The word this week is that Apple could be working on an “entry-level” iPhone, one that could cost around $99, but would have the same look and feel as the more robust $199 and $299 models. Of course this lower-priced model would also feature a more budget-oriented data plan.
The timing for such a handset’s arrival could be as early as June or July, according to RBC Capital Markets analyst Mike Abramsky. This would be inline with the arrival of the latest iPhone 3G model.
The question would be why would Apple go this route, especially as the phone would likely come with fewer features? Wouldn’t this also impact sales of the higher-end models, especially given that hardcore Apple fans already spring for the extra bucks for those products? And more importantly, could this be the first step Apple is making in coming up with more mass-market products? Could we see even more affordable PCs from the company? Time will certainly tell.
Microsoft Phone Out the Window
The other rumor this week is that the so-called Windows Phone might not be happening. The rumor was that Microsoft was working on a handset, one that could possibly run on the upcoming Windows Mobile 7 operating system.
But this week Microsoft cleared the air, and said to The Wall Street Journal and Cnet that no so handset is in the works. So unless this is more smoke and mirrors from the Redmond, Wash. giant, there seems to be no Windows Phone.
LG Arena to be Unveiled at MWC
And LG’s latest mobile phone will officially enter the mobile arena next week at the Mobile World Congress (MWC). The potential iPhone rival, known as the Arena 3D, features the “S-Class” interface. This past weekend LG shed some light on the new phone.
“The direct, intuitive and dynamic S-Class UI will be unlike anything that has appeared in a mobile phone before,” said LG’s Dr. Skott Ahn, President and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company, in a statement issued on Sunday. “With rich 3D graphics, touch senstivity and exciting multimedia capabilities, it will truly make Arena a fully loaded multimedia phone.”
The S-Class interface will likely provide a cube-based layout with four customizable home screens and touch-based 3D menus.
Other features include:
- HSDPA 7.2 connectivity
We’ll post full details as soon as LG makes that “official announcement.”