Dell Venue Pro Smartphone Could Be Available This Week

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Dell's much-anticipated Venue Pro smartphone may be available this week, TmoNews reported over the weekend.

Dell is releasing the Windows Phone 7 version of the Dell Venue Pro smartphone Monday, Nov. 8, at all Microsoft stores nationwide, according to the TmoNews report. Dell will begin selling the Venue Pro directly from its Website on Nov. 15, according to the report.

A spokesperson from Dell declined to comment on the details of the report.

The rumor comes on the same day AT&T is officially launching the Samsung Focus and HTC Surround Windows Phone 7 handsets in the U.S. The Venue Pro will be available through T-Mobile in time for the holiday season, Dell announced during the Windows Phone 7 launch last month.

The Dell Venue Pro was the showpiece device on display at the launch and features a 4.1-inch AMOLED capacitive multi-touch screen, a front-facing, sliding QWERTY keyboard, a 1-GHz Snapdragon CPU, 720p HD video, a scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass display, and a 5.0 megapixel camera.

Dell is expected to make an Android variant of its smartphone known as the Dell Venue available next year as well.

On Friday The Wall Street Journal reported that Dell employees will be offered the upcoming Dell Venue Pro in exchange for 25,000 company-issued Blackberry devices. Eventually Dell will also offer phones powered by Google Android software, according to the report.

“Clearly in this decision we are competing with RIM, because we’re kicking them out,” Dell CFO Brian Gladden said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal . Gladden said the switch will save the company about 25 percent in mobile communication costs, primarily by eliminating BlackBerry servers.

The rejection of RIM's devices, which claim the largest share in the enterprise mobile market, comes as Dell's mobile device strategy has increasingly emphasized enterprise networking. The company has OEM agreements with Brocade, Juniper, and more recently, Aruba, whose products' it markets under the PowerConnect B-series, J-series and W-series brands.

In addition, Dell hired industry veteran Dario Zamarian as its vice president and general manager for networking in September, which is the first time Dell has named a dedicated vice president to that division.

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