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Verizon Toughens Up Android Line With Casio Commando

Basking Ridge, N.J. – Verizon’s
first ruggedized Android-based smartphone, the Casio G’Zone Commando, will go
on sale April 28 at $199.99 through the carrier’s on-line store and through its
B2B sales force.

It joins the first ruggedized
Android smartphone, the Motorola i1,

last year

by Sprint for its iDEN network.

The Android 2.2-based device is
targeted to outdoor businesses as well as to outdoor adventurers, thanks to a
variety of business- and outdoor-oriented features. For durability, it meets
military 810G standards for water immersion, rain, shock, dust, vibration,
salt fog, humidity, solar radiation, altitude, and low and high temperatures.

Features include 3.6-inch screen,
800MHz processor, 5-megapixel camera with auto-focus and LED light, encryption
for corporate email, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n connectivity, stereo Bluetooth, VZ
Navigator service for turn-by-turn driving instructions, and mobile hotspot
capability to let Wi-Fi-enabled devices share a 3G connection simultaneously.
Its XT9 and T9 trace input technology speeds up typing on a touchscreen. A
snap-out menu allows for customized quick access to high-use business apps.

 For outdoor types, the device comes with
G’zGEAR software to deliver eight functions. They are:

  • n earth compass, which uses
    GPS to show distance and direction to domestic and international landmarks.

  • A walking counter, which
    measures steps, distance, energy consumption, and total steps for the day, week
    or month. It also provides virtual treks for famous North American trails and

  • Adventure training, which lets
    users run with virtual opponents, such as world-record holders, wild animals,
    or their own best personal performance stored in the training history.

  • Trip memory, which records
    outdoor activities and location information to share on Twitter and Facebook.

  • Daily tidal graphs, including
    tide ebb and flow, plus past and future sea tide levels.

  • A thermometer to compare current
    temperature across multiple locations.

  • A sun/moon tracker to checks
    the time of the next sunrise, sunset, moonrise and moonset and track the moon
    phases for your current location.

  • And a star gazer, which uses
    GPS to display the stars and constellation names based on the current season
    and time.

The $199 price requires two-year
unlimited-data plan at $29/month plus a voice plan.