Print 8 comment(s) - last by The Raven.. on Oct 9 at 1:25 AM

Samsung Transform

Sanyo Zio  (Source:

LG Optimus S
$50 will soon buy a Froyo-touting smartphone

On the heels of Motorola's announcement of seven upcoming, low- to mid-level Android devices -- none of which are slated for Sprint -- the nation's third-largest carrier is responding with three new Android devices of its own, ranging in price from $50 to $150.

Engadget reports that the Samsung Transform and the Sanyo Zio will be available from Sprint this week -- October 10, to be exact -- while the LG Optimus S is set to launch later this month.

The Transform is a smaller, lower-end version of the full-QWERTY Epic 4G (Sprint's Samsung Galaxy S variant). The Transform's processor is a bit weaker than its big brother's (800 MHz vs. 1 GHz), its screen is smaller (3.5" vs. 4"), it runs a vanilla version of Android 2.1 (no TouchWiz), and it's not being touted as the "Transform 4G," so don't expect to be able to connect to Sprint's burgeoning WiMAX network. The device is a full $100 cheaper than the Epic, and "Transformers" won't be required to pay the much-maligned $10 4G surcharge Sprint collects from EVO and Epic users. 

The Sanyo Zio (pronounced ZEE-O) has been called "a remarkably good phone" by AndroidCentral, especially considering its $100 price point (after $100 mail-in rebate). The Zio is a light, slab-style phone with a 3.5" WVGA touchscreen, a trackball for added OS navigation, and a 3.2-megapixel camera. It has been seen running Android 2.1.

Finally, excitement is building for the low-end LG Optimus S because it is perhaps the cheapest device soon-to-be on the market ($50 after $100 mail-in) that is rocking Android 2.2 "Froyo" out of the box. The Optimus S sports a 3.2" touchscreen, 3.2-megapixel camera, and has Mobile Hotspot capabilities for up to five devices (sharing its 3G connection). It is set to launch on Halloween.

Other than price and hardware, the three devices will ship with the all new Sprint ID -- a pre-packaged combo of apps, themes, and settings designed for different users that you can install from Sprint's Android market with one click.

The Android OS, which has already taken a dominant stance in the smartphone market, is making a populist appeal to the masses of feature phone users who have been on the fence because of price concerns. It will be interesting to see how the glut of new Android phones fares against the upcoming Windows Phone 7 devices in the hotly contested holiday season.

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real estate
By jaericho on 10/7/2010 9:47:12 AM , Rating: 2
How much more screen real estate could there be if they left out "SPRINT" and "SAMSUNG" and "LG" from the top and bottom of the phones?

RE: real estate
By bigbrent88 on 10/7/2010 9:54:53 AM , Rating: 2
Smaller phones have to pack more circuitry into a smaller and fatter form factor. They cut costs with the smaller screen, but I don't think they can make a smaller form factor smartphone with current fabs. To sex up the phone, designers extend that glass look over the front, if for anything to look a little more iPhone

RE: real estate
By The Raven on 10/7/2010 11:30:40 AM , Rating: 2
I think it is dead space so their thinking is probably more "why not?" than anything. They really should just put branding on the back like Apple. I mean especially for the carrier. Is it not enough that I have to see the name on my bill?

RE: real estate
By amanojaku on 10/7/2010 5:40:23 PM , Rating: 2
At some point in recent history some Apple-favorable posters (you know who you are) complained about about "nasty comments" from the Windows-favorable community. The gist was "Windows' people only say bad things about Apple and NEVER say good things." So I just want the record to show the following is a quote PRAISING Apple from a person who historically says "nasty" things.
They really should just put branding on the back like Apple.
I agree with The Raven: no one is as good at (not?) placing labels as Apple.

RE: real estate
By The Raven on 10/9/2010 1:25:58 AM , Rating: 2
Well it is true. In fact why else would you put the logo on there if not to advertise. Well if you own the phone and subscribe to the service then why does the guy looking at the front of it all the time need to see those labels?

Put it on the outside and advertise to those around you.
Of course in that case, your hand would probably cover it up, but then you might "be holding it wrong".

And since you mention it, there are other things that I think Apple has done well. Most of their current machines are either visually attractive or nice and toned down (not pretty or ugly), the magic pad looks nice (but I would like a corded version, and the name is as creative as iMovie, iTunes, etc.) and I'm sure I'm forgetting others.

And for the record, I don't say "nasty" things about Apple. I'm just critical of them and the majority of their users.

I don't like seeing people give up freedom (or their money for that matter) for a shiny object. And I detest the arrogance of Jobs and his followers.

Apple has their place and that is fine. And this is America, you can buy whatever you want. But also in America, I can feel free to be critical of whoever I want and make it known ;-)

Oh and if you want Tony or Pirks to see this just post "APPLE SUCKS" and they'll come running.

800mhz what?
By VisionxOrb on 10/7/2010 2:15:06 PM , Rating: 2
What exactly is the 800mhz processor in the Transform? is it cortex A8 like an A4? an under clocked hummingbird with the powervr 540 gpu or some old ARM11 trash like the Moment's cpu.

RE: 800mhz what?
By protosv on 10/7/2010 6:05:41 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, this will matter to me. As a current Moment owner, I never cease to be amazed at how sluggish my phone is, even for simple things like loading text messaging and switching between the browser, google talk and the phone dialer apps. Especially when I compared it to the Epic in terms of sheer UI responsiveness, the moment looked positively geriatric.

By inperfectdarkness on 10/7/2010 12:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
$50 for a transform sounds pretty good to me. if the pricing would drop to ~$100/month for 2 phones, unlimited EVERYTHING--i'd upgrade this instant.

"This is about the Internet.  Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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