Sierra Wireless Announces Windows Powered Smart Phone

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Sierra Wireless has just announced the Voq line of smart phones, which will be based on Microsoft Windows Mobile for Smartphone. These will feature both a phone keypad and unique flip-open QWERTY thumbpad.

The Voq line will use a 200 MHz Intel PXA262 Xscale processor. It will include 32MB of RAM, of which 16MB will be available to the user to run applications. It will also have 48MB of Flash memory, of which 20 MB available to store data and software.

Like all handsets running this operating system, the Voq line will have a 220 by 176 pixel screen and a joystick for user input, not a touch screen. It will have an SD/MMC slot for removable memory cards.

Users will be able to access email and the Web, send instant messages, make phone calls, play games, and run other types of applications.

These will be tri-band world phones, supporting global GSM voice networks and GPRS data networks.

“Sierra Wireless is in a great position to succeed in the Smartphone market, from their strong background in Wireless Data to their established relationships with wireless carriers,” said Roberta Wiggins, Director, Wireless and Mobile Services, The Yankee Group. “Our research points to an upcoming spike in the adoption of Smartphones and Voq’s key features including the flip-open QWERTY thumbpad, make it a formidable offering in this market space.”

Sierra Wireless plans to have its first smart phones on the market by the middle of next year. The company has an existing global network of wireless operators and corporate technology channels and expects to take Voq to market under co-branding arrangements with some of these channels. Voq hardware and software products will be in network operator and end user testing programs in Europe and North America through Q1 of 2004.

It is not known at this time what these smart phones will cost.

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