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Is a Dell Smartphone a Smart Move?

Late last week, the Wall Street Journal’s Justin Scheck and Yukari Iwatani Kane reported that computer giant, Dell, is the next company to enter the increasingly crowded smartphone space. Since then, reporters across the wireless industry have been debating if this is a prudent move on Dell’s part and what a Dell smartphone might be like.

Personally, I think the competition in the smartphone space is great for the consumer. It drives innovation and forces industry titans, like RIM, Apple and Google, to constantly try to one-up each other to grab more marketshare. Apple’s market leading iPhone has been out for almost two years, and other companies are still trying to deliver a device that will be a true “iPhone killer.” Is it possible Dell will be the company to finally achieve this?

That answer remains to be seen, but the WSJ article shared some details on the device itself, which has reportedly been in development for a year:

  • Prototypes have been built on Google’s Android operating system using Microsoft’s Windows Mobile software.
  • There are two possible models, according to the WSJ’s sources.
  • “One model includes a touchscreen but no physical keyboard, like Apple Inc.’s iPhone. Another is a slider-style phone with a keypad and that slides from beneath the screen.”

Despite these reports, a Dell spokesperson told the WSJ, “We haven’t committed to anything.” Regardless, speculation is already running wild and I have no doubt that will continue until Dell makes an official announcement one way or the other.

But, as InformationWeek reporter Antone Gonsalves pointed out in an article on the device, “if the company has any hope for success in the fiercely competitive market, its phone will have to go beyond good.”

What do you think about Dell moving into the smartphone space? Could this be another device that will get people excited about or is this going to miss the mark like Microsoft’s Zune music player?

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