updated 03:55 am EST, Tue February 15, 2011
Feature dedicated Facebook button, instant sharing
True to the leak running up to HTC's World Mobile Congress event, HTC has delivered the first mobile phones with a dedicated Facebook button. While not officially called Facebook phones, the new HTC Salsa and HTC ChaCha are centred on delivering hard-wired access to a user's Facebook page making instant social updates just a click away. "With more than 500 million active users worldwide, Facebook has become synonymous with the social web and we wanted to create the ultimate socially connected phones with mass market appeal," said HTC CEO Peter Chou.
The Facebook button on HTC Salsa and HTC ChaCha is context-aware, gently pulsing with light whenever there is an opportunity to share content or updates through Facebook. With a single press of the button, users can update their status, upload a photo, share a website, or post the song they are listening to. Users can also take a photograph of friends on their phone and upload it instantly to Facebook by simply pressing the button.
The phones come pre-installed with Android 2.4, which is essentially a mildly revised version of Android 2.3, Gingerbread. The HTC Salsa centers on a 3.4-inch 480 x 320 resolution touch display and incorporates a 5-megapixel camera. For face-to-face conversations on the move, the VGA forward-facing camera enables high-quality video calling.
The HTC ChaCha comes with a full physical QWERTY keyboard for those that prefer a tactile feel when typing. It centres on a 2.6-inch 480x320 resolution touch screen and also incorporates a 5 megapixel camera.
As might be expected with compact socially oriented phones aimed at the Facebook generation, both are fitted with modest 600MHz processors. The upside is that pricing can be expected to be sharp when the phones hit the market this Spring.