Time for some trivia: what was the name of HTC's first phone? We asked this question on our Twitter, and we got many responses, including Canary, Wallaby, Blue Angel, and others. To get the answer from the source, we emailed HTC. directly Here's the reply:
Our first phone was actually the Wallaby aka the O2 XDA. We launched that about six months before the canary.
So there you have it, the Wallaby was HTC's first phone. If anyone ever wondered where the infamous website XDA-Developers got their name, you can look at the Wallaby, the first in a series of other XDA-branded devices by European cell phone carrier O2. But the Wallaby went by many other names (as is the case with many HTC devices). You may have also seen it as the T-Mobile MDA, the Dopod 686, the Siemens SX56, and the Qtek 1010.
A full eight years ago, in the spring of 2002, the O2 Wallaby hit store shelves. It was running Microsoft Pocket PC 2002 Phone Edition (and you thought "Windows Phone 7 Series" felt too long?), with an Intel StronARM CPU clocking in at 206MHz. It had just 32MB of RAM and 32MB or ROM, and if you left the battery discharge, you would lose all of your data. The screen was the same size as the iPhone at 3.5', with QVGA 320×240 resolution. It wasn't capable of 3G or even EDGE...but you could get a GPRS data signal which would max out at about 15kbps (3.5G devices of today can achieve download speeds of over 3000kbps on a good day). You could connect the Wallaby to your computer with either the serial interface, or USB 1.0. It had expansion slots for MMC/SD, so adding more memory was possible. For short-range data transfer, forget Bluetooth, you had to deal with infrared. Powering everything was a decent-sized 1500mAh battery. The phone cost £899 outright, or around $1450 in today's market. But for that, you got a stylus cleverly hidden inside of the antenna ;).
Did you own a Wallaby? If so, feel free to share some thoughts or even pictures in the comments!
(images courtesy Tekguru)