By Angela Dorizas

SYDNEY: In an ongoing partnership with Telstra, i-mate has launched its latest smartphone range operating on the Next G network. I-mate is releasing the Ultimate 8502 and 9502, boasting high speed uploads, Video Out and added security settings.

The launch refocuses i-mate’s attention on the consumer market, i-mate Asia Pacific general manager, Michael Cavey, told Current.

“i-mate is taking the PDA to the consumer space,” Cavey said. “There is a market within the consumer world.”

With upload speeds of 1.9 Mbps via HSUPA and download speeds of 7.2 Mbps via HSDPA, the Ultimate 8502 and 9502 stand out from competitors. According to i-mate, they are the fastest mobile devices on the Telstra Next G network.

“Being the only device with fast uplink, the Ultimate differentiates itself within the market,” Cavey said.

The Ultimate 8502 and 9502 feature 3.5G, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g, international roaming, Bluetooth connectivity, built-in GPS, QWERTY keyboard and an MP3 player.

The 8502 has a 2.6-inch QVGA LCD touch screen and 2-megapixel camera, while the 9502 has a 2.8-inch VGA LCD touch screen and 3-megapixel camera with auto focus. Both devices are powered by Windows Mobile 6 Professional and can be used as a modem for the home or office PC.

The Direct Video Out feature connects the mobile device to large screen projectors and flat panel displays for viewing photos, emails and presentations.

Remote locking is another key selling point. According to the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association, one mobile is lost or stolen every three minutes within Australia. Taking this figure into consideration, i-mate has integrated Secure i-Q settings.

Users can lock the lost or stolen device via the Secure i-Q portal. Confidential information stored on the mobile can be wiped and an optional alarm can be triggered.

The Ultimate range received a warm welcome at the 2008 Mobile World Conference in Barcelona.

“We received very good feedback from our operator partners around the world,” Cavey said.

The company is “very confident” about the Australian launch and anticipates strong support from local dealers.

“They are all quite excited about the Video Out and HSUPA,” Cavey said.

The Ultimate supersedes the Jasjam, which was the first and top selling PDA on the Telstra Next G network.

“We sold just over 100,000 units here within 15-months, up until December 2007,” Cavey said.

The i-mate Ultimate 8502 and 9502 will be available from selected Telstra and Telstra licensed shops from March 28, retailing for $999 RRP and $1,099 RRP respectively.

They will be available on a Telstra $100 post paid plan over 24-months from April 7.