Dell Smoke, Thunder, Lightning: The way you phone me is frightening

A leak has turned into a Dell-uge, with three new phones: the Qwerty candybar Smoke, Android 2.1 Thunder, and Windows Phone 7 Lightning

Nick Hide Managing copy editor
Nick manages CNET's advice copy desk from Springfield, Virginia. He's worked at CNET since 2005.
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Nick Hide
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Dell is working on some tempestuous new phones, if a leak -- more like a Dell-uge -- on Engadget proves true. The Windows Phone 7-packing Dell Lightning, the Android 2.1-toting Dell Thunder and the innovative Qwerty candybar Dell Smoke could well raise pulses -- and umbrellas -- should they make it to the UK. Knock on wood that they do.

Dell Thunder

The Lightning (pictured above) is a Qwerty slider with a difference -- it's portrait format, so it slides up instead of sideways, with a full Qwerty keyboard under the upright screen. The keys look tiny on Engadget's rendered images, but it is a 104mm (4.1-inch) screen, so fully open it'll be huge.

Inside is a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 3G, a 5-megapixel camera, 1GB of flash memory, GPS and full Flash support. It should be out towards the end of the year, as a launch handset for Windows Phone 7.

The Thunder (pictured right) is a chunky Android phone with a similarly mahoosive 104mm screen, a beefy 8-megapixel camera and HSDPA for Web-surfing faster than any atmospheric electrical phenomenon you could mention. Dell has apparently added its own 'Stage' UI to Android 2.1, which polishes up the menus and pulls in social-network stuff, in the same vein as Sony Ericsson's effort on the X10.

Dell Smoke

The Smoke (pictured left) is a genuinely interesting design -- the first candybar phone we've seen to cram in a Qwerty keyboard. It's not due out for another year, so there's no guarantee it'll ever see the light of day, but it's scheduled to run the next version of Android, 2.2, if it does. Engadget reckons it'll sport an 800MHz processor, a 5-megapixel camera and HSPA.

Less exciting but also bundled in with these leaked photos and specs are the Dell Looking Glass, a 7-inch tablet PC running Android 2.1, and the Dell Aero, a curvy budget phone with an older edition of Google's OS.

None of this is official, so we'll get on the blower to Dell and let you know weather (ha!) these phones are coming to the UK.