Motorola Introduces Cliq, Its First Android Smartphone

US Phone manufacturer Motorola has unveiled the Cliq, the first of a series of Android phones in the US that the company plans to launch; the phone will be known as the Dext when it goes on sale in the UK next month.

The phone is set to appear exclusively on Orange's network in the UK and will cost as little as £25 per month when customers enroll on a two year contract. 18 months contracts will be offered for £30 a month.

The Dext (probably an allusion to the dexterity you will need to manipulate the keyboard) features a 3.1-inch capacitive touchscreen display which shows 320x480 pixels (a classic 3:2 screen ratio), the same as the iPhone.

The rest of the spec list is pretty much standard. There's a slide out keyboard with a multidirectional pad, HSDPA, WiFi, GPS, a 5-megapixel camera with autofocus and flash, accelerometer, a microSD memory slot and a 3.5mm earphone plug. No details about internal storage capacity.

Motorola has chosen to run the Dext on Google's Android platform (version 1.5) with a customised user interface called the Motoblur although we're not sure about whether having a Qualcomm MSM7201a chipset (the same as the G1) is a wise choice.

It will therefore come with the whole array of social networking features like Google Tools as well as Facebook, Photobucket, Myspace and Twitter Integeration.

Sanjay Jha, chief executive of Motorola Mobile Devices, told the press that "Motorola CLIQ with MOTOBLUR differentiates the Android experience for consumers by being the only smartphone that automatically syncs conversations, contacts and content, and delivers a solution that’s instinctive, social and smart."

Our Comments

The phone is the most "un-motorola" model we've seen for a long time. The manufacturer really needed the Cliq to revive hopes of recovery. One thing is sure, keyboard devices are back in business and this one looks extremely promising. We'll try to get more details next week.

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