TechGear: Three new phones rise to challenge Apple
The iPhone competitors just keep on coming
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AT&T and Verizon each launched a new phone this week that either emulates key functionality of Apple's popular iPhone or bests it with functionality not found in the iPhone. And rumors of a new BlackBerry could challenge the iPhone where it really counts.
AT&T, the same company that exclusively carries the iPhone, will start offering the Windows Mobile HTC Tilt phone tomorrow. The phone is a slider, meaning that part of it slides back to reveal a horizontal keyboard. But then the screen "tilts" up at an angle like a laptop.
The triband HSDPA phone has a 2.8-in., 320 by 240 touch screen, GPS, 3-megapixel camera with autofocus and 802.11b/g Wi-Fi -- and it connects to the Internet at 3G speeds.
It also features BlackBerry Connect, which lets people who work for companies with BlackBerry servers get push e-mail, contact, calendar, to-do and memo items.
Verizon's new phone is less feature-packed, but more iPhone-like. Its large screen and on-screen buttons are similar in concept to the iPhone's. But the LG Voyager, exclusive to Verizon, also sports a hidden full physical keyboard, exposed via a clamshell hinge.
The Voyager offers 3G data speeds, 2-megapixel camera, HTML Web browser and Verizon Wireless' V Cast mobile TV, video and music service.
The Voyager ships sometime this month. Pricing hasn't been announced.
Meanwhile, a blurry photo emerged today to accompany rumors of an iPhone-like BlackBerry phone called the BlackBerry 9000. Rumors say the phone's front will be all-screen and the buttons will be virtual.
It remains to be seen if any of these phones, or others, can put a dent in the iPhone's popularity or growing market share. But competition is certainly good for consumer choice.
Here comes dial-a-radio
A "radio on demand" service called CelleCast lets you dial a phone number -- (360) 335-6000 -- from any phone and listen to radio stations on your phone. Like TiVo, you can pause, rewind and fast-forward your way through the programming. You choose the stations and programs in advance, then just pick from the list from your phone.
Gateway unveils giant, 30-in. monitor
You can never be too rich, too thin or have too big a monitor. Gateway just unveiled its XHD3000, a 30-in. widescreen LCD monitor that doubles as a midsize big-screen TV. Best of all, the $1,699 display offers 2,560 by 1,600 resolution using something called Hollywood Quality Video. Trust me. It's good. The monitor supports all major video input technologies and features eight built-in speakers.
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