MANILA, March 26, 2004 (STAR) TXT IN D CITY By Patrick R. Garcia (BIDSHOT WIRELESS SERVICES) - Amid the fanfare and numerous press releases emanating from every electronics brand at the IT world’s famous CeBIT exhibit in Hanover, Germany this week, handset manufacturers once again stood out and showcased another exciting buffet of new products for us cellphone-crazed Pinoys to look forward to this quarter. The quick scan I made of their new product lines points to even more phone features like megapixel digital cameras, fashionable phone designs and longer battery lives, to mention a few.

Yes, just when you thought you had acquired an absolutely excellent cellphone here comes another reason for you to replace it. The upcoming cellphone models still operate on our current GSM and GPRS networks, but now comes EDGE as standard fare. Further enhancements on the very popular imaging function of current mobile phone models will take the lead in the new handsets. Sony Ericsson will unveil its new S700 phone which has an integrated 1.3-megapixel CCD digital camera and a 2.3-inch 262K TFT (thin film transistor) color screen. This tri-band GSM-GPRS phone also features a new swivel-opening design to support all types of functions – whether making a call, writing a text message, browsing the Net or taking a picture. Not to be outdone, a one-megapixel camera phone is now a reality for Nokia. The No. 1 handset manufacturer unveiled its latest smartphone, the 7610, which sports a one-megapixel digital camera. The handset features a 4x digital zoom, a self-timer, Multimedia Messaging Service functionality, e-mail, an Internet browser and Java support. The one-megapixel feature will enable users to take higher quality photos from their phones. The norm for most camera phones in the market right now is around 300,000 pixels. Users can make prints of their photos using the built-in Bluetooth connectivity. Also, the built-in RealOne mobile player enables real-time video streaming on the phone’s 65,000-color screen.

Here are some of the other new phone models consumers should look forward to:

• Nokia 6230. This tri-band unit is a fully loaded upgrade of the popular 6220 model. It’s a compact handset with a video recorder and player, digital VGA camera, active TFT color display, Bluetooth (http://nokia.com/nokia/0,,397,00.html) wireless technology, video streaming and audio, music player for MP3 and AAC files, stereo FM radio, EDGE and GPRS (http://nokia.com/nokia/0,,398,00.html). The shared memory pool is up to 6 MB which is dependent on the quantity of data per item such as notes, e-mail messages, ringtones, images, video clips, MMS and SMS messages, phonebook, Java applications and calendar, although additional memory is available with a MultiMediaCard (MMC).

• Nokia 7200. This Xpress-on textile-covered clam phone is a fashionista’s delight. It comes with a Style Pack that includes coordinated covers, soft pouch, wrist strap and matching wallpapers and screensavers, all in perfect harmony. Enjoy typing 885 characters in a single message on its brilliant 65,536 color TFT display. This EDGE-enabled unit provides you the fun of taking images via its VGA camera or video recorder. The shared memory pool is up to 4 MB which is dependent on the quantity of data per item.

• Nokia 9500 Communicator. Browse the Internet in rich full color, on a wide, easy-to-read screen. Work with office documents – not just letters and memos, but presentations and databases, too. Get them from your corporate network via wireless LAN or fast mobile access. It offers high-capacity built-in memory – 80 MB, plus a memory card slot for even more storage space. A full Qwerty keyboard complements its two 65,536-color displays. This tri-band, EDGE-enabled mobile office even sports an integrated VGA camera and video recorder.

• Sony Ericsson K700. The K700 is equipped with a large high-quality color screen and a VGA camera that also does video. A device with dual fronts, it has an integrated VGA camera with flash and 4X digital zoom, video recording, 32 MB of memory and a 3D gaming engine. Regardless if you fancy jazz or have a penchant for pop, the K700 got what it takes to satisfy you when you tune in to your favorite radio station with its built-in FM radio. Since the K700 is a Bluetooth phone, attaching a Bluetooth headset will give you wireless freedom.

• Sony Ericsson T637. The T637 has an integrated VGA camera with the QuickShare application for taking and sharing pictures. It comes with 32-chord polyphonic ringtones with Music DJ ringtone composer, instant and Multimedia Messaging Service, Bluetooth and Java (J2ME) support. As a bonus, it is one of the few units in the market to have push-to-talk capability.

• Sony Ericsson Z500a. This flip-type handset is Sony Ericsson’s first phone with EDGE technology. It carries an integrated VGA camera and video recorder with push-to-talk capability and shows images on its external 4,096-color display and internal 65,536-color screen.

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Patrick Garcia is the managing director of Bidshot Wireless Services. For comments or suggestions, text your message to 233011 (Globe) or 2430018 (Smart), or e-mail txtcity@yahoo.com.

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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