T-Mobile announced the Motorola Charm early last month and we expected the device to launch on July 21st, but test devices were rumored to have issues and the release date was moved back to August. Most sources now agree that T-Mobile could launch the Charm on August 25, but there is still conflicting information about the retail pricing.
Originally T-Mobile was scheduled to offer the Charm for free as part of a special back-to-school promotion, but there is no guarantee that sale will still happen. Demo units started to appear in stores last month listing the Charm for $74.99 with 2-year contract and $269.99 off-contract, but newer displays now show the phone at $189.99 with 2-year contract and $309.99 off-contract.
Based on the current T-Mobile Android lineup, I believe the Charm will launch at $189. This places it between the myTouch Slide ($179) and Samsung Vibrant ($199), which is where the phone belongs based on its performance. The Charm packs quite a punch with a 600 MHz OMAP3 processor which supports Adobe’s Flash 10.1, a claim the Slide phone can’t make.
A full retail price around $300 would make the Charm one of the lowest priced Android phones off-contract. This means it would pair nicely with one of the Even More Plus plans which require no annual contract.
Motorola said during their recent Q2 2010 earnings call that they had already shipped Charm units to T-Mobile, so it sounds like only software tweaks are holding up the release at this point. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see yet another delay, but hopefully a listing on the official T-Mobile site is a good sign.