The gang at Engadget got a couple of early Christmas gifts: two working prototypes of the Dell Thunder. There’s a few surprises and they were impressed by the sleek curves on these models. Remember, a lot can change between now and customer shipping dates, so the chrome could go, the curves could go, the domed glass could go. The video nicely shows the prototypes’ form factor, although it’s hard to see the curved glass above the flat LCD screen.
There’s some discussion over what kind of screen and resolution the real Thunders will ship with. The prototypes appear to be using plain old LCD screens, not the OLEDs, AMOLEDs, or even SAMOLEDs that a high-end smartphone would sport. It’s also a good question what version of Android would ship with Thunder. Engadget got two prototypes, one running Donut (1.6) and the other Eclair (2.1). These were stock Android, no Dell Stage UI in view.
An even more interesting discussion is just which carriers would be stocking the Dell Thunder. Originally, AT&T would be selling them 4th quarter of 2010. That leak also mentioned a 4.1 inch OLED screen, Flash 10.1 (there’s your Froyo right there), and an Android Hulu app for video. But there are AWS test apps on the prototype, which suggests T-Mobile may be Thundering for inclusion. Plus there is a CDMA test suite, which screams Verizon, and more debug apps and tests “for quad-band GSM plus AT&T / Rogers / Telus / Bell and Europe-compatible 3G data.” But with GSM and CDMA tests aboard, could the Dell Thunder be a World Phone as well?
Engadget says the tests confirm a 1GHz Snapdragon QSM8250 CPU with Qualcomm Adreno graphics. They make some guesses about what ought to be under the curved chrome case, what isn’t working that should, and what surprisingly was working. I like the looks of this phone and wonder if Dell will keep this case or something similar.
Full Prototype Review at Engadget
Gallery of Dell Thunder Prototype Photos at Engadget (33 photos!)