's CU500v clamshell will be one of the first phones offering live phone-to-phone video-streaming service when AT&T/Cingular becomes the first carrier to go commercial with the service before the summer. The service will be available in the carrier's 160+ W-CDMA high-speed downlink packet access (HSDPA) markets.
The service will enable one-way live video streaming during a two-way voice call between compatible phones that must be operating in one of AT&T's HSDPA markets. Frame rates could go to 15 fps but will probably be more like 13 fps on average, AT&T said.
The 3.7-ounce CU500v features a 1.3-megapixel camera that swivels so it can be aimed at the person holding the phone or at an event that the caller wants to stream. Users can also stream video stored on their phone.
The phone operates in GSM/EDGE mode in the 850, 900, 1,800 and 1,900MHz bands and in HSDPA mode in the 850 and 1,900MHz bands. It also features music player with dedicated external music controls.
LG's second music phone with built-in FM transmitter is the LG570, a digital dual-band 800/1,900MHz CDMA 1x EV-DO phone due in the second quarter from Sprint. The current Fusic also contains an FM transmitter. The new model is a clamshell with microSD card slot, mono Bluetooth, 1-megapixel camera, external touch-sensitive music controls and multiple color SKUs at an unannounced price.
The thin AX8600 music phone is expected to be available this week from carrier Alltel at $49.99. The clamshell phone features MP3 and AAC music playback, external music keys, glowing touch-sensitive keys, microSD slot and availability in three colors: marine blue, gold and apple green.
LG's VX9400 is the company's first phone with 700MHz MediaFLO TV tuner. It's due in March at an undetermined price from Verizon Wireless for use in the 20 Midwest and West markets where the carrier launched MediaFLO-based V Cast Mobile TV service. The service offers eight video channels at $15/month or four for $13/month. A $25/month package offers eight channels plus regular cellular-band V Cast services such as streaming video clips, Web browsing and unlimited e-mail.
The VX9400 is a dual-band 800/1,900MHz CDMA 1x EV-DO phone with 2.2-inch display screen that can be rotated into landscape mode for TV viewing. A retractable antenna improves TV reception. The phone lets users receive phone calls and text messages while a TV program is streamed, and it displays a Verizon program guide. It will join Samsung's MediaFLO-enabled SCH-u620, already available from Verizon.
Other 8400 features include playback of MP3 and WMA files, over-the-air music downloading, 1.3-megapixel camera, and stereo Bluetooth.
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