every day you see a new entrant into the Windows Mobile device market and although we have to admit that we missed spotting Velocity Mobile's launch back in April, but their devices seem like they'll give HTC something of a run for their money, especially the just-launched Velocity 103.
It's hard to miss that Velocity Mobile seems has borrowed a few design cues from HTC, especially when it comes to the UI which Velocity Mobile calls Odyssey, but there seems to be enough their own design put into it to make the devices carry their own weight.
The Velocity 103 is a touch screen device, but it also has a trackball which looks like it has been borrowed from a BlackBerry Pearl, and besides it there are only two other buttons on the front, a call and an end call button. There are a few buttons around the sides, such as a camera button, volume controls and a "Velocity" button, which we're not quite sure what it does. There, Velocity 103 features a Qualcomm processor of as yet undetermined speed, 128MB of RAM and 256MB of ROM and a microSD card slot for expansion.
The touch screen measures 2.8 inches, which might seem a little bit on the small side in comparison to some of the latest Windows Mobile devices, but the good news is that it has a resolution of 640x480 pixels and can display 262,000 colors. Other useful features include a built-in GPS with aGPS support, 802.11b/g WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR, USB 2.0 OTG interface, a 2Megapixel camera and a front-mounted camera for video calls, quad-band GSM with GPRS and EDGE support and tri-band 3G with HSDPA up to 7.2Mbps and HSUPA with upload speeds of up to 2.2Mbps.
In other words, you're looking at quite a feature-packed handset here, but Velocity Mobile has added a touch of their own magic as well with what they call VOTA or Velocity over the air, which allows you to download updates for the Odyssey UI without the need of a PC. Claimed talk time is up to 4h with a standby time of up to 200h, and for those using the navigation feature, it'll last about 2.5h.
Velocity Mobile is also working on the Velocity 111 which will offer similar features, but will have a smaller 2.46-in display with 320x240 resolution, but it will also have a full QWERTY keyboard on the front of the device to make up for the smaller screen.
The Velocity 103 is available for pre-order from Expansys for £334.99 (€419.99/$499.99) and is expected to ship by the end of this month.
You can find Velocity Mobile's website here