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AT&T Phones Speed Downloads

AT&T Wireless has expanded its selection of 3G phones that double the download speeds of the carrier’s previous models.

Motorola’s first Q smartphone for the AT&T network and the Pantech Duo join the HTC-made Tilt PDA phone, which was available last month. Samsung’s BlackJack II will be added later this year.

All four incorporate the 3.6Mbps versions of W-CDMA HSDPA (high-speed downlink packet access), which allows for simultaneous voice and data transmissions and datarate download speeds of 3.6Mbps in more than 200 AT&T markets. Average real-world throughput in the latest HSPA phones runs from 600kbps to 1.4Mbps, AT&T said.

The Q and Pantech Duo are QWERTY-keyboard-equipped smartphones with the Windows Mobile 6 Standard OS. The Tilt uses the Windows Mobile 6 Profession OS, which adds touchscreen capability.

The latest version of Motorola’s Q smartphone is the company’s first U.S.-market Q phone with W-CDMA HSDPA, the first Q phone available for the AT&T Wireless network, and the first Q phone with worldphone capability. Compared to the previous models, the new Q adds turn-by-turn driving instructions (enabled with TeleNav service), the Opera Web browser to offer a better browsing experience than Microsoft Explorer for small-screen devices, and included DataViz application. DataViz lets users originate Microsoft documents, not just read and edit them as provided by the Windows Mobile 6 Standard OS, Motorola said. The Q is the first Windows Mobile smartphone with included DataViz, Motorola added.

In another enhancement, Motorola is including free downloads of one of three applications bundles, each targeted to one of three segments found to be using Q phones. They are businesspeople, youth for whom social networking via messaging is important, and “home CEOs” who use messaging to organize their home lives, the company said.

For its part, Pantech teamed up with AT&T to launch the U.S. market’s first Windows Mobile dual-slider smartphone, which the companies contend is targeted equally at business users and youth.

The Duo, available at $199 with two-year contract, slides open vertically to reveal a dialing keypad, but it also slides open horizontally to reveal a separate QWERTY keyboard.

AT&T’s HTC-made Tilt at $299 features the Windows Mobile 6 Professional PDA-phone OS. The BlackJack II, with QWERTY keyboard and Windows Mobile 6 Standard OS, will be available later this year at prices as low as $149, AT&T said.