By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Handset and wireless-modem vendors such as LG, Samsung, HTC and Kyocera are expected to show new phones not displayed at the Mobile World Congress in February in Barcelona, but Sony Ericsson and RIM said they don't plan to introduce new models.
Here's a sampling of new handsets that will be displayed:
Kyocera: Two CDMA 1x sliders are the Laylo M1400 and the dual-slider G2GO M2000.
The Laylo is a basic bar-type slider that operates in the U.S. 800/1,900MHz bands and 1.7/2.1GHz AWS (Advanced Wireless Services) band. It features 2.2-inch QVGA display, large keys, Bluetooth 2.0, support for downloadable BREW and Java applications, assisted GPS, VGA camera, MMS and instant messaging, and up to 200 minutes of talktime or 200 hours of standby.
The dual-slider G2GO is an 800/1,900MHz model whose front panel slides up to reveal a phone keypad and slides to the side to reveal a QWERTY keyboard. An accelerometer automatically rotates the display into landscape mode when the phone is turned to a horizontal position to use the QWERTY keyboard.
Other G2GO features include dedicated music keys, 2.4-inch QVGA display, IMAP/POP3 email access, stereo Bluetooth version 2.0 with enhanced data rate, 1.3-megapixel camera and MicroSD card slot supporting 8GB cards.
HTC: The Touch Diamond 2 and Touch Pro 2 Windows Mobile 6.1 PDA phones, unveiled in Barcelona, are planned for North American distribution, but the company won't announce the U.S. versions' frequency bands or 3G technologies until carrier agreements are announced.
The Touch Pro2 will be available in the summer in the U.S. and globally. The Touch Diamond2 will be available in Europe and Asia in the second quarter with availability elsewhere later in the year.
Both feature touchscreen, but the Touch Pro 2 adds a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Although the keyboard slides out sideways, the Pro 2 can be used in landscape mode like a mini laptop, thanks to a tilt-up screen.
Both models sport new HTC features, including a people-centric viewing history of conversations, sorting all communications — including voice, SMS, and email — by person. Both also feature Straight Talk technology, which lets users initiate calls and conference calls directly from an email's “from, to and cc” lists. Users then flip the phone over to automatically activate a speakerphone with high fidelity delivered by asymmetric speakers, noise suppression and full-duplex acoustics.
Another new feature is zero-waiting Push Internet, which accelerates Web-page rendering and lets users preselect favorite Web sites for immediate access, and an enhanced version of the company's TouchFLO 3-D motion user interface.
Sierra Wireless: The company expects second-quarter carrier availability of its first two-in-one AirCard modem, which slides into PC Card or ExpressCard slots in mobile computers. The AirCard 402 is designed to spare consumers the expense of buying a new wireless modem when they upgrade mobile computers. It can be stored in the computer's slot so users can carry their laptop with the card in place.
The EV-DO Rev. A card connects at up to 3.1Mbps on the downlink and up to 1.8Mbps on the uplink, and it features Sierra Wireless's TRU-Locate GPS.
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