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T-Mobile Sidekick 4G

Though Microsoft and Danger are shutting down the old Sidekick data service on May 31, the messaging handheld lives on in the new T-Mobile Sidekick 4G. The smartphone will be available starting April 20 for $99.99 with a two-year contract and after a $50 mail-in rebate.

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New features

The Sidekick 4G adds Android 2.2.1 Froyo and a touch screen. There are also enhanced messaging features, including Group Text and Cloud Text, which is a Web-based app that lets you send and receive messages.

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Keyboard and display

The handset features a 3.5-inch, 480x800-pixel touch screen with a "pop-tilt" slider design. When open, you get access to the five-row QWERTY keyboard, which we found to be excellent. It's roomy, and the keys provide a nice tactile feedback.

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Back

On back of the phone, you'll find the 3-megapixel camera. The Sidekick 4G will be available in two colors: pearl magenta (shown here) and matte black.

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Right side

The right side of the device (or the top when held in landscape mode) features a Micro-USB port and a camera button.

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Left side

On the left side (bottom in landscape), you get a volume rocker and a power/lock button.

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Picture quality

We weren't expecting much from the phone's 3-megapixel camera, but we were truly impressed by the sharp picture quality.

Updated:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNET
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