Report: Dell at work on smartphone

A Forbes profile spotlighting Michael Dell and his second go-round as CEO of the technology firm bearing his name speculates that Dell is at work on a smartphone, developing the device in collaboration with Taiwanese hardware maker Quanta Computer. The device, which is said to include video, an MP3 player and Internet access, is reportedly scheduled to debut in early 2008, possibly in conjunction with January's Consumer Electronics Show.

In February Dell hired Ron Garriques, executive VP of Motorola's handset division, to run its entire consumer business, the first indicator the firm was mulling entry into the smartphone market. In mid-August, it acquired ZING Systems, a consumer technology and services company emphasizing always-connected audio and entertainment devices. Dell is offering no official comment on the device, although with $13 billion in cash and equivalents on the balance sheet, Forbes reports it is also exploring acquisition possibilities, Quanta among them.

For more on Dell's smartphone future:
-read this Forbes article