SPY SHOTS: Dell revs up Android and Windows smartphones

Dell is gearing up for a big year in small devices. Following last week’s leak of the 7 inch and 10 inch Android ‘Streak’ slates which will join the compact 5 inch Streak 5 Engadget has scored the scoop on four new smartphones coming our way out of Austin Texas.

The Aero (show above) is Dell’s first Android smartphone announced earlier this year and now tipped for release before mid-year. The 3.5 inch phone packs a multitouch screen and allegedly a capacitive stylus for handwriting recognition; under the hood lurks a 624MHz processor and Android 1.5 although the leaked presentation slides note an update to Android 2.1 later in the year.

The up-market ‘Thunder’ (above) is a 4.1 inch slider with QWERTY keypad and OLED screen 1GHz Snapdragon processor 8 megapixel camera and Android 2.1 out of the box.

It also sports Dell’s own ‘Stage’ user interface atop Android and at
first glance it seems similar to HTC’s highly-praised Sense UI.

The Thunder’s chassis is also used for the Windows Phone 7 ‘Lightning’ (above) although this apparently downgrades the camera to 5 megapixels. Other features allegedly shared with the Thunder are GPS chip accelerometer compass and an FM radio.

Meanwhile the ‘Smoke’ (above) adopts a stylishly tall yet ‘pocketable’ profile for a QWERTY device with a 2.8 inch screen and an insanely thin 12mm profile. Like the Thunder it runs Android with Dell’s Stage UI but the indicated version of the OS is the as-yet-unreleased Android 2.2 ‘Froyo’. The expected launch date for this one is early 2011 so nobody can say that Dell doesn’t plan ahead!