Believe it or not, Christmas is but 11 weeks away which means that every single tech company on the planet is going to be lighting up our inboxes with press releases about their holiday offerings. The first company to do this for 2009 is T-Mobile. Apart from another chance to get us bloggers talking about the Behold II and the Motorola CLIQ, T-Mobile took the opportunity to introduce two new handsets and a limited edition collaboration piece. The first new handset is the Nokia 3711, a 3G clamshell affair with a 2 megapixel camera, GPS by Telenav, and stereo Bluetooth. The second is the T-Mobile Tap. Presumably made by HTC based upon its appearance, the Tap is an “affordable and attractive” full-touchscreen featurephone that, like the 3711 has 3G, a 2 megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth and GPS by Telenav. New in another sense of the word is the myTouch 3G Fender Limited Edition. With only 10,000 to be offered sometime this winter, the Fender myTouch 3G sports a “guitar-inspired wood-grain finish”, 16GB microSD card filled with a bunch of music and videos not a soul alive won’t delete, and *gasp* a 3.5mm headphone jack. What do we think, people?
Motorola. Regardless of your brand loyalty, the aforementioned company changed the mobile landscape. Twice. First with the legendary StarTac and once again with the Motorola RAZR. Unfortunately, the RAZR by itself wasn’t enough to keep propelling Motorola’s mobile handset division forward for eternity. Here we are some five whole years later looking at what is Motorola’s most important product (and upcoming products) in recent memory. Enter the Motorola CLIQ. We’ve been fortunate enough to have one or two units of our own, even though there’s already been hands on sessions and a couple of reviews, we’re finally ready to tell you about it. We labeled this as a preview instead of a full review because we’re about two months out from launch. We’ll follow up to this post with findings from a unit T-Mobile sends us if there are any differences and additional thoughts.
If you’re a T-Mobile subscriber itching to get your hands on the latest and greatest, it looks like November 11th might be a date you want to jot down in your planner. Why, you ask? According to one of our ninjas, a T-Mobile higher-up has pegged November 11th as the tentative launch date for both the BlackBerry 9700 and the Motorola CLIQ. Wow. Have two more highly anticipated handsets ever launched with the same carrier on the same day? Now, to be crystal clear, this date is relayed to us as tentative so nothing is set in stone just yet. Where the CLIQ is concerned, the 11th definitely lines up well with the late-October pre-sale and the 9700 has been rumored to launch in November as well. On a related note, we’re hearing AT&T will launch the 9700 around the same time as T-mo, while Rogers will once again beat the US to the punch with a mid to late-October launch.
In a move that doesn’t exactly come as a surprise, Orange UK has officially announced that it will be carrying the Motorola DEXT, the European version of the CLIQ, as its second Android smartphone. The DEXT will be offered in early October for as little as £0 to those who opt for a 2-year contract with a monthly tariff of £34.26. It’s not exactly cheap, all things considered, but it’s also not as if you can find many plans Stateside that offer 900 minutes, unlimited texts, data and use of Orange Maps for around $56.50 per month.
Now that the excitement of the Motorola Android event has died down and the company’s first Android offering has been unveiled, we can take our focus off of what will be released and concentrate on when it will be released. The first rumor out the door comes from merry old England where Orange UK is said to be launching the Motorola DEXT in early October. Pre-orders are expected to begin September 22nd, though no specific release date has been specified. No pricing information is available yet either, but you know Europe — with the proper tariff nearly any phone can be had for free.
Note to phone manufacturers: When giving press/bloggers hands on time with the handset that is the crucial first step in your rebuilding process, please do so in desirable lighting as opposed to darkness. Ambiance is great on a first date — not so much when you’re tying to check out a new phone. Moving along, we finally had some time alone with the Motorola CLIQ a short while ago and we have to say, we were pretty impressed. This is not a high-end handset by any means of course, but it’s not supposed to be. Moto set out to create a social network-friendly handset for the younger crowd and in that regard, we think the company really excelled. Where the seasoned mobile enthusiast is concerned, the CLIQ gives us a glimpse of what’s in store for higher-end handsets like the Sholes that are still forthcoming. So sit back, relax and hit the jump for our initial thoughts and a handful of dimly-lit pics and a video.
You might have recently heard Motorola had some sort of announcement to make… well, it’s all over now and we’re left with the Motorola CLIQ. It’s the much-awaited and much-needed refresh to the company’s mobile device portfolio and it’s rather interesting. Like we reported, much of the customizations to the Android OS fall under the UI name of MOTOBLUR and that’s going to give you more social networking integration, widgets, and other connectivity options than you can handle. It will also allow each user to “customize his/her mobile device experience.” As far as raw specs go, we’re pleasantly surprised to report a 5 megapixel camera with video recording, UMTS/HSDPA, Wi-Fi, QWERTY slide-out keyboard, 3.5mm headset jack and a bunch more. Stones left unturned? Is the screen capacitive (our hearts hope so and we’d assume so, just odd how it’s not mentioned) and is there multi-touch support. All in all, we can’t wait to get our hands on it.