LG has launched the GW550, the first of a series of smartphone running Windows Mobile 6.5 and whose form factor seriously reminds us of the Samsung Omnia Pro 7320, the Blackberry Curve or the Nokia E71/E63.
The device, one of three said to be launched imminently, has a 2.4-inch 320x240 pixels display, a full QWERTY keyboard, Quad-band and HSDPA support and a 3-megapixel camera as well as a forward facing one and a 1300mAh battery.
These are the same specifications of the Nokia E71 and less advanced than the E72.
The GW550 is LG's first bar-type smartphone and should be available before the end of the year in Europe, the United States and Asia for what the company calls "early adopter customers". It first appeared in June with the old Windows Mobile 6.1
Users will benefit from an upgraded Internet Explorer mobile browser with a new engine and Adobe Flash lite technology which will allow rich media content to be properly displayed on Windows Mobile 6.5 handsets.
Expect the GW550 to be on sale for around £240 SIM Free, the same as the E71 and to be available on £20 monthly contracts. LG is expected to launch up to 13 Windows Mobile smartphone by the end of 2010, that's roughly one every month.
Simultaneously, LG will beef up its own LG Application store, the equivalent of Apple app store, which will offer "add-ons" for future LG smartphones (although whether these will be cross platforms has not been confirmed). Around 2000 downloadable applications should be available by the end of the year and the store is not yet available for Western Countries.