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PHONE EDITION: mmO2 announced future plans for xda II
Posted by Arne Hess - on Tuesday, 01.07.03 - 13:36:18 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News - Viewed 6388x
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O2 today announced that it has further plans for its widely acclaimed integrated PDA and mobile handset - the xda - and will introduce an xda II later this year. In addition to all of the existing features, the xda II will offer best in class capability for both consumer and business customers. The xda II will be available in the UK, Germany and Ireland before Christmas 2003.

For consumers, the xda II will offer a built-in digital camera and full multimedia messaging capability plus the opportunity to play high quality, color games thanks to inbuilt Java technology. The 65,000 color display ensures that both photographs and games are sharp and clear. Customers will be able to download games from the popular O2 Games Arcade - offering a constantly changing choice of color 'arcade' style games. The xda II will also offer access to O2's music service enabling users to select, retrieve and store the latest chart hits onto the device - and listen to them in CD quality stereo sound.

For businesses, the xda II will be triband, and therefore may be used worldwide. It will also offer optional w-LAN capability and Bluetooth for seamless connectivity. Customers will be able to access a range of business services and applications, including Xmail, Microsoft Mobile Information Server and Extended Office which offer the ability to access corporate email on the move. O2 will also be working with its numerous business partners to offer further solutions for the xda II.

The xda II will run Microsoft's latest Phone Edition of Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC, and retains its sleek stylish design. The xda II will also feature an O2-branded 'control pad', designed to drive incremental data usage by creating a complete O2 user experience, and enabling customers to access services quickly and easily. Color, sound and visuals will make the experience truly intuitive.

Kent Thexton, chief marketing and data officer,mmO2, commented: "Even today, a year after its successful launch, the xda from O2 is a leading device of its class. The xda II reinforces our commitment to lead in the mobile data space. Combining a high specification product, outstanding functionality, customer focused packages and transparent pricing, we believe the xda II will leverage the success of the xda and continue to win us market share in this market."

Key features are of the xda II

  • Triband capability to enable seamless use worldwide
  • Integrated 640x480 pixels digital camera and full multimedia messaging functionality
  • Bluetooth and optional Wireless LAN capability
  • Faster processor (Intel Xscale 400 MHz) facilitating faster use
  • Improved talk and standby time
  • Microsoft Phone Edition of Windows MobileTM 2003 Software for Pocket PC

Sales of the widely acclaimed xda continue to show steady growth finding a firm following amongst technology-friendly adopters, many of whom are in the small business segment. More than 64,000 devices have been sold in UK, Germany, Ireland and Asia.

Figures from Context highlight that for the voice-enabled PDA market, O2 has a 36% market share in Western Europe, a 59% market share in UK, and an 80% market share in Ireland . As well as winning excellent reviews, xda users are using its functionality to the full and are consistently amongst O2's heaviest data users.

Also today, O2 in Germany announced that it will launch the "xda NaviKit" this summer. This kit will extend the xda CarKit to an extensive navigation system, including a GPS receiver, an adapter and unlimited navigation inside Germany in the first 12 months without additional costs. The software is easily installed on the xda, and will enable the customer to view real-time traffic information so that they can choose the quickest route to the destination. The driving maps and route selections are displayed in full color for complete ease of use.

Pricing
The xda is currently available from £299 in the UK and €499 in Germany. Pricing of the xda II - not available.

Availability
The xda is available O2 stores and other retail channels. The xda II will be available in the UK, Germany and Ireland before Christmas 2003.

Cheers ~ Arne

Related Links : [More Information] Source : [mmo2]


 

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Comments
Posted by Wolfgang Irber on 01.07.03 - 21:58:10

Just smiled when reading that xda user are amongst the heaviest data users.

Of course, they are!

Transfering data is no fun as long as the data cannot be made visualized. The pda format display is just perfect for reading, organizing and even looking at small pictures.  Forgett the cell phone displays, even reading SMS is a pain, not to speak about email. So, why should somebody transfer loads of data using a cell phone while on the go... I often get the impression that carriers are just proud of presenting data transmission capacity, but forget how to make them visible to the standard user!!!

Cheers

W

Posted by Arne Hess on 02.07.03 - 10:54:28

Wolfgang! The last sentence is a good point I completely agree with you. You are absolutely right that just providing the back-end infrastructure and capacity isn't enough but you also have to provide smart devices which can be used for mobile data.

BUT I have to disagree that a cell phone isn't good enough for reading E-Mails, SMS or even surf the Web or watching pictures/photos.

If you are talking about "dumb" and simple Cell Phones, you are right. Some of this tasks can be fairly done good enough on Feature Phones but you are not right if it comes to Smart Phones (which even looks like Cell Phones and have the same size) like Windows Powered Smartphones like the Orange SPV or PPCW.Net i-Mate.

Here you are limited for sure by the screen size but on the other hand it gives you much more freedom.

See also my column "THOUGHT: How much Smartphone, PDA or Notebook do you need to be mobile?" here (http://.../).

So for me it's not a either/or discussion but both platforms as well as notebooks have their value set.

And just to prove it; I wrote this comment with my PPCW.Net i-Mate Smartphone together with the ORA flex-keyboard... ;-)

Posted by JJ on 02.07.03 - 12:37:54

Thanks for the news. Very glad that o2 are continuing with product development, especially as they say only 64k units sold. Does not seem a lot to me.

I think they are not marketing the unit enough (in the UK at least) - when I show it to people, they all want one!

Posted by N. Kanters on 02.07.03 - 13:07:45

So finally the XDA will becom a full operational wireless network independent device !!!

Please don't forget to put in a Compact Flashcard slot for those like myself who are really havy data users and want to have the abillity to use mass storage cards on the XDA ore use my CF-wireless LAN card witch by the way worked well on my previos device (HP).

I've been one of the first who both the XDA in The netherlands and cracked the simlock so i was able to use my LIBERTEL / VODAVONE card on it.

Now I'm developing webbased applications for my XDA at first for own use, but maybe when averithing goes well who knows....?

Keep up the gooed work,

N. Kanters

Posted by Wolfgang Irber on 02.07.03 - 23:40:19

Arne,

Good point, I forgot about the new smartphones which are definitely a major improvement in terms of data visualisation on cell phones. Your report of how you bought your friend´s notebook was a good story!

My comments were based on the CURRENT situation, as it is, looking around, what friends and neighbors are doing with their mobiles: just phoning and sending SMS.

Often friends watch me using my xda, they get curious, and when I tell them I am using GPRS a lot, they look surprised saying: Wow, this is surely quite expensive!!!

That´s what the people currently have in mind about GPRS: EXPENSÌVE. Marketing: well done in attracting customers!

Using the xda with o2 I well enjoy the XL data GPRS subscription package inclduing 5 MB for 7,99 Euro. And, honestly, even though browsing and emailing a lot, I merely get over the 5 MB per month. And taking the overall fun and convenience into account, 8 Euro is not a big deal. Just a standard restaurant meal.

But the GPRS pricing is just another example of carrier marketing. Often I get the impression those marketing guys never use the stuff they are doing the marketing for...

Anyway, lost a bit the track smile

I am really curious to get the hands on the new xda. Hopefully it is a bit less buggier than the current one. Sometimes I get the idea that everybody using the xda got a replacement model at least once... I am already having the third one.

Cheers

W

Posted by Tim Morten on 02.07.03 - 23:40:55

Any word on whether HTC will be manufacturing again (so that US carriers might pick up the device as well)?

Posted by Husam on 09.10.03 - 12:00:48

I am one how will visit Gitex Computer Shopper in Dubai looking for a O2 XDA II GSM/GPRS Pocket PC .

cold you pls update me if I can find it in these shopper.

Thanks for your help

Husam Khalaf

husambah@hotmail.com

manama-Bahrain

00973-9677753

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