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Will Android Upstage Apple in the Smartphone Market?

Posted January. 19, 2010 08:33,   


Google began its challenge of Apple in the Korean smartphone market yesterday with the introduction of the Android-powered smartphone Motoroi by Motorola.

Motorola released Android smartphone models such as the Droid and Cliq in the U.S. late last year, beginning a challenge to Apple’s iPhone. Android is Google’s smartphone operating system.

Motorola Korea will team up with SK Telecom to sell the Motoroi in Korea from next month. The cost of the phone is estimated at 900,000 won (800 U.S. dollars), but the sale price will be around 200,000 won (178 dollars), or similar to that of the iPhone’s, given SK’s plan to give heavy subsidies.

Market experts had predicted the iPhone to dominate the Korean smartphone market, but handsets supported by Android could change that.

Android allows multiple functions on smartphones like the iPhone, but Google is allowing Android handset makers to use its operating system for free. This has prompted global handset makers to introduce Google service and Apple to fight Google’s supporters.

The Dong-A Ilbo did a comparison of the Motoroi and the iPhone.

The iPhone is incapable of using digital multimedia broadcasting, and this has scared away many Koreans who like using the service when commuting. Motoroi users not only have access to DMB, but can also listen to FM radio.

The screen sizes of the two devices also differ. The Motoroi’s screen (3.7 inches) is bigger than the iPhone’s (3.5 inches). The former has a higher resolution of 480X854 compared to the iPhone’s 320X480, making the Motoroi’s display almost twice as clear.

The difference in picture quality is as big as that between the latest high-definition screen and an older TV.