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.
, 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 mobile email.
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
, 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 U.S. 850/1900MHz 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 stereo Bluetooth 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
, 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- efficient charger.