updated 07:50 am EDT, Mon April 13, 2009
Dell China Mobile Rumor
Dell is pinning its hopes for a first smartphone on a deal with the world's largest carrier, Wedge MKI analyst Zhang Jun said today in an interview with NetworkWorld. The American company is reportedly in talks with China Mobile to offer "one or two" candidate models and may strike a deal by August, paving the way for a release before the end of the year. While only implied, it's thought the Dell phone would use China Mobile's Open Mobile System (OMS), a variant of Android that supports the carrier's apps as well as China's new TD-SCDMA network for 3G.
The aim would be to offer a more interesting design than what China Mobile has had so far for TD-SCDMA. As most smartphone developers prefer international standards like HSPA, the government-backed TD-SCDMA standard has had relatively little support from hardware developers. So far, the most advanced phone in store for China Mobile is the Lenovo OPhone, which also uses OMS.
An agreement would represent an important win for Dell, which is rumored to have been forced to redesign its phones after prototypes were rejected as too functionally similar to phones from other companies. Dell is believed interested in smartphones to both keep its foothold in mobile computing and to compete with Acer, Apple, HP and other PC makers also involved in smartphones.