T-Mobile unveils new Android-based phone from Samsung

T-Mobile will introduce the Samsung Behold II mobile phone, Samsung's first venture based on the Google Android OS.

T-Mobile has a new partner in its plan to take over the world with Android. T-Mobile has announced plans to introduce the Samsung Behold II mobile phone, Samsung's first venture based on the Google Android OS.

The original Samsung Behold delivered an innovative combination of features and received pretty solid reviews when it was released through T-Mobile around the 2008 holiday season. It held a unique place among mobile devices in that it provided many of the features found in smart phones without actually being a smart phone.

Like its predecessor and the upcoming HTC Pure from AT&T, the Behold II has a 5 megapixel camera with autofocus capabilities. It sports a 3.2 inch touch screen, and up to 16Gb of storage space. The Behold II has built-in Google Maps, Google Search, and Gmail compliments of the Google Android OS, but also provides access to sync with Microsoft Exchange email.

The Behold II also uses the next-generation of the TouchWiz interface Samsung introduced on the original Behold. The Behold II interface is not as innovative or original as the MotoBlur interface developed by Motorola for its Android-based Cliq handset (also available through T-Mobile), but it is pretty cool in its own way.

The main screen displays a 3-dimensional cube which is used to launch commonly used applications. The cube comes pre-programmed with shortcuts to music, photos, Youtube, videos, the Web, and MP3 music downloads from Amazon.com. It also provides users three workspaces they can fill by dragging and dropping the tools and widgets they want to use.

Sprint is jumping on the Android bandwagon, and rumors suggest that Verizon may not be far behind. T-Mobile is definitely blazing the trail though having embraced Android the longest, and rolling out a steadily growing portfolio of devices based on Google Android. That strategy may be slowly building momentum for the mobile service provider to stay in the game and remain a solid contender.

T-Mobile is a distant fourth in the mobile service provider market for the United States, but recent reports suggest it may have visions of grandeur and an eye on perhaps swallowing up Sprint, the third-place competitor.

T-Mobile has not announced pricing or availability for the Samsung Behold II yet, other than a vague suggestion that it would be available for the holidays.

Tony Bradley is an information security and unified communications expert with more than a decade of enterprise IT experience. He tweets as @PCSecurityNews and provides tips, advice and reviews on information security and unified communications technologies on his site at tonybradley.com.

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