The T-Mobile Comet: What You Need to Know
Why the T-Mobile Comet is a Big Story
This tiny, little wisp of a smartphone could turn out to be one of the biggest stories of the year. Not because the T-Mobile Comet is the best at anything in particular but because of what it ultimately stands for.
The T-Mobile Comet is made by Huawei in China. It’s small in stature but jam-packed with features:
On the outside, the T-Mobile Comet is really small: 4.1 by 2.2 by 0.5 inches and weighs only 3.6 ounces. It easily fits into any pocket or purse you can think of.
On the inside there’s a full-blown, modern-day, 3G-fast, world phone running Android 2.2 – that’s the latest version of the now infamous, open-source operating system. There is also Wi-fi, stereo Bluetooth, turn-by-turn directions via GPS, a 3 MP camera, Swype keyboard, 2GB memory card and just about anything you can think of when you’re talking about modern smartphones..
And the major feature list doesn’t end there. The Comet is also a Wi-fi hot spot. It allows you to connect other devices (as many as eight) to T-Mobile’s over-the-air 3G network. T-Mobile is now calling that network 4G. Let’s split the difference and call HSPA+ 3.5G.
Now, let’s get down to the nitty gritty. The T-Mobile Comet comes with a somewhat dated processor chip chugging along at 528MHz. Even though the phone runs Android 2.2 – and with 2.2 you can theoretically use Adobe Flash – this processor is actually too slow run Flash. The Google Marketplace won’t even show it to you as an option for downloading. And if you use a live wallpaper background (like the one that comes loaded as standard equipment) you can actually watch the processor working hard to keep up with everything that’s moving around on the screen.
Despite that cost-cutting measure on Huawei’s part, I found the Comet to be a terrific smartphone. I never felt that the processor or the teeny 2.8-inch screen ever slowed me down at all. Build quality is absolutely top-notch. The phone pretty much runs like a top. Especially if you’re the type who likes using your cell phone as a phone. Voice calls sound great in both directions. And the Comet is able to generate enough volume to let you hear the other party even in a moving NYC subway train. And a big shout-out for the battery pack they’ve included. Expect a full day (or a little more) of per charge.
But it’s best feature is its price. If you decide to “buy” the phone online the Comet is FREE with the usual 2-year service/voice/data contract. In T-Mobile stores it’s a whopping10-bucks. $199 without a nasty old contract. Plus, the carrier has a special data plan – for customers new to smartphones: $10 per month for 200 megabytes.
That makes the T-Mobile Comet a paradigm changer. Remember, the bulk of cell phones purchased today are still priced at under $100. And the Comet is WAY under $100 for a full-featured Android smartphone. Go to any U.S. carrier’s Website and look at the list of “dumb” and “feature” phones they’re selling for a similar price. Why would anyone choose, say, a $50-$100 phone that does a few things well when they can get a taste of being a member of the “elite” smartphone users club and get a phone capable of providing 85% or so of the best there is. And for free!
The Comet is squarely aimed at attracting the millions who buy the cheapest phones they see. Now they can choose a great Android device (plus an affordable data plan) instead of what has been available to them up until now.
Pretty darn amazing for a free smartphone. I wonder what Huawei can do with a $200 device.
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