Mobile World Congress round-up: Day two

A real Android flavour on day two in Barcelona, as HTC and LG confirm new smartphones for release in Australia.

HTC's Desire smartphone was the highlight of day two in Barcelona.

HTC's Desire smartphone was the highlight of day two in Barcelona.

Hola! On day two of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, we managed to go from cursing our mediocre Internet to praising Orange Spain for its handy wireless broadband. We were also treated to a number of new Android smartphones, including two that are confirmed for an Australian release in the not too distant future.

First, we met with LG Australia’s Nathan Dunn and discussed the roadmap for Australia in 2010. Though he was only able to reveal two handsets — the LG Mini (GD880) and the Android-based GT540 — both are interesting devices, one running LG’s own operating system and the other Google’s Android platform.

Our initial impressions of these phones were mixed — the GT540 seemed quite sluggish during general use, while the Mini has a very stylish and distinctive design but question marks remain about the user friendliness of LG’s proprietary interface. These were very early preproduction models though, so we won’t have a definitive answer until we get our hands on a final production model — April or May for the Mini and “later in the year” for the GT540.

Google’s Android OS also stole the limelight at HTC’s unveiling of three new smartphones — the HTC HD Mini, Desire and Legend. Of these three new devices, the HD Mini runs Windows Mobile 6.5 (and is basically a smaller version of the HD2), while the Desire and the Legend are Android phones.

Aussies will be pleased to know that the HTC Desire will be launched locally in April, and is initially exclusive to Telstra for three months. It represents something of a milestone, as it’s the first Android smartphone that will be sold through Telstra, Australia’s largest telco.

Day three should see some Australian-specific news regarding Microsoft’s new Windows Phone 7 Series platform, plus we’ll get a closer look at the new Windows mobile user interface.

This day two update was brought to you by the friendly folks at Orange Spain.

Ross Catanzariti travelled to Mobile World Congress 2010 as a guest of Samsung.

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

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