By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
With Spring Break in full force, handset suppliers broke a wealth of news during Wireless 2002. Here's what various handset suppliers displayed:
LG InfoComm: The company's first color screen phone, the clamshell LX-5350, is a dual-band CDMA 1x model with J2ME, gpsOne, MMS, and WAP 2.0 browser with instant messaging capability. It's targeted to ship in July to Sprint with upper tier pricing roughly around $199.
Nokia: Eight new phones include Nokia's first U.S. color screen phone (the keyboard-equipped 7210 smart phone), first CDMA 1x phones, first phones with J2ME and xHTML microbrowsers, and first hybrid GSM/TDMA phone.
The CDMA 1x phones are the trimode 6385 and trimode 3585, the latter with J2ME and interchangeable front covers with graphics that light up. The 6385 ships in early second quarter, the 3585 in the second half.
The Bluetooth phone is the triband GSM/GPRS 6310i with J2ME, likely shipping in the second quarter.
The 800/1900MHz GSM/GPRS 3590 features J2ME, xHTML browser, receive-only MMS, and polyphonic ring tones. It ships in the third quarter.
The 800/1900MHz GSM/GPRS 6590 features xHTML, no J2ME or polyphonic ring tones, receive-only MMS, and built-in FM radio. A ship date was unavailable.
The 7210 Communicator PDA-phone, a triband GSM model without GPRS, features Symbian OS, color screen, J2ME, two-way MMS, polyphonic ring tones. It ships in the second half.
The 1.9GHz 8270 will be the company's smallest CDMA 2G phone and weighs only 3.07 ounces. It ships early second quarter with microbrowser.
The 6340 GSM/TDMA phone, due in the first half, lacks GPRS. It operates on GSM 1900MHz, TDMA 800/1900MHz, and analog 800MHz networks.
Panasonic: A mockup GSM/GPRS phone featured built-in digital camera, color screen, MMS, and downloadable applications. AT&T is testing the phone, dubbed the GU87. Shipments to carriers are targeted to begin in December.
Samsung: Seven new phones, not nine as previously reported, include the company's first two with color screens and J2ME. They are the SPH-n400 flip phone and dual-LCD clamshell SPH-a500, both of which will be available for Sprint's CDMA 1x launch at possible retails of around $200 and $300, respectively. The n400 also accepts an optional add-on digital still camera.
Both 1x phones are trimodes featuring MMS, gpsOne, polyphonic ring tones, voice-activated dialing, WAP 2.0 browser with instant messaging, and ability to play on-line games. The n400 has 128x128-pixel screen; the a500 has 128x160.
Samsung also unveiled its first BREW-equipped phone, the SCH-a310 CDMA 1x. It's targeted to ship to Verizon in mid-third quarter. The 3.2-ounce trimode is a dual-LCD clamshell with 128x128-pixel display with blue backlighting. It will be the company's third phone for Verizon and Samsung's first 1x phone for Verizon. Features include gpsOne, WAP 2.0 browser, voice-activated dialing, changeable faceplates, vibrating alert, and voice dialing, but it lacks EMS or MMS. It's expected to retail for less than $200.
Samsung will expand its voice-only 1x selection to four models with the n240 and a460. The trimode n240 ships to Sprint in the third quarter, retailing for less than $100. The a460, Samsung's second 1x clamshell, ships to Sprint soon after the color-screen phones. It features dual LCD, gpsOne, polyphonic ring tones, vibrating alert, voice dialing, WAP 2.0, at an expected retail around $200. Neither features EMS or MMS.
Samsung's third VoiceStream product is the mass-market 900/1900MHz SGH-r225, which lacks GPRS but features user-selectable backlight colors, and picture and ring-tone downloading.
The fourth phone for VoiceStream is the r225m, which also lacks GPRS but adds AOL IM and browser, targeted to affluent teenagers at around $100 and due in early third quatrter. The r225 and r225m lack EMS and MMS but feature Nokia's smart messaging, said to be a precursor to EMS.
Siemens: Two new phones include the company's first with J2ME, the 1.9GHz GSM/GPRS M46. The second phone will be the first hybrid GSM/TDMA phone available in the United States. It ships next month through AT&T Wireless at $199.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.