HTC Unveils 'Mango' Smartphones
- By Scott Bekker
More Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango" smartphones have popped up, with HTC Corp. showing off two devices on Thursday.
The smartphones, using Microsoft's latest consumer mobile operating system, will begin coming to market sometime in October. The devices are the second unveiling from a major manufacturer to run the Mango version of Windows Phone OS, which was released to manufacturing in late July. Fujitsu unveiled its IS12T device in Japan on Aug. 24 (see "Mango Madness").
"The announcement of these new HTC phones is a big milestone in our march to Mango," wrote Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president of Windows Phone program management, in a blog post on Thursday about the HTC Titan and the HTC Radar.
Of the two phones that went on display at events in London, Paris, Madrid and Berlin, the flagship is the HTC Titan, which features a large 4.7-inch display. HTC bills the Titan as having its largest screen yet. By comparison, the Apple iPhone 4 has a 3.5-inch display, while the Samsung Infuse 4G, one of the larger Google Android-based devices, has a 4.5-inch display.
Aside from the 4.7-inch super LCD screen, the Titan features an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera and a 1.3 megapixel front facing camera (FFC).
"Now that these HTC phones have been formally announced, I can confirm officially that Mango does support these," Belfiore wrote of the front-facing cameras on both the Titan and the Radar.
"ISVs can build all kinds of interesting apps using the FFC. We'll have more announcements on some of the specific apps that will take advantage of this capability a little later on," Belfiore noted. One such announcement will likely be Skype-based video calling once Microsoft's acquisition closes (it is currently pending international regulatory approval).
HTC's news release about the devices also suggests that the screen size of the Titan, combined with some Mango enhancements, would make it into a more effective productivity tool than devices of the earlier Windows Phone 7 generation.
"With its expansive screen with built-in Microsoft Office Mobile, this super smartphone enables you to create, edit and collaborate quickly and easily," the Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer's release stated. HTC also noted the smartphone's benefits of having a larger virtual keyboard space via the 4.7-inch screen, plus the coming multitasking feature that will be enabled by Mango.
HTC is positioning the HTC Radar, which has a 3.8-inch screen, as more of a consumer device for social media. Both devices will go on sale first in Europe and Asia.
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.