SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – LG Electronics dipped into last-generation technology to slash the price of a Google Android smartphone to $49. The handset was the most notable of a flood of Android devices at the CTIA show here.
The new LG handset uses a 600 MHz Qualcomm chip set, a 3.2-inch display and a 3 Mpixel camera to bring the price of an Android handset to what LG hopes is a broader market. Sprint will sell the phone for $49 with a two-year contract. T-Mobile will also sell the device at a price not yet announced.
The lower price will help LG compete with giants Samsung and Motorola who have dominated the high-end market for Android smartphones. Both companies rolled out several new models at CTIA where the Samsung Galaxy Tab, an Apple iPad-like tablet with a 7-inch display, captured much attention.
The Galaxy Tab is geared as a mobile 3G device and goes on sale later this year through service providers at prices yet to be announced. Samsung will also sell a Wi-Fi only version of the tablet.
Veteran handheld system maker Archos showed its first family of devices built on Android version 2.1. They ranged from a $99 model with a 2.8-inch screen shipping today to 7- and 10-inch tablets yet to hit the market at prices up to $299, all based on an ARM Cortex A8 processor.
LG's $49 Android phones uses a 600 MHz Qualcomm processor.