The big news is that the smartphone is now, well, smarter, all thanks to the Android, the latest operating system to electrify the cellular market.

While there are other Smartphone operating systems already out there – Symbian, Blackberry, Microsoft Windows Mobile and iPhone – an Android phone will have the full technological might of search giant Google behind it.
This means Android-powered smartphones can do more, at even faster speeds, as your phone becomes your personal go-to pal with the brain capacity of a cyborg. Watching Youtube clips? Calculating the best workout times during ovulation? Yawn. Sorry, but that’s now considered entry-level smartphone ability. What’s exciting is the advance-level magic such as synching all your Google apps (G-mail, G-talk, Google Map, Picasa Web, etc) with the phone via 3G, and which the Android does.
The telcos here – SingTel, Starhub and M1 – are supportive to the phone-makers here, and Android machines are being progressively launched this year, with one model more exciting than the previous. For example, Sony Ericsson, which just launched their Xperia X2, which is Windows Mobile-powered, will also launch the Android-powered Xperia X10 by next month.
Google Nexus One, which is said to be faster than the iPhone 3G in webpage-loading over wi-fi, has also just launched its much lauded device.
The Data Game
Clockwise from top - the Motorola Dext, the HTC Tattoo and the LG GW620
LG GW620
QWERTY slide-out keyboard, 5MP autofocus camera, 3.1” touchscreen, micro SD port, 3.5mm headphone jack
QWERTY slide-out keyboard, 5MP camera with LED flash, 3” screen, micro SD port, 3.5mm headphone jack
Qwerty virtual board, 3.2 MP autofocus camera, 2.8” touchscreen, 3.5mm stereo headset jack, FM radio, expandable microSD memory
* Size matters. The screen we mean. The high-res 3.1” is a luxury.
* Likes being fingered. The touchscreen is capacitive, meaning it responds only to fingers, so no worries of accidental pocket-calling.
*Hot Bod: Sleek with soft-curved edges, this is the handsomest of the lot.
*Hand job. The keyboard slides smoothly and the device fits snugly in the palm.
*Nice Apps. Its SNS (Social Networking Sites) Manager allows quick access to Facebook and Twitter. And photo-tagging is much easier with the Auto Face-Tagging and Face to Action functions.
*Lithe Figure. Cute, compact and quirky, it is svelt enough not to clutter the bag.
*To The Point. Functions are straightforward and fun to play with while navigating the interface.
*Foreskin. You can even design your own phone skins (“Tattoo”, get it?)
*Multiple Org. Apps (calls, emails, texts, photos and status updates) are consolidated into one view, making it much easier and neater to keep tabs on your contacts.
* Fat-face. At 163g, this is the heftiest of the lot. And the sliding motion is jerky, not smooth. Not sexy.
* Changing positions: App-switching is sluggish and the capacitive screen can get temperamental, taking a while to respond
* Performance Anxiety: The battery heats up very quickly.
*Hang-Ups. Apps tend to hang when multiple programs are running and there was a slight time-lag between selection and response.
*Overly Sensitive. The screen is non-capacitive, making it sensitive to touch by other objects, and the Home and Back buttons are especially so.
*Poor Performance: The 3.2 MP camera with no flash makes it a disappointment considering that the Tattoo isn’t the first HTC Android device.
*Is It In Yet? Fingering the right letters on the virtual QWERTY keyboard took time to get into, especially so it did take a while to type out a text message.
*Too Small. At 2.8”, the screen is smallest of the Androids. It is also non-capacitive, so be careful about it touching other objects.
Exclusively at all SingTel stores
$0-$98 on any 3G Flexi Plans
$0-$298 on SingTel’s free incoming call plans
$598 (without plan) and available at all LG Concept and Telco stores
$598 (without plan).
Available exclusively in all telco stores and authorised resellers.

 *Prices are accurate as at press time and subject to change without prior notice.