NEC and AT&T announce ruggedized, hardware QWERTY Terrain

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Back in April, news of an upcoming Android from an unusual OEM caught our eye, with a leak showing a ruggedized handset with a hardware QWERTY keyboard from NEC. The so-called NEC Terrain was apparently warming up for a launch with AT&T, and while we were at a loss for any specific details on the phone’s hardware (besides what we could pick up from the pictures), it was still interesting to see NEC turning its attention to the US market. After laying low for a couple months, the Terrain is back, and today NEC and AT&T announced plans to start selling the phone this week.

Both rugged Androids and those with keyboards have reputations for lackluster specs, a risk we mentioned back when the Terrain first leaked. The good news: they’re not awful. The Terrain’s saving grace may be its dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 SoC, helping to raise it to the level of relatively higher-end QWERTY phones like the BlackBerry Q10.

The Terrain supports AT&T LTE, Push-to-Talk, and has a five megapixel main camera with VGA front-facer. There’s 8GB of internal flash, expandable via microSD, and the phone arrives running Android 4.0 ICS. The big question for us that still remains is the resolution of the Terrain’s display. We know it a tiny 3.1-inch component, but all NEC and AT&T have said so far is that it’s a “high resolution screen.” We’re not expecting a 720 x 720 display like on the Q10, but it would sure be nice to confirm just what we’re looking at here – we’ll update you once that info’s available.

The NEC Terrain goes up for sale this Friday, where it will run you just about $100 on contract.

Source: AT&T

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bitsRead more about Stephen Schenck!