New Cellphone Introductions Offer Varied Selling Points
By Joseph Palenchar On May 3 2010 - 3:01am
NEW YORK — Processing speed,
high-resolution photography, media playback
and tree hugging were the dominant
themes in recent cellphone introductions.
The phones include HTC’s Droid Incredible,
which is Verizon’s first Android
smartphone with speedy 1GHz processor.
SonyEricsson’s unlocked 3G Satio smartphone
incorporates the highest-resolution
camera to date of any cellphone in the U.S.,
at 12.1 megapixels. For its part, Sprint announced
its third eco-friendly phone, the
Samsung Restore. Samsung’s Reality is a
touchscreen multimedia phone due from
Verizon. And AT&T’s Pantech-made Link
is a low-price quick-messaging phone.
The Droid Incredible
, which became
available through Verizon-owned stores
on April 29, retails for $199.99 after $100
rebate with two-year voice/data plan.
The rebate takes the form of a debit card.
Preorders became available April 19 at
Verizon’s Web site.
The Incredible features touchscreen
but no hard QWERTY keyboard or dialing
keypad. It uses the newest version of
HTC’s Sense user interface, which consists
of a seven-panel home screen and a
selection of interactive widgets. And it
comes with Friend Stream feature that
unifies Flickr, Facebook and Twitter updates.
Soon after the device becomes available,
Verizon will offer its NFL Mobile
and Skype mobile apps for the phone.
Other Incredible features include 3.7-
inch WVGA (480 by 800) AMOLED
capacitive touch display; optical joystick;
and dedicated touch-sensitive home,
menu, back and search keys. It also features
proximity sensor, light sensor, digital
compass, GPS, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g and
3.5mm headset jack.
Another Verizon phone, Samsung’s
, is a multimedia phone with 3-
inch WQVGA (240 by 400) touchscreen,
horizontal slide-out QWERTY keyboard,
customizable one-touch widgets
and multiple messaging options. It’s available
in red or piano black
through Verizon stores
and the carrier’s Web
site at $79.99 after a
$50 mail-in rebate
with a new two-year
contract for a talk
and text plan and a
data plan starting at
$9.99 per month for
25MB of data with
Including the Reality,
Verizon offers nine non-smartphone devices,
or 3G multimedia phones, that require
a data plan, a spokesperson said. The
others are the LG VX8360, Nokia 7705
Twist, Samsung Alias 2, LG Chocolate
Touch, LG enV Touch, Samsung Rogue,
LG enV3 and Casio G ‘zOne Brigade
Other Reality features include Samsung’s
TouchWiz interface, which includes
customizable widgets, including a
Communities widget that lets users update
social-networking sites, post pictures
and upload videos to YouTube and
other Web sites.
A new phone not available through
Verizon or any other U.S. carrier is the
3G-enabled Sony Ericsson Satio
, an unlocked
smartphone that boasts 12.1-
megapixel camera with Xenon flash,
integrated Facebook and YouTube applications,
16:9 3.5-inch touchscreen display,
Wi-Fi and stereo FM tuner.
The phone, which uses the Symbian Series
60 version 5 OS, operates
in 3G mode in the
band used by AT&T
and the foreign
2.1GHz band, the
company said. It’s
available only through
Sony Style stores and
at SonyStyle.com for
around $650, which includes
headphones, 8GB M2
memory card and USB connector cable.
Camera features include Xenon flash,
Sony’s Face Detection and BestPic technologies,
image stabilization, red-eye reduction
and video capture. A Geo-Tag
application and pre-installed Google
Mapslet users view the location where
photos are taken. The Satio phone’s 16:9
ratio screen shows videos and photos in
more than 16 million colors.
The phone expands the selection of unlocked
SonyEricsson phones available in
the U.S. to six. All are distributed in the
U.S. by Sony Electronics, which is the
only authorized distributor of unlocked
Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications
(SEMC) handsets in North America.
At the other end of the price spectrum,
AT&T is making the 3G Pantech Link
quick-messaging phone available for a
limited time at $9.99 after rebate with a
two-year contract requiring a voice plan
plus a minimum $20 per month messaging
or messaging and data plan.
The Link features full QWERTY
keyboard, thickness of less than 10mm,
Web browsing, and AT&T Social Net
app that can be used to view and update
online profiles from one hub.
For its part, Sprint announced its
third green phone, the Samsung Restore
which will be available in the summer at
$49.99 with a new two-year service agreement
after $50 mail-in rebate.
The messaging-oriented Restore, due
in Midnight or Limeaid colors, features
slide-out QWERTY keyboard with optical
joystick, 2-megapixel camera/camcorder,
MP3 player with included 2GB
MicroSD card and support for 32GB
cards, stereo Bluetooth, and access to
Sprint’s Family Locator, Football Live,
Navigation and Sprint TV3 services.
Restore’s outer casing contains 27 percent
post-consumer recycled plastic. The
handset itself is 84 percent recyclable and
features low levels of such materials as
PVC, phthalates, and beryllium. The device
is powered by an Energy Star 2.0 energy-