HP (NYSE:HPQ), the world’s largest PC manufacturer, is rumored to be launching a smartphone next week, running on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android mobile operating system, a new report said on Friday, adding that the new handset would be targeted at the BRIC countries.
According to the report from 9to5Google, the device could be priced at around $200 and would be released in more than one market. The report also said that Alberto Torres, SVP for mobility at HP, is leading the project.
As for the design, the report said that the smartphone could resemble the 5.5-inch Galaxy Note from Samsung (KRX:005935). However, HP is expected to take some cost-cutting measures to meet the $200 price point.
In December, The Information reported that HP had planned to release a new 6- to 7-inch smartphone for emerging markets. The smartphone was rumored to be sold off-contact for between $200 and $250.
HP CEO Meg Whitman also recently confirmed that the company was indeed building a smartphone.
“[HP has] to ultimately offer a smartphone, because in many countries in the world that is your first computing device,” 9to5Google quoted Whitman as saying. “You know, there will be countries around the world where people may never own a tablet or a PC or desktop. They will do everything on the smartphone. We’re a computing company, we have to take advantage of that form factor.”
While HP is has not yet confirmed the rumored smartphone, a report from Phone Arena has speculated what the device might offer. According to it, the upcoming HP smartphone could feature a screen with a 720x1280 resolution, a quad-core Marvell processor clocking at 1GHz speed and Android 4.2.2 out of the box.