Although the smartphone market is beginning to replace the traditional mobile phone, prices have risen beyond expectations. Long gone are the days where you could pick up a mobile phone for Â£15 that does pretty much everything a higher end model can. The smartphone market is evolving so rapidly that manufacturers are unable to maintain stable prices, pushing brand new technology to the shelves within months.
It seems Orange recognised a potential niche market and decided to take action. Not everybody wants to spend Â£500 for a mobile phone, where the technology will become obsolete in under a year.
Introducing the Orange San Francisco – a fully featured, Google Android Smartphone, costing a mere Â£89.99. At a fraction of the competition’s price, the Orange San Francisco is considered one of the few bargains of the century.
The Orange San Francisco is selling like hotcakes, bringing Google Android to the masses. By combining cheap hardware with optimized software, Orange has developed a device that gives smartphones costing up to six times the price a real run for their money.
The stunning 3.5 inch, WVGA 480 x 800 pixel OLED display has been applauded by critics, with one of the first few phones to take on the new screen technology. Producing sharper, brighter and more vibrant images, OLED screens are considered the universal replacement for LCD displays. However, many did not expect to be introduced to the new technology on an Â£89.99 device. The addition of a capacitive display has enabled touch sensitive and multi-touch capabilities – a luxury usually seen on high end smartphones such as the Apple iPhone 4.
Equipped with a Qualcomm MSM 7227 600MHz CPU and 512 MB of RAM, the Orange San Francisco can slice through Google Android like butter. Smooth transitions and immediate response times has enabled a device that can run several applications simultaneously, with a delightful browser experience that delivers smoother scrolling.
Even at such a low price point, the Orange San Francisco does not cut corners. 3G, GPS (SatNav), bluetooth, a digital compass, accelerometer, ambient light sensors and a proximity sensor are all included as standard – more features than some higher priced smartphones. Up to 32GB of expandable storage can be added to the device through the additional SD card slot, providing plenty of room for all your videos, music and photos.
The 3.2 megapixel camera with auto focus and video recording is more than enough to fulfil your photography needs on a mobile device. As an added bonus, the phone comes equipped with an FM radio via the included headset.
Google Android is equipped with its own Market, introducing over 200,000 applications to the Orange San Francisco with thousands of new apps being added everyday. Popular apps include Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Gmail, Google Maps, Google Navigation and games such as Angry Birds and Tetris.
Smartphone journalist and author of Orange San Francisco England.