Orange smart phone promises "3G-type services before 3G"

Microsoft joins in the fanfare
Written by Tony Hallett, Contributor

Microsoft joins in the fanfare

Orange last night launched its SPV smart phone, a device based on Microsoft's Smartphone 2002 operating system and one which it says will allow "3G-type services before 3G". Orange has ordered 200,000 of the devices - made by HTC in Taiwan, the 'no brand' manufacturer that also puts together O2's xda - which it will be hoping to sell over the next year, at a subsidised price of £179 in the UK or E300 in France. It is spending £25m on marketing its smart phones - a cost shared with Microsoft - and has trained over 2,000 distribution staff and 4,000 customer service people so they can explain what exactly it does. Microsoft was clearly also cock-a-hoop at the roll out, which will kick off in earnest on 11 November. Juha Christensen, VP Microsoft Mobile Devices Marketing Group, said: "We've made real the promise of mobile data. Hardware devices will come out to meet all types of customers." Richard Brennan, executive VP OrangeWorld and Brand, said: "This is a great phone and platform for innovation. We are working towards beating our targets of having a quarter of our revenue come from data services by 2005." The tri-band SPV - which stands for sound, pictures and voice - features a 64,000 colour screen, an SD card slot, 256MB of memory at launch with 1GB to come next year, and the ability to sync data with Orange or corporate networks either over the air or via desktop synching. It allows all major types of messaging and upgrades and downloading over the air and automatically. On top of voice and SMS and MMS costs, surfing costs a flat £6 per month.
Editorial standards