GoogleHTC Dream -

By william on 5:08 PM

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SINGAPORE will be the first country in Asia to get the Google phone.

Telco SingTel announced on Thursday that the cellphone, known as the HTC Dream, will be available 'soon'.

There were no further details on pricing or when exactly the phone would be available to buy.

The phone, which has been highly talked about and anticipated by some, is another score for SingTel, which first brought in the Apple iPhone 3G exclusively last August.

The HTC Dream uses Google's free, open source software, Android. This means that manufacturers need not pay Google for the software, which may result in cheaper handsets for consumers.

The strategy of exclusive tie-ins may be the industry's latest way of retaining and attracting mobile phone customers, especially since mobile number portability - when a user can keep his number despite changing carriers - was introduced here last June.

When contacted, a MobileOne spokesman said the company had been in discussions with phone manufacturer HTC, as well as other manufacturers of Android phones.

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