Sprint Unveils 3-D Smartphone, 7-Inch Tablet
CREDIT: Sprint. The HTC EVO 3D smartphone.
ORLANDO – Sprint unveiled on Tuesday (March 22) at the CTIA Wireless conference two new products manufactured by HTC: a smartphone that displays 3-D content without the need for glasses and a 7-inch Android tablet that comes with a pen accessory.
The HTC EVO 3D device looks very similar to the EVO 4G on Sprint, at least at first glance. Inside, however, much as changed. The phone features the latest Snapdragon processor (dual-core 1.2GHz) and the latest version of Android (2.3 Gingerbread).
Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said during the unveiling that the EVO 3D has such powerful hardware that it "performs like a PC."
But the screen is the most exciting part, which comes with a 4.3-inch qHD touchscreen that can display 3-D content without the need for glasses. It can also seamlessly switch between 3-D and 2-D depending on what the user is viewing.
The focus on 3-D is evident throughout the phone. There are two 5 megapixel cameras on the back of the device to take 3-D pictures, which can be viewed on the device or on a 3-D-capable TV. There is also the option to hook the HTC EVO 3D up to a TV with an MHL connection and view 3-D movies housed in the phone up on the TV screen.
The HTC View 4G, the 7-inch tablet announced at the same time, doesn't have 3-D capabilities, but it has plenty of features to make it interesting. The first is a pen accessory that allows users to draw and write directly on the screen. Support for the pen is built into the device, so there are many options for how to use it, from stroke styles to even colors.
In addition, the HTC View 4G has a definite focus on note-taking. The user can press a record button while taking notes and the tablet will record audio. When viewing notes later, simply tapping on a word will take the user directly to the part of the audio recording where that word was written. A similar feature for the drawing app also allows the artist to rewind to any point in the drawing process.
The HTC tablet has a 1.5GHz processor and 4G connectivity , as the name implies. But Sprint said it will come with Android 2.3 Gingerbread and update to Android 3.0 Honeycomb --the version of Android made specifically for tablets -- sometime in the future. This puts the View 4G behind several other tablets already, even though a custom HTC Sense interface has made Android 2.3 more tablet-friendly.
Both the tablet and the phone will come with the ability to create a mobile hotspot for up to eight other Wi-Fi-enabled devices.
Sprint does not have pricing or release dates for either device yet. In fact, according to a spokesperson at the unveiling, the company isn't even sure if the HTC View 4G will come bundled with the pen accessory or if that will be sold separately.
Both devices are expected sometime in summer 2011.