Motorola i1

Sprint announced this morning that it will make available the Motorola i1 -- the first Android push-to-talk device -- starting July 25 for $149.99 after contract and rebate. It initially will be sold through direct shipping, business sales and telesales, and will hit all remaining Sprint sales channels starting Aug. 8.

The Motorola i1 (see our hands-on) is a fairly basic Android device, sporting a 3.1-inch touchscreen, 5MP camera, the Swype keyboard, and a host of business applications.

Full presser after the break.

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – July 19, 2010 – Industry-leading Push-to-Talk with access to thousands of Android™ applications for less than $150? Now that is taking care of business!

Sprint (NYSE: S) today shared pricing and timing for the world’s first Android-powered smartphone with Nextel Direct Connect® – it will be available first on Sunday, July 25, through direct ship sales channels, including Business Sales, telesales (1-800-SPRINT1) and Web sales ( for $149.99 with a new line or eligible upgrade, two-year service agreement and after a $50 mail-in rebate (taxes & surcharges excluded). It will then be available in all remaining Sprint sales channels beginning on Sunday, Aug. 8.

With more than 17 years of experience, Sprint is the undisputed industry leader in push-to-talk, serving the world’s largest push-to-talk community with millions of Nextel Direct Connect subscribers on the fastest national push-to-talk network. More U.S. workers communicate in less than a second with Nextel Direct Connect than with any other push-to-talk service.

With solid body construction that meets military specifications for protection against dust, shock, vibration and blowing rain1, Motorola i1 is designed for those who work and play hard. It offers the Android 1.5 operating system, and automatically syncs and integrates office and personal information such as emails, calendar appointments and contacts.

“Motorola i1 is the only Android device to offer Nextel Direct Connect as well as the latest smartphone features and the ability to withstand some of the harshest environments,” said Fared Adib, vice president – Product Development, Sprint. “This phone brings a new level of smartphone to our Nextel customers making it one of the most efficient devices to get work done, and our customers who rely on Direct Connect will appreciate this feature-packed phone that doesn’t miss on must-have features like Wi-Fi and a 5 megapixel camera.”

Motorola i1 enhances the Nextel Direct Connect experience with the ability to view who is calling regardless of what application you are in, whether you are managing your emails, checking your calendar, composing messages or viewing media.

Motorola i1 also offers a variety of robust business and entertainment applications through Android Market™, and when combined with the built-in Wi-Fi capabilities, it provides a great view of what’s happening both personally and professionally. Applications like Scan2PDF Mobile 2.0, Unit Converter – ConvertPad and RealCalc Scientific Calculator can help get work done, while staying connected to friends through Facebook™ or Tweeting using an easily customizable Twitter™ app like Touiteur.

In addition, Sprint partner applications available for businesses on the Motorola i1 include:

Xora™ mobile workforce management solutions provide businesses with real-time visibility into field operations, and helps automate payroll and job workflow processes. The Android version of Xora Time Track™ includes new features like photo barcode scanning and signature capture, eliminating the need to purchase additional hardware to support such capabilities.

TeleNavTrack™ uses the latest technologies to make mobile workforce and asset management reliable and affordable for businesses of all sizes. It lets businesses use wireless barcode scanning to track inventory and assets, manage deliveries, better predict arrival times, change schedules on-the-fly and deploy workers. It can also reduce paperwork by allowing the mobile workforce to complete invoices, orders and timesheets on the device.
Sprint Mobile Locator is a Web-based solution that allows businesses to easily track and locate workers, and view a mapping display on a PC in near real-time using a wireless phone’s built-in GPS capabilities.

Key features include:

Popular business tools such as Microsoft® Document Viewer and corporate sync ensure Word or PowerPoint files can be accessed on the go
Message entry is a breeze with both Android standard virtual keyboard and Swype™ virtual keyboards being offered
A 5 megapixel camera with flash, geo-tagging and panoramic capabilities provides crisp photos and clearly displays them on the vibrant 3.1-inch HVGA screen, and video can also be recorded and stored on a provided microSD for sharing or future viewing straight from the device
The Android browser allows you to see web pages and Flash 8-enabled sites in full view using Wi-Fi, and the latest Opera Mini 5 browser enables quick browsing over the Nextel National Network and Wi-Fi

With the new Sprint Free Guarantee, the most robust satisfaction guarantee in the wireless industry, customers can try a new line of service with Sprint for 30 days. If they aren't completely satisfied with Sprint during that period, they can cancel service and return their device to be reimbursed for the device purchase and activation fee, get the early termination fee waived, get a full refund for monthly service plan recurring charges incurred and get all associated taxes and fees waived.

In addition, Sprint will waive the restocking fee for new customer exchanges as part of this policy. Refund excludes usage not included in the plan, premium content, third-party billing and international charges.

Application development information for Motorola i1 is available on the Sprint Application Developer web site at Sprint offers developers a free sandbox with iDEN capabilities to test their apps. Sprint is a charter member of the Open Handset Alliance™ and the Sprint Application Developer Program has been providing tools for third-party developers since Sprint first launched the Wireless Web on its phones in 2001.


Reader comments

Motorola i1 officially coming to Sprint on July 25 for $150


I guess it didn't sell to well on boost. I looked at it for my brother but when you put this phone up between the blackberry, this phone will get looked over. Main reason, this phone is on boost's old iden slow network and the blackberry is on cdma faster network. So I say this phone Hardward wise is better even with an older Android OS but the slow iden network does not justify the features this phone has.

Well, it is push to talk.

To be honest, isn't there an Android application that allows you to do push to talk?

Yes. It's called TiKL. I've tried it and it works well but you are limited to only Android users while this phone is great for all Nextel users. It's not as popular as it was in the early 2000s but I guess there's still a market out there for Nextel.

Just what we don't need...

Is Sprint going to come out with something more like a sequel to the Hero? For those of us who don't want a pocket monster like the EVO (or to pay the 4G/Evo tax), A Sprint version of the HTC Incredible sure would be nice.

Being a Sprint dealer for more than 13 years, I can tell you that there is a market for this phone. Many of my customers are trucking and maintenance companies. The still make extensive use of the PTT on their phones. A lot of the people in supervisory positions and above have been asking us about this phone for months. It is sleek enough to give the average customer a nice phone that will fit in their pocket and yet rugged enough to stand up to the use of a construction worker! Motorola has included exchange support and the Opera Mini browser does more than an acceptable job of web browsing at iDen Speeds.

Wait, What?

This phone was "supposed" to be $150 off contract. Please, if you are looking at this, use your brain and pay $50 more and get the soon to be delivered Samsung EPIC 4G. This would have been an interesting low cost choice if you could buy it off contract and use a pre-paid plan - like cricket - now it looks like the plague.