HP unveils iPaq 500 Wi-Fi handset

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HP unveils iPaq 500 Wi-Fi handset

Latest smartphone offers voice control and remote admin.

HP has unveiled a mobile device featuring Wi-Fi Internet access, VoIP and speech recognition at the 3GSM show in Barcelona. 

The iPaq 500 series Voice Messenger offers email and Web browsing, and is powered by Microsoft's Windows Mobile 6. The device supports Wi-Fi and GSM/Edge networks.

HP entered the smartphone market nearly two years ago, but most of its early models looked like PDAs with a mobile phone slapped on. The iPaq 500 series is the firm's first model to more closely resemble a consumer mobile phone.

Targeting enterprise users, the device offers a new over-the-air remote administration service that HP obtained through its acquisition of Bitfone.

The service lets administrators remotely access the smartphones, erase data and alter network access settings if the phones are lost or stolen.

To make up for the lack of a keyboard, HP said that the device recognised over 20 voice commands that allow for interface navigation and email dictation.

The device features Bluetooth connectivity and 128MB of storage along with a Micro SD card expansion slot. HP estimates six hours talk time battery life for the smartphone.

The iPaq 500 is slated for availability in the US this spring. HP did not give a time table for European availability.
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