Sprint, Motorola unveil Android smartphones for business users

XPRT is world phone with hotspot for $130; the rugged Titanium offers push-to-talk capability

XPRT
Motorola XPRT

Motorola Mobility and Sprint today jointly unveiled two new Android smartphones, the Titanium and the XPRT, that target business users.

Sprint will start shipping XPRT phone on June 5 for $129.99 with a two-year contract.

The two devices look almost the same, with 3.1-in. touchscreens and physical Qwerty keyboards.

However, the XPRT has rounded corners and a sleeker look than the Titanium. The Titanium, meanwhile, has angular corners and is built military-grade tough to handle dust, shock, vibration, low pressure, solar radiation and high and low temperatures.

Rugged features such as those in the Titanium usually raise the cost of handheld devices significantly. Sprint did not disclose pricing or availability for the Titanium.

One of the biggest differences in the two devices is that Titanium alone is a push-to-talk device. It is the successor model to the Motorola i1 launched last year by Sprint.

Push-to-talk over Nextel Direct Connect offers sub-second connections without dialing. The technology is widely used by workers in warehouses, and in the repair and construction trades.

The XPRT, by contrast, is a world phone, supporting both CDMA and GSM networks. It also has mobile hotspot capability in Sprint's 3G networks, offering support for up to five Wi-Fi ready devices.

The XPRT runs a new version of Android, the Froyo 2.2, while Titanium runs Android 2.1.

The XPRT also has a larger Lithium-ion battery that the Titanium device -- at 1860 mAh, it offers up to 9 hours of talk time. Titanium's 1820 mAh battery offers up to 4.5 hours of talk time.

Titanium
Motorola Titanium

Sprint said the XPRT device is easily supported by IT managers, with 256-bit AES data encryption and the ability to remotely enable PIN or password lock, password recovery and data wipe on both the phone and SD card in the case of loss or theft.

Both devices support Microsoft Exchange email and Web-based email. Both support Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, though XPRT supports 802.11 b/g/n while Titanium only supports 802.11 b/g.

Both phones also include a 5 megapixel camera with camcorder.

The XPRT is 2.4 x 4.74 x 0.51 inches and weights 5.1 ounces, while the Titanium is slightly thicker and heavier.

Sprint said the XPRT requires an Everything Data plan for $69.99 a month plus a $10 monthly premium data plan. For an added $4.99 a month, Sprint will discount roaming rates on travel in 100 countries.

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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