Information and photos of mobile handset maker HTC's latest Google Android-powered slider phone, currently designated the HTC PD42100, have leaked from the Federal Communications Commission Website. The photos show the Verizon Wireless company logo on the front of the device, all but confirming the smartphone is headed to the largest wireless carrier in the United States.
The handset is also notable for having dual 3G modems-a CDMA 2000 connection (which includes EV-DO Rev. A access) and a GSM 850 modem. In addition, it features a 4-inch touch screen, a rear-facing camera with single-LED flash, microSD memory expansion, Bluetooth and 802.11b/g/n WiFi connectivity, and a slide-out physical QWERTY keyboard.
This is the second leak in as many months for HTC: In August, a British e-retailer reportedly posted, then pulled, details about two soon-to-launch HTC smartphones: the Desire Z, which is code-named Vision, and the Desire HD, code-named Ace.
In the United States, Sprint currently offers five HTC handsets, most notably the Evo 4G; AT&T offers the Aria, Pure and Tilt 2; T-Mobile offers seven devices, from the MyTouch 3G to the Touch Pro 2; and on the Verizon network, customers can choose from seven handsets that include the Droid Eris and Droid Incredible.
HTC announced second-quarter net profits of $269 million July 30, following shipments of 5.4 million handsets. The figure represented 33 percent year-over-year growth, thanks largely to the company's alignment with the Android OS. Since equipping its handsets with Android, HTC has quickly established itself as a major smartphone brand in the United States.
When releasing HTC's second-quarter results July 29, company officials said earnings rose 33 percent year over year, and they announced a number of promotions and new positions that have been created within the company to foster future growth.
Rival Motorola has also followed an Android-heavy strategy, with a product line that could be easily confused with HTC's-it shipped the Motorola Droid before the HTC Droid Eris and the Motorola Droid X after the HTC Droid Incredible. The same day as HTC's earnings announcement, Motorola reported quarterly shipments of 8.3 million handsets, 2.7 million of which were smartphones.
While Apple's iPhone iOS continues to lead the U.S. smartphone operating system ecosystem at 56 percent market share in August, Google's Android platform is catching, notching a 25 percent plot, according to a report from data firm Quantcast. Quantcast also found that Android began 2010 with 18.6 percent smartphone OS market share and managed to take 11.4 percent share from Apple's iOS, 1.6 percent from RIM's BlackBerry and 5.7 percent from all other OS providers, such as Microsoft Windows Mobile and Palm's WebOS.
The growth for Android is set to continue, according to research firm Canalys. Chris Jones, a Canalys principal analyst, said Android is gaining "impressive momentum" around the world. Other important growth areas for Android, reported Canalys, are South Korea and China-which has a smartphone market second only to the United States. During the second quarter, China's smartphone market saw shipments of 6.9 million units-11 percent of the worldwide total.