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June 3, 2009
Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Acer has confirmed plans to launch a range of smartphones based on the Android platform in the fourth quarter of this year.
In the wake of its foray into the mobile space with a line-up of Windows Mobile devices, Acer this week announced it has joined the Open Handset Alliance, “demonstrating its support for Android as an open mobile platform and its commitment to Android’s commercial success”.
Acer did not give details on how many devices it would be launching and would only say the first gadgets would be available towards year end.
On Tuesday the Taiwanese vendor also unveiled the Aspire One netbook, it’s first such device to feature the Android operating system. In addition to Microsoft’s Windows OS, the majority of Acer netbooks will also offer Android in the future, allowing users to select their preferred OS, Acer said. The company plans to launch its first Aspire One netbooks with Android in the third quarter.
The Google-backed Android platform has been gaining momentum of late and the OHA now counts a member base of over 40 companies. Japanese vendor Panasonic is believed to be coming out with a Google phone in 2010. While Samsung will release several gadgets based on Android, with the first expected to arrive in the summer months, followed by two more in the second half of the year.
A recently leaked company road map from troubled vendor Motorola suggests that the company has and Android gadget called the Morrison in the works, and that it will be available on T-Mobile USA towards year end. And Android pioneer HTC is also gearing up to release two more Android phones this year, in addition to the recently launched Magic handset.
Meanwhile, Canada’s Koolu has taken the Neo FreeRunner open source handset from OpenMoko and stuck Android Cupcake on it. It’s already shipping beta versions and hopes to have a consumer offering available over the summer.
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