As expected, HTC today announced the Touch Diamond, a Windows Mobile 6.1 smartphone featuring a seriously overhauled touch-friendly interface and slim 10.7mm profile. The Taiwanese company launched the phone at a press event in London and announced that it will be available on UK carrier Orange in June, with other carriers and regions to follow thereafter. No word was given on availability in the US - HTC traditionally releases unlocked GSM versions of its handsets and also has released both GSM and CDMA phones through the major US carriers.
Touch Diamond features a 2.8" touch screen running HTC's new TouchFLO 3D gesture-based interface. From the looks of the photos and videos released today, Touch Diamond should officially claim the title of, "Closest thing to iPhone yet that runs WinMo" when it launches next month. Seriously, it looks pretty slick - the menus are attractive and seem pretty easy to use, and the scrolling and transitioning look smooth. HTC says that smooth business is thanks to an onboard 3D graphics processor; I'd believe it.
So far the two things I've seen that I don't like about Touch Diamond are the silly "thumb swirl" gesture for zooming and HTC's insistance on using their USB-to-audio adapter instead of just building a headphone jack into the hardware. There was also no mention of "Raphael ... aka Touch Pro," the rumored second version of Touch Diamond said to feature a slide-out QWERTY board.
Check out the video and photos, and then head on over to HTC.com for full specs and a multimedia walkthrough. I'll get you more info on unlocked and/or US releases of Touch Diamond just as soon as HTC lets me know.