Mobile phone to kill iPod? Samsung debuts hard disk handset

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Just the other week we predicted that phone manufacturers would soon be giving up on stupidly expensive flash memory cards and kitting out their handsets with hard disks. These are of course significantly cheaper and, most importantly for the consumer, offer a great deal more storage.

They could in theory also render hard disk music devices like the iPod redundant as users can store their tunes on the handset’s hard disk and have no need for a secobnd device. Motorola’s recent deal with Apple to offer iTunes on its mobiles shows that the iPod’s manufacturer is also sensing that this could be the way in which the market, at least in Europe and the far east, is likely to develop.

Anyhow it seems we were right for Samsung has just announced the world’s first ever mobile with an integrated hard disk.

Unveiled yesterday at a Japanese telecoms show the SPH-V5400 is a clamshell type phone with a 1.5GB hard disk.

It comes with an integrated mega pixel camera, MP3 player and a TV out connection.

Another first is that the SPH-V5400 also features an FM transmitter to enable users to stream music from the phone to nearby FM radios. Sadly at the moment this type of feature is illegal to use in the UK thanks to the 1949 Wireless telegraphy act.

The main screen is a TFT screen – 240 pixel by 320 pixel – and the sub screen is an OLED – 128 pixel by 128 pixel.

We expect the first mobiles with hard disks to reach the UK by the middle of next year with Motorola along with the Japanese/Korean makers leading the way.

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