Alltel's Answer to the iPhone?
Alltel doesn't build hardware of course. Anything they do has to be from the "back end"– the services they supply. With their new "celltop" service, it looks like they want to add lots of eye candy to the phones that can handle it.
Alltel is pretty well regarded in the Southeast regional market where they compete, coming out first in some customer satisfaction surveys. They happen to be my cell provider (for now) so I was pretty interested in seeing what "celltop" was. Looks like Alltel is trying to jam as much "look and feel" of the iPhone into their phones as possible.
At the moment they only offer this new service on the Samsung U520, which is not iSync compatible. Mark/Space's Missing Sync doesn't even support it. So it's a no-go for me. However, the "coming soon" section lists the Motorola RAZR v3m and Motorola KRZR, which are or may be iSync compatible.
Alltel may be getting something really right, though: thee web site suggests that development of new cells will be, if not open, at least be straightforward and welcomed by the company:
I have to wonder if these phones (especially the Samsung) have the processing horsepower necessary to make these "cells" work with any sort of snap.
Will it have scrolling like the iPhone? No. Will it be as elegant as the iPhone? No. Will it cost anywhere near as much? No.