November 13, 2006

New Cingular G3 Phones Leapfrog the Competition

Samsung BlackjackWe do a lot of work with Microsoft Windows Smartphones, so we have anxiously been awaiting the next generation of phones. Verizon has been the clear leader in the US, offering the Palm 700W, the Motorola Q, & the HTC XV6700. Those of us with Cingular contracts have suffered from phone envy for a long time.

According to our friends over at MS Mobiles, the situation changes Thursday, the 16th of November. Cingular is set to ship 2 new smartphones:

  • The Samsung Blackjack is a Q killer. It offers G3 HSDPA broadband speeds, which are more than double the speeds of Verizon’s “high-speed” broadband. It is also a quad-band phone, making it well suited for world travelers.
  • The HTC Hermes, aka Cingular 8525 is the latest version of its popular pocket PC phone, which offers full touch screen PDA functionality. It is similar to the Verizon XV6700, but like the Blackjack, the 8525 offers HSDPA broadband. The 8525 also has a 2 megapixel camera and 802.11 support.

Both of these have great multimedia capabilities, such as streaming audio and video, but they really shine as business tools. If you have Microsoft Exchange 2003, these phones are a must-have. In Exchange 2003, Microsoft beefed up its wireless activesync. With a Windows-based phone and an accessible Exchange 2003 web access server, you can synchronize e-mail, contacts and calendars over the cellular network. With Exchange SP2, Exchange can push data to your phone, but this is a huge battery drain. The better option is to set your phone to synchronize every 5-15 minutes. Exchange combines with a Windows Smartphone blows away the capabilities of blackberrys and you don’t need any extra software to roll this out to your entire company.

I’m going to order the Blackjack as soon as it is released on Thursday, and hope to have a real-world review up soon.

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