INQ launches Android-based Facebook phones

The new phones come with integrated Facebook optimized homescreen and integrated chat

Mobile phone maker INQ has collaborated with Facebook on phones optimized for the social networking site, and the results are the Android-based INQ Cloud Touch and INQ Cloud Q.

The phones are built for people who use Facebook as their primary means of communication, according to INQ. The home screen comes with a feed for seeing friends' updates, pictures, videos and web pages. There are also one-touch links to Facebook Chat, Friends, Messages, Wall and Notifications. Facebook Events, which allows users to let people in their community know about upcoming events, will pop up in the Google calendar on both phones, according to INQ.

Smartphones and social networking have had a mutually beneficial relationship. Today, there are more than 200 million active users accessing Facebook through their mobile devices, according to Facebook.

The INQ Cloud Touch and INQ Cloud Q also come with streaming music service Spotify integrated; users can access the service's application via a dedicated key. To use Spotify on mobile phones, users have to sign up and pay a monthly fee for the Premium service, which is currently available in Finland, France, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the U.K. If Spotify isn't available, the client can still be used as a local music player.

INQ Cloud Touch and INQ Cloud Q use version 2.2 of Android.

The INQ Cloud Touch is powered by a 600MHz processor from Qualcomm, and comes with 3.5-inch capacitive touchscreen, a 5-megapixel camera, GPS and a microSD card slot.

The phone will be available in the U.K from April, through The Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy on most major operators. It is expected to be free on a £20 ($US32) monthly contract, according to INQ. Pricing without a contract is not available at this time.

The INQ Cloud Q has 2.6-inch display and QWERTY keyboard, and will start shipping in the third quarter. Price hasn't been determined yet.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

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Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
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