By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
LAS VEGAS – TCL Communications is using its Alcatel One Touch brand to build up its presence in the U.S. smartphone and tablet markets and expand its sales through tier-one wireless carriers in 2013.
At International CES, TCL stepped up its U.S. portfolio of Alcatel One Touch smartphones and tablets with the launch of Android smartphones with larger screens and faster CPUs, an expanded tablet lineup, and its first cellular-enabled tablets.
Alcatel One Touch also unveiled its first U.S.-market 4G Wi-Fi hot spot, which is designed for home, car and mobile use.
Six new Android smartphones include the Idol Ultra with 4.65-inch HD display and Scribe HD with 5-inch HD display. The former is touted as the thinnest smartphone ever at 6.45mm (0.253 inches) in depth compared to the iPhone 5’s 0.3 inches, the Samsung S3’s 0.34 inches, Huawei’s PS 1’s 0.263 inches, and Motorola’s Droid Razr M’s 0.326 inches.
The Idol Ultra features dual-core 1.2GHz processor, and the Scribe features quad-core 1.2GHz processor, whereas the company’s current U.S. lineup doesn’t include dual- or quad-core processors. The screen sizes in the company’s current lineup also max out at 4.3 inches.
The Idol Ultra feature Android 4.1 JellyBean OS, 4.65-inch HD Amoled display, 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 8-megapixel camera with LED flash, fivepoint capacitive multitouch capability, no memorycard slot, 850/1,900MHz HSPA, and quad-band GSM. Additional details were unavailable.
The Scribe HD features Android 4.1 JellyBean OS, 5-inch HD IPS display, five-point capacitive multi-touch capability, 8-megapixel rear camera with LED flash, front 720p HD camera, quad-core 1.2GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 32GB memory-card slot, quad-band GSM, and HSPA in the 850MHz and 1.7/2.1GHz AWS bands. It’s the first phone with MediaTek’s MT6589 quad-core chipset with high-performance multimedia support, the company said.
Four other Android smartphones feature Android 4.1 OS, screen sizes from 3.5 to 4.5 inches, capacitive multi-touch displays, quad-band GSM, and HSPA in the 850/1,900/2,100MHz bands. Three have 1GHz CPUs, and the model with 4.5-inch display features a dual-core 1GHz CPU. The 4.5-inch model also sports qHD-resolution display and fivepoint multi-touch capability. The other three models have HVGA or WVGA resolutions.
Among five new U.S.-market tablets, the EVO7 and EVO7 HD are 7-inch Wi-Fi models that can be upgraded to HSPA+ 21Mbps or to LTE via a cellular module that can be inserted by the consumer. The Evo7 features Android 4.0.3 OS, 1,024 by 600 TFT capacitive multi-touch display, 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 CPU, 1GB RAM, 4GB flash memory, MicroUSB port, MicroSD slot, front 0.3-megapixel camera, Bluetooth 2.1 and optional HSPA+21Mbps module.
The Evo7 HD raises resolution to HD, the OS to Android 4.2, and the CPU to a dual-core 1.6GHz processor with quad-core GPU. The tablet also adds dual 2-megapixel cameras. The cellular options include both HSPA+21Mbps and LTE.
Like the Evo7, the Evo7 HD features 1GB RAM, 3GN flash memory, MicroUSB port, MicroSD slot, capacitive multi-touch capability and Bluetooth.
Shipments are due in the third quarter for both models. Pricing and availability of the Evo7 wasn’t available, but the Evo7 HD will be available in the third quarter in the U.S. at $179 for the Wi-Fi version, $249 with HSPA+ module, and $349 with LTE module.
Three other tablets feature Wi-Fi, Android 4.1 OS, and capacitive multitouch displays and are due in the U.S. in the third quarter. Two are 7-inch models with dual-core 1.6GHz CPUs, and one is an 8-inch model.
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