At last week’s Windows Phone 7 event, Microsoft announced several new companies that would be releasing smartphones running its OS. In addition to the manufacturers that produced the first wave of WP7 devices (and with Dell oddly absent), Microsoft added Acer, Fujitsu, ZTE, and of course Nokia to the mix. At the COMPUTEX expo just starting up in Taipei, Acer has revealed its first Windows Phone entry, the W4.
As a Windows Phone 7 smartphone, with Microsoft’s chassis specs to conform to, there’s little surprising about the W4’s hardware capabilities. The smartphone will run a Qualcomm MSM8255 chip at 1GHz, have a 3.6-inch 480×800 display, and a five-megapixel camera with auto-focus; really, not too far off from a current Froyo handset. The radio options Acer has shared include HSPA on 850/1900MHz for North America, and 900/2100MHz for other markets; there’s no indication yet of the possibility for a 1700MHz version.
The W4 also includes support for DLNA home media sharing, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, and 8GB of internal flash storage. All-in-all, the W4 may seem a little underwhelming for Acer’s first entry into the Windows Phone family, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. For Windows Phone to develop as a platform, it needs all sorts of models from plenty of different manufacturers; maybe Acer will be able to sell the W4 for a song, and help the OS see penetration into new markets. For now, we’ll just have to sit tight and wait to see what the rest of the Mango club will look like.