3GSM: Toshiba back with new PORTEGE G500 and G900

With a strong pedigree in the laptop market, we're surprised its taken Toshiba so long to branch out into the smartphone space. But the Japanese company has finally hit the scene and it's debut pair of Window Mobile powered handsets, the PORTEGE G500 (Windows Mobile 5.0 for Smartphone edition) and PORTEGE G900 (Windows Mobile 6 for PocketPC Edition), come armed with the necessary features to flourish in a competitive market, including a mobile phone first - embedded fingerprint authentication technology.

First up is the compact if somewhat chunky (22.5mm thick) slider, the G500. This is Toshiba's phone-orientated proposition and packs HSDPA, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. It also has a 2.3-inch QVGA-quality screen, two-megapixel snapper and front loaded VGA camera for video calls. All the PIM functionality and synching with Microsoft Outlook on the PC is present and correct while push email retrieval and web surfing on the full Opera 8 internet browser will be nippy with HSDPA and Wi-FI connections. Storage is served by a MicroSD card slot and 64MB of internal memory.

Toshiba's second offering, the G900, targets the more hardcore business user, packing a full-sliding QWERTY keyboard and more impressively a three-inch wide-VGA quality display (although the resolution checks in at 480x600 pixels). The G900 sports the exact same feature set as the G500.

Both smartphones also include fingerprint recognition technology to heighten security while these scanners can also double up as a touch-sensitive-joypad to navigate around the phone.

Other new look features include Bluetooth Auto lock - when you move out of Bluetooth range of your notebook, your notebook locks, Remote Screen that offers real time and full control of your phone from your PC letting you send text messages and MMS and a Remote Control facility to use your phone to remotely control your PC in presentation situations.

The G500 wll ship in March while the G900 will be available around May time.

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