HTC has partnered with Optus to release the first mobile phone in Australia based on Google's Android platform, the Dream.
Boasting a large touch screen and an intuitive user interface, HTC's Dream is set to target early adopters rather than typical consumers or business users. The open source Android operating system is the key feature, along with instant access to a range of Internet services including the suite of Google applications — Gmail, Google Maps, Google Talk, Google Calendar and Google Search.
The Dream will be available from the 16 February on a range of Optus plans. It will not be sold outright, though Optus has confirmed the handset will not be network locked. Despite Optus being the only carrier to launch the Dream, there is no exclusivity period.
The Dream will be available to purchase on four plans, including two timeless plans. A $59 Internet Cap plan includes $350 worth of calls and text and 500MB of data, while a $79 Internet Cap plan includes $550 worth of calls, unlimited text and 700MB of data. Two timeless plans offer 1.5GB ($113.95 per month) and 3GB ($129) data allowances respectively.
Optus offers all plans on either 12 or 24 month contracts, with monthly handset repayments differing depending on the length of the plan. For more information on these plans, check out Optus's dedicated Dream page.
Optus confirmed the Dream will not run on its 900MHz 3G network, and will only operate on the 2100MHz band.
Key features of the touch screen–equipped Dream include a full, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 3G connectivity and a 3.2-megapixel camera. It also features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and a navigational trackball, as well as access to the Android Market, where users can download a variety of applications.
[Editor's note: updated 5 February, removing incorrect plan and data use information and correcting details of HTC's arrangement with Optus.]