Speaking at the company's Developer Summit during the
, Ralph De La Vega, AT&T's president of mobility consumer products, explained that the company will start offering Android phones from
during the first half of 2010. Plans to sell two
phones, presumably the Pre and Pixi, are imminent as well.
Motorola CEO Sanjay Shah was one of many industry execs who briefly joined De La Vega on stage during his presentation and explained that his company's phone will be the first Android phone on AT&T's network.
Ma Bell, whose exclusive deal to sell
iPhone ends this year, nonetheless faces some major
. Earlier this week, Google unveiled its first phone, the
, naming AT&T's arch-rivals
During his keynote at the Palms Casino, De La Vega said that AT&T supports twice as many smartphones as its nearest competitor.
AT&T, which announced a multi-year development agreement with
earlier this week, is also focusing attention on its midrange phones and unveiled a new mobile platform -- dubbed Brew -- that will be built in conjunction with
"When we developed Brew, we wanted to make sure that developers could get down to the metal," said Paul Jacobs, Qualcomm's CTO. "It has got the functionality and the power to go on a higher-end device."
De La Vega explained that
will be AT&T's first Other Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) to use Brew. He hopes that by 2011, 90% of the company's quick messaging devices will use the new platform.
The telecom firm also unveiled a new software developer's kit and a new emerging devices lab in Austin, Texas.
"App growth is soaring," said De La Vega, adding that about 832 million mobile applications were downloaded in the U.S. last year, a nine-fold increase since 2007. "At the same time revenues from these downloads are increasing as well."
-- Reported by James Rogers in Las Vegas and Scott Moritz in New York