Sprint was very happy to announce during their press event at the CTIA 2010 that they are scheduled to sell the Sanyo Zio starting October 10. The release date is the same as that of the Samsung Transform droid phone. However, the Sanyo Zio is Sprint’s cheapest Android phone to date because it will be offered for free on a new 2-year contract or eligible service upgrade. You will be initially asked to pay $99.99 but there’s a $100 mail-in rebate!
Sprint is the second carrier to add the Sanyo Zio to their catalog. Cricket Wireless debut it first last August but they were selling it for $249.00. The Cricket version also shipped with Android OS 1.6 while Sprint’s Sanyo Zio will have Android OS 2.1 Eclair installed. Sanyo didn’t tinker with the design of this new Zio version for Sprint. It’s still the same sexy-thin Android phone measuring 0.5 inch in thickness and weighing at 3.7 ounces. Sprint is also preloading their new user customization app called Sprint ID on Sanyo Zio.
Features-wise, the Sanyo Zio is powered by a 600 Mhz Qualcomm MSM7227 processor which is what you can usually find in other mid-range Android phones like the HTC Aria and HTC Legend (reviewed in this site in July). This rather old CPU is however reinforced with a mighty 512MB of RAM for snappy processing power. Just don’t expect this phone to the best 3D gaming device! Like the new range of other Android phones, the Zio offers a 3.5-inch WVGA touch-screen capacitive display. Sorry, unlike the Samsung Transform, Sanyo Zio doesn’t have a QWERTY keyboard. But if you can live with that deficiency, go ahead and buy Sanyo Zio when it becomes available in your area. It’s an affordable android device. So price-wise, this is a winner. Just download free Android apps to beef up this handset to make it more useful in your day-to-day life.