Like PDAs were in their time, Smartphones are about to enter a golden age and Dell looks set to be part of it with a new Android-based smartphone bearing the nice moniker of Benzine (not Benzene).
The device, which has been named as the Mini 3i, will only be sold in China for now according to a post published in BoyGeniusReport and is part of a wave of so called Ophones which will submerge the Chinese market very soon.
The Dell smartphone will have a 3.5-inch touchscreen capable of displaying 640x360 pixels (a 16:9 screen ratio), a 3-megapixel camera with autofocus and a 8x digital zoom as well as a 30 fps video shooting mode, A-GPS, a microSD slot, multi touch UI and much more.
However, there are no details about whether it will come with WiFi or 3G (this is unlikely since it is launched in China first) and its screen is said to be a 262K model.
Benzine is the first PDA-like device to come from Dell for a couple of years. Dell had a fine family of personal digital assistants called Axim which was Windows Mobile-powered and lasted five years.
Lenovo is already preparing the O1 in China while HTC has the Magic, which is yet another Android-powered mobile phone.
BGR also reports that Motorola is preparing to launch an Android phone as well and so is Sony Ericsson. Our guess is that by next year, Android smartphones will be as ubiquitous as Netbooks.