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HTC STRTrk / QTek 8500

 HTC STRTrk / QTek 8500 Discontinued
9th May 2006

Formerly known as the Star Trek, the clumsily-namsd HTC STRTrk is a lightweight Windows clamshell phone that will also be sold under the QTek 8500 name.

The Star Trek / STRTrk / QTek 8500 is one of a very small number of traditional format clamshell phones running the Windows operating system, and this particular model comes in at just 99 grams in weight which also makes it one of the lightest Windows smartphones on the market.

 HTC STRTrk / Qtek 8500

On the surface, the HTC STRTrk looks like a very conventional medium to high end clamshell phone. There's a 2.2" 240x320 pixel display, 1.3 megapixel digital camera, expandable memory using microSD cards, Bluetooth, quad-band GSM plus GPRS and EDGE and 64Mb of internal memory in a handset measuring 99x51x16mm. There are external media controls too, plus a 128x128 pixel external display which is handy for music playback.

Of course, underneath the STRTrk is running Windows Mobile 5.0, which means it comes with Pocket versions of Outlook, Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player and it can work with Microsoft Office documents too.

The fact that the HTC STRTrk / QTek 8500 does all of this and still comes in at under 100 grams is pretty impressive, and it looks quite smart too.

There are a few downsides to this handset - there's no 3G or WiFi support (but then again it weighs less than 100 grams). Also, Windows on a 2.2" display (even with a 240x320 pixel resolution) might not be quite the user experience you were hoping for. In our opinion, Windows works just fine on larger displays but be less useful on compact displays such as the HTC STRTrk / QTek 8500.

Perhaps you can regard the HTC STRTrk as the successor to the ill-fated Motorola MPx220 - Motorola managed to get the MPx220 to market very late, and it was full of bugs. HTC are definitely more accomplished in this market segment than Motorola, so it's much more likely that this will be a success.

You can expect to see variants of the HTC STRTrk picked up by i-mate and major carriers such as T-Mobile and Orange in addition to QTek (although these have not been confirmed). In the QTek 8500 guise, the phone should be available in silver, pink and black and should start shipping at the end of Q2 2006 or beginning of Q3.

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HTC STRTrk / QTek 8500 at a glance

Available:

Q2/Q3 2006

Network:

Quad-band GSM

Data:

GPRS + EDGE

Screen:

240x320 pixels, 65k colours

Camera:

1.3 megapixels

Size:

Medium clamshell
99x51x16mm / 99 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Infra-red:

Not specified

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Limited

Battery life:

Not specified

OS:

Windows Mobile 5.0

 

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