Despite industry predictions of a single Android smartphone announcement, Sprint and Motorola pulled a pair of phones out of their collective pockets at a New York City press conference on Thursday afternoon. The Photon 4G, a phone somewhat similar to AT&T’s Atrix 4G, is geared to both businesses and well-heeled consumers, whereas the Verizon Droid X2-like Triumph is designed for pre-paid use on Sprint’s Virgin Mobile USA Network.
In a long-term relationship rekindled by Android OS, Sprint plans to bring ten Motorola-built smartphones and tablets to market by the end of this year, said Sprint CEO Dan Hesse, speaking at the press conference,
Industry buzz over Sprint’s possible plans with Motorola — reported by Brighthand on Wednesday — turned out to be rather reliable, except that the Photon 4G and Triumph have been reflected in two separate rumors.
Photon 4G: Car dock, but no laptop dock
The Android 2.3-enabled Photon 4G is indeed similar to AT&T’s Atrix 4G, except that it will be optionally available with different dock stations. Both phones are based on components that include a dual-core NVidia Tegra 2 processor and a high resolution qHD touchscreen, for example.
Yet in an interview with Brighthand at the event, Joel Kingsbury, Motorola’s senior product marketing manager, Global Marketing,?pointed to other key differentiators. Although both phones use gorilla glass in their screens, Sprint has added a two-layer coating to its 4.3-inch display to cut down on glare and increase brightness. Also, Sprint’s Photon comes with an 8 megapixel (mp) camera, in contrast to the Atrix’s 5 mp camera.
Both phones include Webtop software, for use with docks, to make functionality more like that of a full-fledged PC. Both are optionally available with HD/desktop docks, but Sprint has added a kickstand to the HD dock.
Unlike AT&T, Sprint is not offering a laptop dock. Instead, Sprint’s other dock option will be a car dock outfitted with turn-by-turn navigation.
Triumph: High-end feature set for prepaid phone
High-end features of the Triumph include front- and rear-facing cameras, for videoconferencing,and HDMI out, for showing videos from the phone on a large display at resolution of up to 720p. Specs also include a 4.1-inch WVGA touchscreen.
Although the Triumph looks rather similar to Verizon’s Droid X2, the Triumph uses a single-core processor in contrast to the X2’s dual-core processor, according to Ogg.
Both phones will ship this summer, Ogg said. Sprint has not yet announced information about either calling plans or phone pricing.
Stay tuned to Brighthand for more detailed information in a First Look at these two new Android OS phones from Sprint and Motorola.