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Summary:

Apparently, that’s what the HTC Athena will set you back based on this HTC roadmap info tipped to us by Mobility Site. Both of those links will cover the entire HTC product roadmap; there’s several new devices in the works, but I’ll let you browse them […]

Htc_athenaApparently, that’s what the HTC Athena will set you back based on this HTC roadmap info tipped to us by Mobility Site. Both of those links will cover the entire HTC product roadmap; there’s several new devices in the works, but I’ll let you browse them at your leisure. I’m more interested in the reported price point of the Athena at nearly two-grand.

Is there really a market for such a device at that price? Yes, you do get cellular capabilities integrated in and the screen is larger than most Windows Mobile devices of today at 5-inches. You also get the option to attach or detach the keypad, which is a very flat-looking keyboard. There’s no doubt the device is intriguing and a has a nice design. Keep in mind what you’re not going to get for the money:

  • Ability to run full Windows applications since this device will run Windows Mobile, not Windows XP
  • Opportunity to output the display to an external monitor; from what I can see there’s no way to do this

Mobile tech is really all about compromise: we sacrifice features for power or usability for size, etc….that’s just a fact of life. The question is: are you willing to sacrifice $1700 for a device with this feature set? I’m sure there will be a few folks that do and there’s nothing wrong with that, but my hope was that HTC was truly entering the UMPC market with a Windows-based device; based on the Athena, my guess is that this is their entry. Hopefully I’m off-base and we’ll see something else at CES. In fairness to HTC, maybe we shouldn’t be surprised about a high-end Windows Mobile device; HTC WM phones are among the best available on the market today.

  1. pfff, thatsa joke. for that size & money i’d buy an OQO 2/UX & have a real PC.

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  2. Absolutely ridiculous. This is in no way $1K better than a Treo 700w, much less better than the Samsung Q1 you showed off on the vidcast. Crazy…

    Any chance we’re $900-ish off on the price?

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  3. Urm…no. Until this year, I wouldn’t pay $300 for a phone. In a year and a half, I will buy a new phone, and it will probably cost me less than $600.

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  4. OK… it’s gotta work like this: $1700 is the absurb MSRP listing and when it finally hits the retail channels through your phone carriers it’ll be coming in at a more realistic $600 with a $40 or so per month phone plan. Right?
    Cause I, a man who’s been on a holy mission to find a future replacement for his beloved e800 because I’m intent on keeping with 4-inch+ VGA screens and the WM operating system, a man who is standing at the door with cash in hand for a machine like this… I have just hung my head in bitter defeat and frustration on reading that price.

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  5. I agree with author and previous answers. I do not see any reason to give this size of money for this size of device and its features.

    Generally I see such dilema in this way (no respect to the costs):

    Windows Mobile is for mobile. It has to be as small as it’s possible. For me, Samsung i320 is perfect for today. Thiner than MotoQ, even thiner and smaller than the newer i600 and some HTC products.

    For other “not-desktop” purposes, I want to keep at least 7″ UMPC and a fully-operating O/S. Give them more battery times and it will become many more useful soon.

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  6. I wonder who is going to pay that money for a PPC on Steroids.

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  7. I’m with kamikun. Another e800 owner seeking a future PPC phone that doesn’t compromise on screen size and resolution. I bought a Universal way back, but was very unhappy with the smaller screen, so I gave it to my son and went back to my e800 months ago, but of course then had to go back to carrying around a phone too. I think the Athena looks and sounds perfect for me, except for the expected price. Here’s hoping the price will be less!

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