Motorola's Cliq Joins Smartphone Battleground

By September 10, 2009

Motorola announced its first Android handset device today: The Motorola Cliq, with "social skills." A new, high-performance smartphone is the focus of the Schaumberg, IL-based company's hope to boost device sales and improve revenue. Since the success of the Razr several years ago, Motorola has not been making much impression in the wireless consumer market, as independent analyst Jeff Kagan told ComputerWorld today. "Motorola has been stumbling around in the dark," he says. "This Cliq could be the biggest opportunity for Motorola in many years."

According to ChannelWeb , this is the first device to offer MotoBlur, a custom interface that aggregates social media feeds from Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and Google. The service streams these updates to the home screen - all the information is visible without starting up applications or switching between them. MotoBlur also backs up user information to remote servers in case of handset or data loss, including contacts, log-ins, customized home screens, and e-mails.

The 3G Motorola handset will be carried by T-Mobile USA later this fall. True to its multimedia-ready stance, it comes pre-loaded with lots of content providers. Along with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 3.1" touchscreen and Wi-Fi, the Cliq is equipped with a five-mega-pixel camera with auto-focus, video capture and 24 frames-per-second playback. In the audio category, this smartphone has a 3.5mm headset jack, a music player pre-loaded with the Amazon MP3 store, Shazam and iMeem Mobile. The 2GB memory can be expanded to 32GB maximum capacity.

The Cliq will be released in other markets as the Dext, according to ComputerWorld, and is just the first of many that will use MotoBlur.

Pricing has not been released yet, but ABI Research analyst Kevin Burden predicts a sub-$200 price tag in Computer World. It will have to be that inexpensive to compete with already established smartphone favorites the iPhone, Blackberry and Palm Pre, not to mention other hopefuls. It will also have to incorporate all of its extra features into a well-performing machine, or those social skills will just be a waste of space.

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