Today at CTIA in Las Vegas, HTC officially announced the HTC Snap smartphone. The Snap marks the first messenger style device from HTC since the Dash (also known as Excalibur). This new smartphone features new software by HTC called “Inner Circle” that aims to automatically prioritize email from the most important people in your life. At this time, we don’t have too much information on how this software works. We are watching for more information and will keep you posted as we find out more.
The HTC Snap features a 528Mhz processor, 256MB ROM / 192MB RAM, a 2.4 inch QVGA screen (320×240), a 2.0 megapixel camera, Jog ball, GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, and with a 1500 mAh battery that claims up to 8 hours of talk time or 15.8 days on standby. There will be a 3G version available for Europe and North America. The European version is expected to be available during the second quarter of 2009, with the North American version hitting the streets in the summer.
There’s still a lot of information that we don’t know at this time. I have spent some time looking at the attached pictures, and I noticed a couple of interesting things. 1) there’s a messenger key on the keyboard – I’m not sure if this means it will be pre-loaded with MSN Messenger, or if it’s meant to launch a different application. It seems to indicate that HTC is serious about making this a killer messenger device.
2) The power button has been moved to the End key. Typically HTC likes to have their own power button and they use the End key for locking the keypad. Locking has been moved to the Q key. If you look closely around the sides of the device, you may notice that there doesn’t appear to be anything except volume buttons and power jacks. It’s a very clean design.
3) The camera button is a Function key away. So to launch the camera, you need to press the function key, then the messenger button. I’m guessing that HTC has determined that people using this device are not heavy into using the camera. That’s not what I expected, but it’s not a really big deal to me either way.
My initial thoughts on this device is – WOW. HTC has done a really nice job on this device. They’ve spent some time making sure that they built a rock solid, feature rich messenger focused device. I can’t wait until I can get my hands on this device and put it through some paces.
The full press release along with some more pictures can be found after the break.
LAS VEGAS – April 1, 2009 – HTC Corporation today debuted its newest QWERTY smartphone, the HTC Snap™. Designed with a set of features selected to deliver everything customers need without overwhelming them with things they don’t, the HTC Snap makes it easier than ever to stay in contact with life’s most important people.
A recent study conducted by Harris Interactive® and commissioned by HTC* found that 44% of US adults are often overwhelmed by the amount of email they receive, and over half (55%) of US adults prioritize five or fewer people with whom they communicate via email. In response to these issues, HTC’s innovative Inner Circle feature allows HTC Snap users to press a dedicated Inner Circle key to bring emails from a preselected group of people to the top of their inbox, enabling important messages to be acted upon immediately.
“Recognizing that people are being overwhelmed by an avalanche of email, the HTC Snap introduces Inner Circle, an HTC innovation that makes it easy for people to prioritize messages from the most important people in their lives at the press of a button,” said John Wang, Chief Marketing Officer, HTC Corporation. “The HTC Snap represents the latest step in HTC’s mission to create a range of innovative smartphones, each with specific benefits designed to both surprise and delight our customers.”
With a slim, sleek profile designed to fit perfectly in the hand, the HTC Snap measures less than a half-inch thick (12 mm), yet it can deliver up to eight and a half hours of talk time with the standard 1500mAh battery. The full QWERTY keyboard is ergonomically designed with extra-large domed keys and responsive tactile feedback to make typing emails and text messages fast, accurate and comfortable. High-speed 3G HSPA connectivity makes it quick and easy to send pictures to friends, access favorite social networking sites, or download large files while on the go.
The HTC Snap is powerful enough for experienced business users looking for an affordable, straightforward choice for remotely synchronizing email, calendar and contacts with their Microsoft Exchange server. However, the flexible Microsoft Windows Mobile® 6.1 Standard platform allows the HTC Snap to also be simple enough for first-time smartphone users wanting to keep their family life organized.
The HTC Snap is expected to be available in select channels during the second quarter of 2009, rolling out in markets around the world throughout the second half of the year. Additionally, an unlocked version supporting HSDPA at 850/1900MHz for the US market will be made available under the name HTC S522 during the summer.