Online retailers are attempting to sell HTC’s new Google Android-based mobile phones to Australian consumers via online auction house eBay, though no Australian telco is prepared for their use, according to a ZDNet report.
The phone is so far officially sold only via T-Mobile in the USA, though some international releases are expected later this year. ZDNet says one Australian eBay vendor has priced the phone at more than A$1000, while those from overseas sellers could in some cases be bought for as little as US$500 (A$780).
The Australian vendor claimed the phone would be supplied unlocked and could be used on a number of Australian networks, including Vodafone, Virgin Mobile, Optus and Telstra.However, while the phone has quad-band GSM access, it supports 3G networks only at 2100MHz. This would preclude its use on Telstra’s 850MHz Next G network, and limit it to the metro-only 3G nets of Vodafone and Optus.
Telstra advised against bringing the Android phone in, and the other networks said they had not tested it. Unlike Apple’s wildly successful iPhone, the HTC “G1” Android phone has a pullout qwerty keyboard. It’s supported by the online Android Market, where users can download applications from developers around the world.