A British company that specialises in mobile messaging has launched a pair of phones in a bid to help people in the developing world keep in touch.
Synchronica's Mobile Gateway software comes with the phones, and offers push email and Microsoft Exchange support, as well as the ability to send text messages to an email address and vice versa.
The Synchronica MessagePhone QS150 has a Qwerty keyboard and a style we're going to charitably call 'retro'. It's a tri-band GPRS phone, which means no 3G or other fancy-dancy first-world features.
Its sibling, the MessagePhone QS200, ramps up the specs with a decadent Western FM radio, and it's a quad-band phone with support for the 2.75G EDGE network.
Both phones sport Bluetooth, media players and 1.3-megapixel cameras, as well as microSD card slots that support up to a 4GB card.
Synchronica said it launched the MessagePhones because it saw a hole for affordable phones that could potentially replace the trek to the Internet cafe in countries where many people have mobiles rather than landlines. By throwing the messaging infrastructure into the bundle, it should make it easier for operators to roll out services like push email to their customers.
Synchronica is based in Royal Tunbridge Wells, with much more appealing-looking offices around the world.