More companies readied their Android phones for release this week, while others were hard at work figuring out how to use the operating system in non-phone devices.
Handset maker HTC revealed that it’s helping AT&T get ready to join the Android team with a new phone. The HTC Lancaster is a slider phone that looks a lot like the G1 that HTC made for T-Mobile but with a Windows Mobile bent: HTC is including on the Lancaster a special Android social messaging interface for consumers. It’s expected to hit stores in August.
Motorola is also joining the Android party with the oddly named Motorola Heron phone. It’s a candy bar form with a sliding keyboard and a small screen that doesn’t appear to handle touch. In fact, so far we can’t see anything special about the Heron other than the fact that it will be Motorola’s first Android phone.
The FCC approved the Samsung i7500, the Android phone made by the electronics giant Samsung, this week. It appears the i7500 is destined for T-Mobile and features a large touchscreen sans keyboard like the HTC Magic that will succeed the T-Mobile G1, also later this year.
Finally, netbook maker Acer announced that in addition to an Android phone, it will also produce netbooks running Android starting in the third quarter of 2009. Acer is the largest company to commit to an Android netbook so far, and as one of the biggest sellers of notebooks, could move quite a few of them. Of particular interest was Acer’s claim that “the majority of Acer Netbooks will come with Android as an alternative operating system to Microsoft’s Windows.”
Acer apparently caught some heat from the boys in Redmond and have clarified that Android netbooks would actually ship with a dual-boot environment with Windows. This is in direct conflict with the earlier statement so no doubt some pressure has been applied by someone.