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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

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May 6, 2008 9:18 AM

HTC's sparkly Touch Diamond smartphone

Posted by Brier Dudley

Taiwanese phone maker HTC, which has its U.S. headquarters in Bellevue, is making a splash with its new "Touch Diamond" phone unveiled today in London.

The Touch Diamond has a "3D" touch interface that will be compared to the iPhone.

But I wonder how soon we'll start taking multitouch interfaces for granted on high-end smartphones -- they'll all feel a little bit like the iPhone soon. Then we can start comparing other features and capabilities, like speed and battery life, or just argue about which phone looks cooler.

The Touch Diamond looks nice, if you like that angular look that you see on new Cadillacs:

htc1.jpg


It has a 2.8-inch screen; 3.2 megapixel camera that can make video calls and 4 gigs of internal storage.

Microsoft's got to be happy about the interface showcasing the capabilities of Windows Mobile 6.1.

But speed may be where the Touch Diamond really shines. The HSDPA device can download at up to 7.2 Mbps, which is faster than most residential broadband subscriptions in the U.S.

The Touch Diamond goes on sale in Europe in June, then Asia and the Middle East and finally the Americas in the second half of the year.

I wonder if this is one of the devices that T-Mobile referred to Monday, when it said faster devices would be available later this year to start really taking advantage of its new 3G network.

Here are the stats from HTC's announcement:

-- Connectivity: WCDMA / HSPA: 900/2100MHz. HSDPA 7.2 Mbps and HSUPA
-- Operating system: Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional
-- Display: 2.8-inch VGA touch screen
-- Camera: 3.2 megapixels, with video calling
-- Internal memory: 4 GB internal storage, 256 MB flash, 192 MB RAM,
-- Bluetooth: 2.0 with EDR
-- Wireless: Wi-Fi 802.11b/g
-- GPS: GPS/AGPS
-- Interface: HTC ExtUSB (mini-USB and audio jack in one; USB 2.0 High-Speed)
-- Battery: 900 mAh
-- Talk time: GSM: up to 4 hours
-- Standby time: GSM: up to 300 hours/100 hours with push e-mail
-- Chipset: Qualcomm MSM 7201A 528MHz

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Gadgets and games | Fun stuff I've written about lately includes Apple's iPhone, Hewlett-Packard's HDX laptop and Microsoft's Halo3. Also on the radar are new digital video boxes such as the Tivo HD and the Vudu.