China Mobile will launch the HTC Magic next month, thereby becoming the first Chinese operator to launch a handset based on Google's mobile platform.
According to various news reports, it appears the phone combines software tweaks from both HTC and China Mobile.
According to an HTC official quoted by IDG News Service, the phone features a Chinese-language version of Android developed by HTC. The Wall Street Journal reported that the phone will run a customized version of Android called Open Mobile System developed by China Mobile, and that the operator will call its Android phones oPhones to reflect the customized platform.
HTC announced the Magic in February, and versions of the device are selling in Europe and likely the United States.
HTC will beat Huawei to market in China with Android; Huawei will reportedly offer an Android phone in China in the third quarter. HTC is hoping that the Android model will help double its sales in China from 800,000 units last year.
The company also plans on boosting global shipments by 10%, up from 12 million units last year, HTC CEO Peter Chou said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
Chou said the smartphone maker may also offer Android phones through China Telecom and China Unicom. Phones running on Android have reportedly been sold in China, but none have been legally offered through an operator before.
AT&T Mobility meanwhile will launch multiple an HTC-made phone, dubbed Lancaster, later this year, according to leaked slides on the blog Engadget.
Lancaster has 850/1900 MHz HSPA support, a full Qwerty keyboard, 3-megapixel camera and a “unique HTC social messaging user interface.”
The blog said the phone is expected to be available on August 3, but that may change. HTC has repeatedly said it will unveil at least two more Android phones this year, in addition to the already released Magic.
- see this WSJ article (sub. Req.)
- see this article
- see this Engadget post