Sprint, HTC announce 3D smartphone, 7-in. tablet

Both to be available this summer (see tablet demo video, below)

ORLANDO -- Sprint and HTC on Tuesday announced a 3D smartphone and a 7-in. tablet that will both run over Sprint's 4G WiMax network.

The HTC Evo 3D smartphone and the HTC Evo View tablet will both be available sometime this summer, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said at the International CTIA Wireless conference here. Pricing was not announced.

Sprint and HTC introduced the first WiMax smartphone, the HTC Evo 4G, a year ago. That phone, which started shipping in June, has been Sprint's most successful smartphone, Hesse said.

Users will be able to experience the stereoscopic 3D capability of the new Evo smartphone without wearing glasses, and they will be able to send content from the phone to a 3D-capable TV through an HDMI port, Sprint officials said.

The growth in popularity of 3D televisions, which require viewers to wear special glasses, indicates that 3D-capable smartphones will also be popular, they predicted.

The Evo smartphone will run Android 2.3, known as Gingerbread.

It will also feature a dual-core 1.2-GHz Snapdragon processor, making it the fastest smartphone on the market, HTC said.

The View tablet will come with a Scribe digital pen that's designed to enable handwritten input and editing of documents. It will also record audio, and users will be able to tap a word in a transcript of the audio recording to jump to that point in the recording, Sprint said.

The tablet runs a 1.5-GHz processor and has front- and rear-facing cameras for videoconferencing. It will first ship with the Android 2.3 operating system but will be upgraded to Android 3.0, also known as Honeycomb, as soon as possible, Sprint said.

Hesse said the two new products bring Sprint's lineup of WiMax-capable devices to 22 products. He described the carrier's WiMax network as "4G and not faux G" -- a jab at other providers' 4G networks, which tend to be slower than Sprint's.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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