Motorola aims at hard-core texters with their newest phone, the first in their iDEN line of budget mobile phones. The Clutch is one of an increasing number of cheap mobile phones with full QWERTY keyboards for texting. While their more expensive smartphone brothers and sisters are backing away from physical keyboards, cheap texting mobiles are flocking to it.
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It's not hard to see why. Physical keyboards are a lot cheaper than touchscreen ones, and a lot easier to use for texting than a traditional phone pad. The Clutch isn't really a new or innovative phone in that regard, but it does look to be a cheap and impressively durable machine. Motorola brags that the phone was built to 'military' specifications for durability.
While I highly doubt Motorola managed to find military specifications for texting cell phones, the Clutch does look to be a tough little trooper. It's not too powerful in terms of hardware (only 20 mb of memory) but the Clutch is expected to be very inexpensive when it is released in Q2 2009.
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Considering the popularity of dedicated texting phones, I find it hard to believe no one has released a budget mobile with a touchscreen keyboard. It wouldn't have to be prohibitively expensive, and it would sell well with the people that hate flip out keyboards, but don't want to shell out the big bucks for a smartphone.