LG Drops iPhone Competitor, Web Yawns

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[ Technology]

Seoul, Korea-based LG Electronics was noticeably quiet last week when Apple revealed iPhone to the world. Bloggers had noted a mystery touch-screen phone produced by LG that was strikingly similar a month ago. LG announced the KE850 Prada today, but don’t expect to see it in the US.

You may not even see it as much in Europe as you might have before Apple sucker-punched everybody, though Europeans will be able to buy it much sooner – next month, actually. But the Prada phone is pricey, and doesn’t have quite the coolness factor as the iPhone.

But at least the user can view documents in Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and PDF, the main obstacle to Apple’s complete assault on the BlackBerry – but it’s a 3G phone, which means it won’t be made available on outdated US networks. Prada will launch in Europe and Asia only.

When word got out in the blogosphere about an iPhone twin, LG went into stealth mode, not answering phone calls about the apparent similarities.

Representatives were either very busy at CES in Las Vegas where they weren’t showing it off, didn’t think it was worth mentioning because there would be no US launch, were keeping under wraps until this week, or felt a little outclassed by iPhone.

If the Prada were to be sold in the US, which it’s not, it would run you about $800, a couple of bills more than iPhone without the coolness.

Engadget reports that “there’s no mention of multi-touch capabilities, an on-screen keyboard, or the accelerometer and proximity sensor’s found on the iPhone.”

There’s also no on-board storage, which means users will have to buy an accessory to store their mobile media.

And the display’s in black and white.

But, the Prada plays an array of audio formats, supports MPEG-4, and has a 2 megapixel camera.

So for all the folks intrigued by a possible LG competitor in the US, or even more so by an alternative to Cingular, you can keep on waiting, unless LG is being quiet about something else.


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LG Drops iPhone Competitor, Web Yawns
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