updated 11:10 am EST, Wed December 5, 2007
Dell Smartphone Imminent
Dell is near the end of developing its return to the handheld market through a smartphone, according to a hint in the latest issue of Forbes. Expanding on a leak from earlier this year, the Texas PC maker is allegedly coordinating the production of a phone with the Taiwanese manufacturing firm Quanta and is drawing on the expertise of recently added executive Ron Garriques, who previously headed the mobile division at Motorola before he jumped to Dell early this year. The new phone will focus heavily on music and video playback as well as Internet access, although the report is unclear as to whether the computer builder is customizing the interface or using off-the-shelf software.
Previous reports suggested the device will be a spiritual revival of the Axim PDA phased out at the company in April. Windows Mobile 6, a variant on 3G Internet access (likely HSPA), and a full keyboard similar to RIM's BlackBerry Curve or Palm's Treo are all considered likely candidates for the device.
Although the original rumor did not suggest a release date, the new report points to a release in early 2008, roughly a year after Garriques' switchover to Dell and in time for a potential announcement at the CES technology expo in January. If launched on GSM, the unnamed phone is most likely to be carried by AT&T.