On Thursday morning, Motorola officially introduced its first Google Android device: the Motorola Cliq. The announcement was made by Motorola's co-CEO Sanjay Jha at the Mobilize 09 conference here in San Francisco, who was later joined by Cole Brodman, T-Mobile's chief technology and information officer, to show off the Cliq.
Long-rumored as the Morrison, the Motorola Cliq will be available from T-Mobile later this fall, just in time for the holidays, but pricing was not revealed during its introduction. T-Mobile will offer the phone in two colors: titanium or winter white, and it will be sold worldwide in 2010 as the Motorola Dext. Unfortunately, Motorola did not unveil the Sholes but did say that it would announce a second Android phone in the coming weeks.
The Cliq measures 4.49 inches tall by 2.28 inches wide by 0.62 inch thick and weighs 5.6 ounces. It features a 3.1-inch HVGA touch screen with a 320x480 pixel resolution and has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard as well as a soft keyboard. It's also equipped with a 3.5 millimeter headphone jack.
The phone will run Android 1.5 Cupcake and offer access to Google's various services, including Google Maps with Street View, Google Voice Search, Picasa, and GTalk. The smartphone supports a number e-mail clients, such as Yahoo, Windows Live, and other POP3 and IMAP services, and syncs with Microsoft Exchange, including calendar. The QuickOffice Suite is also onboard for document viewing, CNET News reports.
It was also reported, just like HTC did with its Sense UI, Motorola has created several new widgets for the Android desktop. Most focus on aggregating your social networks, RSS feeds, and messages directly on the desktop. This creates a live home screen that is automatically updated, which can is faster than opening up individual applications.
The featured widget is Happenings which collects the latest updates from Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, and more. Other widgets allow you to get live feeds for weather, sports, and entertainment.
Motorola also has squeezed in new shortcuts for the dialer and contacts applications. These new buttons are squeezed in at the bottom of the home screen on both sides of the regular app drawer.
If you use social networking sites, MotoBlur was made for you. Users enter their account information once during the initial phone setup and then never have to log in again. Facebook, Twitter, and Myspace are directly connected to many of the phone's core functions. This provides a much more detailed contacts application than what is currently offered on the G1 or the MyTouch 3G.
Android currently provides the ability to sync your phone contacts with a Google account, but Motorola takes it to the next level by allowing your to sync your contacts with all of your social networks. Each contact will sync automatically with the latest profile pics, status updates, and Tweets. Now you can keep track of what your friends are doing across multiple social networks in a single screen. The incoming call display will take full advantage of this information, which allows you to preview your friends' mood and status updates before answering a call, CNET News reports.
It was also reported, one can customize the home screen and remove widgets, so we'll hold off on verdict until we get the phone in for review. Also, pricing will be a huge factor. T-Mobile and Motorola has not announced pricing, but Engadget Mobile grabbed a screen shot of the carrier's Web site that listed the Motorola Cliq for free with a two-year contract or $399.99 without an agreement. This, of course, has since been pulled down but if true, it could be an enticing offer for many.
Surely, we'll hear more news in the coming weeks but in the meantime, check out our hands-on photo gallery of the Motorola Cliq to get a closer look at the device and to get our first impressions of the smartphone. Also, check this space on Friday morning, to see our First Look video, CNET News reports.
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