The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G has just debuted. This consumer-oriented smartphone is more powerful than its predecessors that bore the same name and is the first with a touchscreen, though it retains the landscape-oriented keyboard that has been a hallmark of this series.
The Sidekick line debuted early in the last decade, and were some of the first models that could deserve the name “smartphone”. However, time passed them by, and T-Mobile pulled the plug on this series last year. This new model is a near total revamp, and starting with the operating system — the Sidekick 4G is the first to run Google’s Android OS.
It has a 3.5-inch WVGA (800 x 480) capacitive touchscreen that flips up to reveal its large keyboard. Next to this is a small trackpad and the standard collection of control buttons. There’s even a front-facing camera for video chatting.
The Sidekick 4G runs Android OS 2.2 (Froyo) on a 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor, and comes with an extensive suite of communication, entertainment, and productivity software, from a powerful web browser to a GPS navigation app. It marks the debut of Sidekick Group Text, which lets users send a single SMS text to a group of users, and have that group carry on a text-based conversation.
This smartphone supports T-Mobile’s HSPA+ cellular-wireless network, and have Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0, GPS receiver, and DLNA. Other features are going to include a 3-megapixel rear-facing camera and a microSD memory card slot.
It sells for $100 after a $50 mail-in rebate and with a two-year service contract. When purchased without a contract, this smartphone costs $380.