Torrance, Calif. - The Pharos Traveler 137 smartphone, which doubles as a portable navigation device (PND), is available for the first time through a carrier, PND maker Pharos announced.
Carrier Cincinnati Bell has begun offering the Windows Mobile 6.5 full-touchscreen phone through select carrier-owned stores and the carrier's business channels at $249 with required data plan and two-year service contract. The phone operates in Cincinnati's Bell's tri-band 1.7/1.9/2.1GHz HSPA network and in GSM/EDGE mode in four bands for U.S and international use.
The 4.6-inch by 2.4-inch Traveler 137 is Pharos's third-generation smartphone/PND phone, having been available since about June 2009 in limited quantities through such dealers as Dell and as an unlocked model directly from Pharos. The suggested unlocked price is $569. Pharos also sells the phone with T-Mobile activation with rebates up to $250.
The 4.9-ounce phone features corporate and personal e-mail connectivity, 480 by 800 3.5-inch touchscreen with touch-and-sweep interface, 528MHz CPU, 3-megapixel camera/camcorder, a separate 0.3-megapixel camera for video conferencing, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and FM tuner.
Unlike traditional cellphone-based navigation, the Pharos phone does not depend on route-calculation software and maps that reside on a carrier server. Route-calculation software resides in the phone, and maps reside on an included MicroSD card, so navigation occurs even when cellular signal is lost.
Through Pharos, consumers can also rent a map on an as-need basis when traveling internationally by downloading them over the air. Consumers rent a corridor map for their specific route, a regional map, or the map of a foreign country for a day, week, month or year. Access to the maps would expire after the paid-for period expires. Prices are $1.50 a day, $5 a week or $9 a month.