Orange

Motorola DEXT hits Orange UK from early October

Motorola UK have confirmed that their new Motorola DEXT - the name for the Motorola CLIQ outside of the US - will go on sale through carrier Orange from early October.  Pre-orders for the handset will begin on September 22nd, though pricing is yet to be announced. At the launch event yesterday, Motorola themselves only said that the CLIQ would arrive in the US on T-Mobile sometime in the fall during Q4 2009.  They also confirmed that the device - as the DEXT - would see a release in Latin America and mainland Europe, though failed to give release dates. The DEXT has a 3.1-inch HVGA capacitive touchscreen, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 5-megapixel autofocus camera and 3G.  It also uses Motorola's new MOTOBLUR sync system, which you can see demonstrated in the video below. [vms 8137a16a1acd04ed9112]

Orange UK to offer free HTC Hero from early July

UK carrier Orange has confirmed that it will be offering the HTC Hero, the new Android smartphone that was announced just hours ago in London.  According to the carrier, the Hero will be available in early July, and will be exclusive to Orange in its graphite finish.  It's unclear whether that means they won't be offering the white model we saw today. The Hero will be free to new customers who sign up to a two-year contract of £39.15 ($65) per month.  That will net them 1200 cross-network minutes, together with unlimited texts and on-device data.  Interestingly, Orange's press release suggests that the Hero - while their first Android device - will only be the first smartphone running Google's platform to be launched on the network this year.  In fact, they're promising "several Android handsets" in 2009, though not specifying which models those might include.    Press Release:
Orange UK introduces first Android handset to its device portfolio with the introduction of the HTC 'Hero' Orange to exclusively retail the HTC Hero in ‘Graphite’, offering it free on selected pay monthly contracts from early July The HTC Hero is the first of several Android handsets Orange will range in 2009 Orange today announced it will be launching the much anticipated HTC Hero, the first Android device to be ranged by Orange in the UK. Available from early July across all Orange retail channels, the HTC Hero will be available for free on select price plans and will be exclusive to Orange in ‘Graphite’ colour. Offering a rich, intuitive browsing touch interface and premium design, the 3G+ enabled Hero features Google’s Android operating system, the world’s first ‘open-source’ operating system for mobile devices. Android allows users unrestricted access to thousands of amazing tools and applications which can be downloaded straight to the handset - helping enhance the device’s capabilities. Created for those wanting an optimised mobile customer experience, with easy access to Google’s most popular services, the Hero also provides users with a choice of seven specially designed unique user interface options. The handset also comes with an integrated five mega-pixel, auto-focus camera featuring camcorder capability, a gravity sensor, AGPS and 512 MB of memory with space for a 16Gb MicroSD card. What’s more, the 3.2 inch HVGA display features anti-fingerprint screen coating for improved smudge resistance and a longer lasting, clearer display. Orange is offering the HTC Hero for free to customers who take out a £39.15 per month, 24 month contract. The package includes 1200 any network call minutes, unlimited texts, as well as inclusive anytime internet browsing so users can make the most out of their mobile experience. Francois Mahieu, Director of Devices, Orange UK said, “We’re really pleased to be launching our first Android handset in conjunction with HTC. The first of several Android devices you can expect from us this year, we believe the Hero is a great all round device which will allow consumers to get to grips with all the things they love about the internet, whilst on the move. We expect it to be extremely popular when it hits shelves this summer.” The HTC Hero is exclusive to Orange in ‘Graphite’ and will be available from Orange shops and www.orange.co.uk/shop in early July.

Android Community Week In Review: Week 10 2009

Big Android news this week was HTC's recently announced Magic handset getting official release windows on Vodafone UK and Orange France. Running Google's Android, the Magic will offer 3G internet, GPS, a slimmer form [than the current G1], and an on-screen keyboard for typing. Release dates are March 15th for Orange France and sometime in April for Vodafone UK. In case you're wanting to keep closer tabs on this bleak global economic state, Google has released an official app for Android to help you do just that. Google Finance is available in the Android Market now for the very appropriate price of $0.00, but only to users in the US. The software has limited stock market support (for now), though the major US indices are covered in near-real time. More companies are looking at Android as a new and powerful mobile OS for their upcoming devices. Acer has been surrounded by talks and comments regarding the possibility of Android powering their two forthcoming handsets. No concrete answer was given when asked directly if Android was the choice, but an OS other than Windows Mobile was said to definitely be in the cards. Still needing some feature bumps since its original debut in 2006, Road's S101 HandyPC is rumored to have switched gears from a Linux distro to Android as its OS of choice. Yuhua have also followed up their design of General Mobile's DLST1 handset with the Xphone-SDK concept. While only a concept at this point, the phone is limited to EDGE connectivity. Considering Android's dependence on 'cloud' computing, this may pose a problem with potential slow-downs. Potentially ground-shaking news is Android's perceived ability to give Apple's OS X Touch (iPhone) a run for its money by 2012. Industry analysts are predicting that current economic conditions paired with Android's non-commitment to a particular carrier or handset manufacturer will give it the extra boost it needs to catch up with Apple. Also considered was the fact that Smart phones have outsold notebook PCs for the first time ever, possibly signaling more powerful mobile platforms providing the majority of functionality that people need away from their desks. While OS X Touch is somewhat limited in its ability to multitask, Android can accomplish multiple things at once. This could also draw mobile professionals with the need to get more work done while on the go.

HTC Dream gets March 15th release on Orange France

Hot on the heals of Vodafone UK's HTC Magic announcement comes confirmation that Orange France will launch the HTC Dream on March 15th.  The Android device - which is better known as the T-Mobile G1 - will be the first to use the platform in the country, prior to the HTC Magic's launch on SFR later in the year. Although pricing for the Orange France HTC Dream has not been announced, the carrier has released a few details of its monthly price plan for the handset.  Right now we know that there four different tariffs starting from €23 per month ($29) to cover line rental, calls and messaging, with an extra charge of €36 per month ($45) if users want unlimited mobile internet access. Interestingly, Orange is not yet a member of the Open Handset Alliance, unlike Vodafone.  This could be a sign that Android's potential is being recognized outside of Google's existing group of supporters.
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