By Amy Gilroy
Updated! The CTIA Wireless show opens today with Sprint finally showing off its 4G Evo smartphone made by HTC.
To be released this summer, the Android phone has a large 4.3-inch 480 x 800 TFT LCD (as big as a portable navi device!), and runs on a combination of CDMA and WiMAX, says Engadget.
The Evo has 1GB of built in memory and 512MB of RAM…plus an 8 megapixel camera with flash…plus a 1.3 megapixel front facing camera, Engadget says.
The CTIA Wireless show, through Thursday in Las Vegas, occurs in a backdrop of solid growth for smartphones but slowing growth for mobile carriers such as Verizon and AT&T, as about 90 percent of the people in the U.S. already own a cellphone, reports Reuters.
Luring people into data plans won’t provide enough revenue to offset slow subscriber growth, say analysts, as many consumers are just saying no to the $30 unlimited data plans required for some smartphones—a steep sell in a recession.
Analysts predict a 15 percent drop in subscriber additions for the first quarter over the fourth quarter, which is more severe than the typical 5 to 10 percent drop after the fourth quarter.
However, for CE vendors and retailers, smartphone and netbook sales are expected to be among the bright spots in consumer electronics this year. The Consumer Electronics Assn. (CEA) predicts “a strong 2010” for wireless handsets with smartphone, generating nearly $17 billion in shipment revenue and more than 52 million unit sales in 2010. Smartphones are now 30 percent of total wireless phone shipments and growing.
At CTIA Motorola is showing the first push-to-talk Android phone—the Motorola i1. It has a 3.1 inch screen and WiFi and will be sold through Sprint starting this summer. Users can view who is calling regardless of the app they are using. It includes a Microsoft document viewer and 5 megapixel camera. No price has been set.
Also at CTIA Verizon may also offer updates on its planned LTE network.
Another Android phone comes from Kyocera who returns to the cellphone market with a low cost Zio, due in the second quarter.
The Zio’s key features are a 3.5 inch WVGA touch screen, which PCMag called gorgeous, and a low price. The CDMA and WiFi phone with trackball and touch screen input is expected to sell in the neighborhood of $169 to $216 without contract, which would make the Zio a bargain priced smartphone with a screen wide enough to show web pages, said PCMag.
Other features include 3.2 megapixel camera with video recording, stereo Bluetooth, a memory card slot for up to a 32GB card, and 512 MB of on-board memory for apps.
Sources: Engadget, Motorola, Reuters, PCMag.com, CEA, newsfactor.com
Photo: The HTC Evo
Photo credit: Engadget