HTC 'Dreams' Up Its Android Phone - InformationWeek

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3/20/2008
10:51 AM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
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HTC 'Dreams' Up Its Android Phone

HTC was one of the first handset makers to commit to building an Android phone this year. According to inside sources, that phone will be called the Dream. It will package together a large touch screen with a full qwerty keyboard. It should street later this year.

HTC was one of the first handset makers to commit to building an Android phone this year. According to inside sources, that phone will be called the Dream. It will package together a large touch screen with a full qwerty keyboard. It should street later this year.Has anyone ever read any Isaac Asimov novels? Particularly the Robot series? Has anyone at least seen "I, Robot"? Robots -- or Androids -- aren't supposed to be able to dream. So I find the name of this forthcoming Android-based phone from Taiwan's High Tech Computer, well, hard to grok. (OK, I'm mixing authors and sci-fi stories here, go with it). But at least it has a name, and has been made somewhat more official by someone "close to the situation," according to InfoWorld.

Details are still a bit slim, but the device will measure about five by three inches. It will have a qwerty keyboard that either slides up or swivels out to make browsing the Web, writing e-mails, or firing off text messages easier. Navigation will be done via controls below the screen. The last real detail shared is that the product will hit the market toward the end of 2008. Otherwise, HTC isn't sharing much. "We cannot comment on this product," said Maggie Cheng, an HTC representative.

If the end of the year seems pretty far away right now, remember that it takes 12 to 18 months to bring a product to market. Considering that a final version of the operating platform is months away from reality, it's not all that surprising that we won't be "Dreaming" until the fourth quarter. That puts it right on the mark, considering that Android was first announced (and HTC made its first commitments) in early November 2007.

But will this be the only Android handset we see from HTC? I don't think so. Though HTC's CEO said the company would make "two or three" Android handsets in 2008, I've been told the real number is "two." Since the Dream appears to be more for the traditional smartphone crowd in terms of overall form factor, I have to wonder if HTC's other Android phone will be more of a bar-style device that is more suited to consumer use.

Whatever it is, I hope they don't name it R. Daneel Olivaw.

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