Bharti Airtel will be the India’s first exclusive carrier for the HTC smartphone that will run on Google’s open-source Android operating system, and is likely to be priced at around Rs. 25,000.
The new device is expected to provide tough competition in India to existing smartphone handsets – Apple’s iPhone and Nokia’s N97.
Android is a software platform for mobile devices, including netbooks, based on the Linux operating system and although it is officially administered by a consortium of companies called the Open Handset Alliance.
Update: The HTC Magic in India features India-specific applications, including Hello Tune Manager, Portfolio Manager, Mobshare, In-mobile search and City Search. The handset is priced at Rs. 29,900. The handsets are available in 17 cities: Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Pune, Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Coimbatore, Cochin, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Lucknow, Bhubaneswar and Patna. Airtel offers 100 MB of free data download per month, for 6 months.
From Airtel Press Release, June 23, 2009
- The Android ™ platform opens up an unique opportunity to Airtel customers to customize their device with multiple mobile applications
- Airtel customers can avail many utility based applications such as Portfolio Manager, Hello Tune Manager, Weather Channel, Mobshare, In-mobile search and City Search
- HTC Magic offers cutting edge innovation with 3G capabilities, 3.2-inch HVGA touch screen, and 3.2 mega-pixel camera for an unmatched personalised mobile Web experience
- Airtel customers to get free data download of 100 MB per month for 6 months
- HTC Magic available at Airtel Relationship Centres and authorised HTC resellers across 17 cities
Bharti Airtel, Asia’s leading integrated telecom services provider, and HTC Corporation, a global leader in mobile phone innovation and design, today announced the launch of India’s First Android™-powered mobile phone – The HTC Magic.
Airtel has been a frontrunner in bringing innovative and cutting edge technology to its customers. The Android™ powered HTC Magic opens new arena for customers and the developer community to interact in order to bring new applications to Android-based phones. The introduction of the Android™ platform in India is a step in this direction where innovation, development and deployment of mobile applications are encouraged in an ‘open ecosystem’. The Android™ platform not only gives Airtel a faster go to market capability but also helps to provide more rich & varied service offerings for all Airtel users while creating commercial viability for small developers/entrepreneurs.
“Airtel has been at the forefront of innovation and customer delight in the Indian telecom sector. Being the first to bring the Android™ powered HTC Magic to India further underscores our commitment to enrich the communication experience of all Airtel users.” said, Raghunath Mandava, Chief Marketing Officer, Mobile Services, Bharti Airtel. Added, “The HTC Magic presents a powerful mobile internet and multimedia experience that should drive the uptake of accessing the internet over mobile amongst Airtel users.”
HTC Magic opens up a whole new mobile experience for all Airtel users. A tablet-style device, with a sleek design and extraordinary compactness for a smartphone, the HTC Magic presents a supreme mobile internet and multimedia experience. Enhanced with Outlook synchronization, Smart Dialler, and an onscreen keyboard with predictive text, the HTC Magic is a true entertainment and communication powerhouse. Also, to begin with, Airtel customers can avail many utility based applications such as Portfolio Manager, Hello Tune Manager, Weather Channel, Mobshare, In-mobile search and City Search on the HTC Magic.
Jack Tong, Vice President, HTC Asia, said, “HTC is proud to partner with Airtel in launching the much-anticipated Android™-powered HTC Magic in India. The HTC Magic opens up a whole new world of possibilities for people to enrich and customise their mobile phone. HTC has always been known for its industry firsts and technology advancements, and is thus a natural partner to Airtel.”
For Airtel customers, HTC Magic also allows free data download of 100 MB per month for a period of 6 months. The HTC Magic will be available at a market price of Rs. 29,990/- at Airtel Relationship Centres and authorised HTC resellers across 17 cities. The cities include Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Pune, Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Coimbatore, Cochin, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Lucknow, Bhubaneswar and Patna.
The Android™ platform constitutes a complete set of software for mobile devices: an operating system, middleware and key mobile applications. Developed by the Open Handset Alliance, a group of 47 technology and mobile companies, Android™ brings Internet-style innovation and openness to mobile phones and enables developers to create mobile applications to optimise the functionalities of the mobile phone. Android™ does not differentiate between the phone’s core applications and third-party applications, thus providing users with a broad spectrum of applications and services.
Airtel applications available with HTC Magic
- Portfolio Manager: Portfolio Manager is Mobile Client application to provide general public a secured and user friendly service platform. Its objective is to facilitate investors in Indian share market to manage their portfolio in a handsome way. Special offer for HTC Magic users – 3 Months subscription waiver
- Hello Tunes Manager: Hello Tunes Manager will be used by subscribers to search for, buy and share hello tunes/hello tune albums. You can use Hello Tunes Manager to send/receive hello tune recommendations from friends, rate hello tunes and much more. Special offer for HTC Magic – Free Hello Tune downloads for one month.
- Weather Channel: This application provides detailed weather forecasts for the current day and next 6 days. Any location of user’s choice can be marked as favorite. The user can obtain weather forecast for (a) Current location (b) Favorite location (c) Any other location of choice.
- Mobshare: MobShare is a Mobile phone picture sharing Application that enables Immediate, controlled, and organized sharing of mobile pictures, and the browsing, of the shared Pictures.
- In-Mobile Search: This application enables the user to search for contacts, image files, audio files and video files from a single interface. The user can search any of the above mentioned files starting with the query string entered. It provides the user to view the image or play the audio / video files without the use of any external applications.
- City Search: This application incorporates both location and data call technology, steering you towards the very best activities that your city has to offer. For the selected category, the application retrieves appropriate list of options for any location review. The application provides the full information (address, contact number and other information) for any selected option. User also has an option to call the selected option or SMS the info from the application.
The unique features of HTC Magic
- Superior support and unbeatable mobile internet experience: HTC Magic features a trackball with zoom in/out function. It is also equipped with fit-the-width rendering, and auto screen rotation for an easier navigation experience and internet browsing.
- Providing broad flexibility for personalisation: The HTC Magic has a 3.2” HVGA touch screen display and features a trackball for easy access and a 3.2 mega-pixel camera. It provides full fidelity PC browsing experience, where users can expand and personalise their phone to fit their lifestyle.
- Simply Better: HTC Magic is enhanced with cool HTC goodies like Smart Dialler and a versatile on-screen keyboard. Smart Dialler lets you call people in whatever way you like, by either dialling the phone number or by dialling the first few letters of the name of the contact. The versatile keyboard helps to choose the favourite way to type and the predictive text completion helps in typing much faster.
- Choose Your Connections: Take your inbox with you wherever you go. HTC Magic allows Microsoft Exchange server synchronisation for email, calendar and contacts. Simply put, with HTC Magic, one can always keep the personal and office emails flowing.