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U.S. Cellular takes new Android phones into battle
By Anna Marie Kukec | Daily Herald Columnist

Chicago-based U.S. Cellular will launch the new HTC Desire smartphone.

 

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Published: 8/13/2010 12:01 AM

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Chicago-based U.S. Cellular is taking aim against Verizon Wireless and other providers as it introduces more Android-based smartphones to its lineup.

This week, U.S. Cellular debuted HTC's Desire, the second of five such phones to be launched this year.

The Samsung Acclaim arrived in its stores last month and the provider will launch three other Android phones, another from Samsung and two from LG, later this year, said U.S. Cellular spokeswoman Claire Prendergast.

"One of the most attractive features of all these phones is their access to thousands of applications that allow customers to do more with their phones," said Prendergast. "The HTC Desire runs on the Android-operating system and has access to more than 80,000 apps on the Android Market."

The HTC Androids have been strong contenders against Schaumburg-based Motorola's Droid and Apple's iPhone portfolios, and all fast-selling phones.

The Desire is also preloaded with U.S. Cellular applications, such as City ID, Tone Room Deluxe and Your Navigator Deluxe, as well as the provider's Overage Protection, Free Incoming Calls and Battery Swap programs.

"We believe the HTC Desire will be a very attractive option for those looking to take their wireless experience to the next level," she said.

The Desire has a fast Web browser on a 3G network. Its slim design has a 3.7-inch touch-screen that shows streaming video and graphics in vivid detail. The phone also delivers a 5 megapixel, autofocus camera with flash and integrated GPS. Its Wi-Fi capabilities allow users to connect to the Internet via wireless hot spots at home or on the road. Customers can upload pictures and videos to a variety of social networking and sharing sites including Facebook, Flickr, and YouTube.

Surfing: Arlington Heights-based Restaurant.com just reached a milestone of 15,000 restaurants that provide discounts on its website.

•Naperville-based Napersoft, a provider of communications management software, and Yaeger Solutions, a provider of document automation applications, will partner on a new document automation and personalized customer communication solution for companies.

•Chicago-based BrightTag.com this week launched to provide a data-sharing solution for managing tracking tags and data transmission to third parties. BrightTag's platform enables website owners and their agencies to control and protect their data. Clients participating in the launch include P&G, AccuQuote and Sears Holdings.

•Orbitz for Business (www.orbitzforbusiness.com), the corporate travel brand of Orbitz Worldwide, this week partnered with trip management service TripIt (www.tripit.com). Available immediately to Orbitz for Business customers, TripIt helps road warriors share travel itineraries with colleagues and clients in their social and professional networks, and provides travel tools as well.

•Chicago-based OptionMonster.com, a provider of news and trading ideas for do-it-yourself investors, this week launched Options Tactician, a subscription service for traders who prefer investing strategies based on fundamental and technical analysis.

•Follow Anna Marie Kukec on LinkedIn and Facebook and as AMKukec on Twitter.