D-Link goes mobile with unlocked WiFi/GSM phone

D-Link announced a new line of "V-CLICK" dual-mode phones that allow users to switch between cellular and Wi-Fi networks with the click of a button.

When it begins shipping during the first quarter of 2007, the new D-Link V-CLICK line of phones will feature tri-band GSM (900/1800/1900 Mhz) and 802.11 Wi-Fi (2.4Ghz) access.

By sliding a cellular service provider's SIM Smartcard or chip into the V-CLICK phone, the user automatically gains GSM access. Stored phone numbers and address books are also automatically taken into the phone via the SIM Smartcard or chip.

With a simple press of the V-CLICK button, the phone activates or deactivates the Wi-Fi connection that allows users to access websites or an Internet phone service, and enjoy the convenience of reduced communication costs, faster transfer speeds and increased productivity resulting from dual-mode phone access.

D-Link V-CLICK phones boast a sleek, polished black compact form factor (h 4.17", w 1.73", d .75"), with additional colors planned to fit any lifestyle. The V-CLICK phones support Opera Mobile(TM), a mobile browser for logging into Wi-Fi(R) hot spots, web surfing and email functionality on the V-CLICK's two-inch (176x220 pixels) bright color screen.

In addition to operating like regular cell phones that communicate within a nationwide wireless network, D-Link V-CLICK phones will significantly reduce cell phone service costs by switching to the 802.11 wireless mode and connecting to lower-cost Internet telephone services. These services are available by way of well-advertised affordable consumer plans or from a cellular service provider network.

For regular cell phone coverage, the D-Link V-CLICK phones will be "unlocked," allowing users to use their existing SIMs and pre-paid SIMs from traditional GSM cellular service providers anywhere in the world.

By pressing the V-CLICK button, users activate a configurable wireless and SIP profile. Multiple profiles are available that make usage between home and office automatic.

The V-CLICK feature is increasingly valuable as many cities continue to invest in metro 802.11 wireless technology designed to turn entire communities into Wi-Fi(R) zones.

As wireless phones become more complex, they also have become more power-hungry. The V-CLICK phone lets users return to normal cell phone operation for increased battery life and increased standby and talk time.

Standards-based wireless encryption (WEP, WPA and WPA2) built into the V-CLICK phone enables enhanced security of transmission.

Key features of the D-Link V-CLICK phone include:

* Wi-Fi(R) profile roaming for uninterrupted service between wireless zones

* Opera Mobile(TM) browser for hot spot log-in and Web surfing

* Email functionality -- 50 emails can be stored in up to 10 accounts

* Large color screen display with 176 by 220 pixels

* Sleek, compact form factor (height, 4.17", width, 1.73", depth, .75"; weight, 3.32 oz)

* Smart text input

* Talk time -- up to 5 hours GSM, 2 hours 802.11 wireless mode

* Messages -- up to 30 messages can be stored at 459 characters each

* Phonebook -- up to 300 contacts

* Data storage -- up to 24 megabytes for documents, images, music and video files.

* Tasks -- stores up to 100 entries

* Calendar -- up to 100 events, 160 letters per event

* Charging -- 3 hours, first time charge 8 hours

* Compact design with internal antenna

* Power-saving mode for maximum standby and talk time

D-Link V-CLICK phones will be a "pay-as-you-go" device, allowing users to purchase call time from service providers that will load up the phone's SIM card.