Samsung unveils its first Android phone

Samsung released its first handset based on Google's Android platform, the I7500. O2 Germany will launch the phone in June.

The candybar handset will have tri-band 7.2 Mbps HSDPA (in the 900 MHz, 1700 MHz and 2100 MHz bands), WiFi, a 3.2-inch AMOLED touchscreen display, a 5-megapixel camera and 8GB of internal storage (with a microSD slot capable of holding up to an additional 32GB). It also has Bluetooth 2.0, GPS and a 3.5 mm headset jack. The phone does not have a physical keyboard.

The phone will launch "in major European countries" in June, which matches what Dr. Hong Won-pyo , Samsung's executive vice president of global product strategy for mobile phones, said at the end of the CTIA Wireless 2009 show in Las Vegas.  At the time, Hong said U.S. customers would see two very distinct Android phones from Samsung, likely Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile USA. Since the I7500 supports 1700 MHz HSPA, which T-Mobile uses, it is possible that the phone could pop up on T-Mobile USA shelves (though Samsung did not announce anything related to the I7500 in the United States).

With the introduction of the I7500, there are now two handset makers currently selling Android phones. HTC has unveiled both the G1 and the Magic, and plans on releasing at least two more Android handsets by the end of the year. LG Electronics and Motorola have also indicated their intentions to release Android phones this year, as have smaller firms such as Acer and Huawei.

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