Modu to showcase production modular phone at MWC ’09

By on February 11, 2009 at 2:49 PM.

Modu to showcase production modular phone at MWC ’09

Modu had a pendulum-like year in 2008, showcasing with much fanfare a prototype of its modular phone at MWC 2008 only to reportedly lay off 25% of its staff in November. The phone has been plagued by launch delays and a lack of carrier interest in this novel design. Fear not Modu fans as Modu is back for MWC 2009, this time with a production model in hand.The Modu phone features a super small handset which can be slipped into several different jackets providing both fashion and additional functionality to the phone. Think of the old Compaq iPaq and its sleeves but a whole lot sexier and more versatile. The latest production version of the phone has been built to be sturdier with additional memory (2 GB) and a revamped UI. Four jackets will be available at launch and include:

  • Night jacket: night life design with edgy keypad, flashing lights, night mode imaging and a unique graphical user interface
  • Street-art jacket: vibrant and colorful with stereo speakers, dedicated music keys and a unique graphical user interface
  • Classic jacket: classic style mobile device with all essential communication features
  • Express jacket: transforms the phone into a colorful and playful mobile device

Other jackets, including a bicycle jacket, music jacket and photo frame jacket are expected to be available post-launch. Additional jackets will retail for $25 to $100 each. Dov Moran, founder of Modu, is hoping to release the Modu phone for $200 with two jackets included and is expected to deliver the Modu phone globally at the beginning of next quarter. Hit the jump for some press photos of the Modu phone and its four jackets.

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Toshiba unveils TG01 smartphone, takes aim at iPhone

By on February 3, 2009 at 9:07 AM.

Toshiba unveils TG01 smartphone, takes aim at iPhone

Toshiba plans to wow us all at MWC 2009 with a Windows Mobile handset that rocks a blazing fast processor and jaw-dropping display. The TG01 will be the first mobile handset to incorporate the 1GHz snapdragon processor from Qualcomm and will sport a 4.1″ WVGA resistive touchscreen with on-screen trackpad, HSDPA, aGPS, G-sensor, microSDHC support and DivX support. Toshiba calls it “faster, slimmer and better than the iPhone” – fighting words if we’ve ever heard them. The handset is reported to run Windows Mobile 6.1 with full flash support which suggests it will ship with Internet Explorer Mobile 6 as well. With Toshiba boasting that “We’ve taken all the technology from our TVs and put that into the screen”, we are already lining up our favorite movies and converting them to DivX for viewing on this drool-worthy screen. Will this be enough to revive Toshiba’s smartphone business? Only time and some solid carrier deals will tell.

[Via T3]

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Dell preparing to release a smartphone affectionately called the MePhone?

By on January 30, 2009 at 9:22 AM.

Dell preparing to release a smartphone affectionately called the MePhone?

Dell smartphone rumors surface again, this time courtesy of the Wall Street Journal. People “familiar with the matter” claim that Dell is poised to jump into the mobile handset market as early as next month. The company has reportedly been working on two prototypes, one a full touchscreen and one a slider that runs either Windows Mobile or Android. Dell’s is rumored to have spent much of last year contacting suppliers, carriers and Asian handset makers in order to prepare for a smartphone release. At the same time the Wall Street Journal published its article, SAI published its own inside information on the Dell smartphone. According to its sources, the Dell smartphone will be known as the “MePhone”, which hopefully is the code name and not the final product name. The Dell phone will focus on customization and is expected to be released on September 9th, 2009 (9/9/09).

Though the idea of a Dell-branded smartphone has been downplayed by Dell in the past, the rumor does have some credence as the company has experience in building mobile devices. The Dell Axim, in particular the X50v and X51v, were groundbreaking when released in 2005/2005 and that line is still widely popular amongst PocketPC enthusiasts even though Dell ceased production almost two years ago. Dell also has Motorola’s Ron Garriques, former head of Motorola mobile handset division, on their smartphone team. Let us also not forget Zing, a encompassing tool to deliver multimedia to your mobile device. Dell also purchased Zing in 2008 and has failed to utilize this asset in any of its devices. What better place for it to be used than on a new smartphone? Though the evidence is compelling, don’t get your hopes up too high as these plans are supposedly tentative and Dell can scrap them at any time. We will have to wait until MWC 2009 or even CTIA to see if Dell makes a surprise appearance and wows us with what we hope will be a stellar offering.

[Via Silicon Alley Insider]

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