Android smartphone from Australia
The Australian online vendor Kogan Technologies plans to launch a budget smartphone with Google's Android open source operating system at the beginning of 2009. The Kogan Agora will be available in two different configurations at $299 and $399 Australian, which corresponds to 153 and 204 euros or £132 and £176 at the current exchange rate. Customs duties and import sales tax will be added when importing the phone to Europe. Shipment to Europe costs about $45 Australian (about 23 euros or £20).
Both versions have a 624 MHz CPU, Bluetooth 2.0+EDR (without A2DP), and a 2.5 inch touch screen capable of displaying 320 × 240 pixels at a colour depth of 16 bits. The backlit QWERTY keyboard is designed to make text inputs easier. The relatively meagre 256 MBytes of on-board memory can be expanded, fairly economically, with microSD cards. The HSDPA-compliant device is said to offer up to 400 minutes of talk time and 300 hours of standby time. Phone calls can be made via all the usual GSM networks. The UMTS portion uses the bands around 850, 900 and 2100 MHz.
The Agora Pro version also includes a 2 megapixel camera, WLAN (802.11b/g) connectivity and a GPS receiver. Both models weigh (130 gms) and measure (108 mm × 64 mm × 15 mm).
Like the T-Mobile G1, the Kogan phones come with Google's Search, Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps, Google Talk and Google Calendar applications. Kogan plans to start shipping on 29th January and is already taking pre-orders. Whether the devices will be launched on the European market remains to be seen.