updated 11:10 am EDT, Mon April 20, 2009
Ophone in China by May
China Mobile is due to release the Lenovo-made Ophone this May, beating Apple's iPhone to the market, which itself is rumored to go on sale in China in June through carrier Unicom, says a Monday DigiTimes report. The two touchscreen smartphones share similarities, including a similar look to the touch-enabled user interface on a large touchscreen, though the Ophone is already known to be based on China Mobile's customized version of Android known as the Open Mobile System (OMS).
Chinese-daily Commercial Times reports China Mobile will, at least initially, outsource production of the handset to both Lenovo and LG. Chipsets will come from Taiwan-based MediaTek. No pricing information has been announced for the handset, though it is expected to be competitive with the iPhone if it's released in the country.
Known specs of the Ophone include a five-megapixel autofocus camera with flash and video recording, a confirmed microSD memory card slot, and Bluetooth 2.0. It's not known how much onboard memory will be built into the handset. An English/Chinese virtual keyboard will be the primary input method.