The age of touch-and-type smartphones is here

Inspite of the popularity of pure touchscreen slabs since the coming of the iPhone, the QWERTY candybar form factor has proven that it has its very loyal share of fans and users. All over the world, QWERTY candybars are selling like hotcake, and it doesn’t look like the form factor is fading away for a long time.

Apparently aware of this trend, the manufacturers have decided to ride the wave and are throwing out a slew of hybrid devices that incorporate both a hardware QWERTY keyboard and a touchscreen in a candybar form. We shall borrow a term to call them from Nokia – Touch-and-Type.

Behold the Touch-and-Type entrants –

Nokia E6

    The age of touch-and-type smartphones is here 1

  • 640 x 480 pixel, 2.46 inch, Gorilla glass TFT capacitive touchscreen
  • Symbian Anna on a 600 MHz ARM 11 processor, with 2D/3D Graphics HardWare Accelerator
  • 8 megapixel, full focus camera, with dual-LED flash
  • 720p@25fps video recording
  • 8 GB internal storage, microSD slot, and USB On-the-go support
  • 1500 mAh battery
  • The E6 is being expected before the end of June 2011

Samsung Galaxy Pro B7510

    The age of touch-and-type smartphones is here 2

  • 320 x 240 pixel, 2.8 inch, TFT capacitive touchscreen
  • Android OS, v2.2 (Froyo) on a 800 MHz processor
  • 3.2 megapixel autofocus camera
  • QVGA@30fps video recording
  • 512 MB internal storage, plus microSD slot
  • 1350 mAh battery
  • The Galaxy Pro has been available since April 2011, and is already in the Nigerian market

BlackBerry Bold Touch 9900/9930

    The age of touch-and-type smartphones is here 3

  • 640 x 480 pixel, 2.8 inch, TFT capacitive touchscreen
  • BlackBerry 7 on a 1.2GHz processor
  • 5 megapixel camera with autofocus & LED flash
  • 720p video recording
  • 8 GB internal storage, plus microSD slot
  • 1230 mAh battery
  • The 9900/9930 is being expected before the end of June 2011
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So, we have a touch-and-type smartphone represented on Symbian, Android and Blackberry, so for you QWERTY candybar folks, you have options. In addition, the Motorola DROID PRO XT610, another Android messenger, has been around since November 2010, but that is one handset that hasn’t been seen in many markets.

If you had to pick one of the above, which one would it be, and what would your criteria be?

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0 thoughts on “The age of touch-and-type smartphones is here

  • May 4, 2011 at 11:00 am
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    You missed the HTC CHACHA facebook phone. It’s a touch & type device worth talking about.

  • May 4, 2011 at 11:12 am
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    I look forward to buying the Galaxy Pro this week and put it through it’s paces. I will also be bringing you my impressions of the phone.

    To be honest, I have my reservations about the combo of the keyboard and touch screen, but l will have to wait and see how it fares on the Galaxy Pro.

  • May 4, 2011 at 12:09 pm
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    ultimately d determining factor for me will be d price..but i think i’ll prefer nokia e6…d familiar nokia and symbian combo..tested and trusted!

    P.S: Dayo pls tell Me d market price as long as you get the galaxy pro….

  • May 4, 2011 at 12:16 pm
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    Since I used the P1, my love for this form factor has grown, though I still prefer the side-slider smartphones. I am looking forward to acquiring the Galaxy Pro immediately it is released here.
    The Bold Touch? Maybe, in December when the price is reasonable.

  • May 4, 2011 at 12:46 pm
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    yeah,dayo you took it right out of my thoughts, i will prefer the galaxy pro for a breath of fresh air.I ForeSee operational conflicts btw the touch&type

  • May 4, 2011 at 3:32 pm
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    Am sure so many things will conflict and many command functions will be duplicated with this new form factor.

    I use the nokia C6 which is a touchscreen phone with side sliding qwerty keyboard. I tell you, sometimes i get confused as to which section (touch or keyboard) i should use to initiate a command.

  • May 4, 2011 at 5:10 pm
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    After watching the unboxing video/ mini review on Tracy and Matt’s blog, I think I will skip models of this form factor with landscape screen. The portrait screen orientation of Motorola Pro and Droid Pro appeal more to me.

  • May 4, 2011 at 7:39 pm
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    @Shayman, the market price for the pro is around 40k.

    @belushi, I am not so sure I want this phone anymore o. Somethings missing that I can’t live with. I just might opt for something else. Really sorry for being a little jumpy.

  • May 5, 2011 at 2:26 am
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    @shayman, there’s no LED flash for the meagre 3 megapixel camera, the screen washes out under direct sunlight due to the relatively low resolution, apps incompatibility also due to the resolution and landscape mode.

  • May 6, 2011 at 12:15 pm
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    You guys should implement that theme on Fring, like the ShazamID app where the Shazam theme is automatically activated while the Shazam app is open and then deactivates automatically when the user leaves the app.

  • May 6, 2011 at 12:16 pm
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    I was referring to the comment that this is going to come out for OTHER phones in the near future. Did you even watch the video?

  • May 7, 2011 at 5:27 pm
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    Samsung Galaxy Pro B7510
    I am not convinced that Android is designed for this form factor.
    I am very sure the battery will suck
    Camera not accepted. Min standard now is 5MP/720P/HD
    It will certainly be the cheapest, u get what u pay for.

    BlackBerry Bold Touch 9900/9930
    This would have been the best, if not for the 1230 Battery. Unless RIM has done some miracle down there. We dont want to run out of juice too soon.
    I am sure it will be over priced.
    But we must praise RIM for the 1.2GHZ and 768MB RAM cramped into this phone.

    Nokia E6
    Gorilla glass, 8MP HD cam, USB ON the GO with long battery life.
    The only thing I don’t like about the phone is that I would have preferred a bigger screen.
    It wont make any sense to rant about Nokia 600mhz and 256Ram, we know that is how they do business.

    The Nokia E6 will give the best value for your money, and we are sure the processor and Ram is enough for the form factor.

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