Dell has officially announced its Windows Phone 7 portrait slider, and it looks spectacular. The best part just might be its codename: “Lightning”.
In my previous post regarding Windows Phone 7, I mentioned the fact that a highlight of Microsoft’s WP7 commencement event was the introduction of a wide range of brands to choose from. Besides LG, HTC, Samsung, and possibly Motorola, Dell was even thrown into the mix. It looks like Dell came out with all guns a-blazin, because the Venus Pro looks like a winner.
The Venus Pro looks to target the recently announced Motorola Droid Pro, and even the BlackBerry Torch–the question is, can it compete?
Dell didn’t disappoint on “Lightning’s” specs. It features an AMOLED, Gorilla Glass 4.1″ TFT screen, fairly large for a vertical slider. It also has a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, a 5-megapixel camera, 8GB internal storage, 512MB RAM, 1GB ROM, GPS, an FM Radio and full Flash support.
“Lightning’s” exterior doesn’t disappoint either. The 4.1-inch capacitive, multitouch display is joined by additional back, home and search touch-sensitive buttons. It also has rounded chrome sides (think iPhone 3GS), yet resembles its Dell sibling, the Android Thunder (video below).
What really makes this handset stand out in a crowd is the highly coveted keyboard. This is what puts the Venus Pro in contention with the likes of the Torch and Droid Pro, and it competes well. Reviewer Joanna Stern of Engadget fondly wrote, “The rubber-feeling keys remind us a lot of those on the Droid 2 — though, they feel a bit firmer — and the slider mechanism felt sturdy when we slid it open and closed a number of times.” A keyboard of this caliber fits wonderfully with “Lightning’s” edgy form factor.
The Dell Venus Pro is set to become a member of the T-Mobile lineup and should easily become one of the standout devices in Windows Phone 7’s platform. It’s expected to hit shelves by the holiday season.