New Cell Phone Fights Dirty Germs

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Motorola Inc. has created a next-generation germ-resistant multimedia phone, the company announced Monday.

The company's newest i870 mobile device, which boasts MP3 player, video recording, GPS and two-way radio functions, also protects against bacteria with silver ion technology from Agion Technologies Inc., according to a recent news release.

"Silver has a centuries-long history of use as an anti-microbial, and our compound has been incorporated into a variety of applications," J. Ladd Greeno, president and CEO of Agion, said in a statement.

"The built-in anti-microbial coating of the i870 will help to ensure effective and long-lasting protection of the handset from damaging microbes."

Agion Technologies, a player in the engineered anti-microbial solutions market, has integrated its patented non-toxic anti-microbial coating into the painted surfaces on Motorola's i870 to prevent the growth of mold and other bacteria (search), the company said.

Apart from Agion's advanced anti-germ technology, the i870 also makes available many multimedia features as well as a range of communications functions, according to the release.

The Bluetooth (search)-enabled i870 offers users a 1.3 megapixel camera with camcorder capabilities.

Customers can snap still photos or utilize the recorder to film up to an hour of video content, and can then send images or video clips via a multimedia messaging service (a feature that is dependent on network and subscription coverage).

The device features a music player function, enabling users to play MP3 files stored on their phones (or memory cards), regardless of whether the handset is closed.

A removable Transflash (search) memory card, available with 128MB, 256MB or 512MB storage capacity, also allows users to store and access a range of multimedia applications, including music, video and photos, the company said.

Motorola's media phone supports most Bluetooth profiles. The company's Hello Moto Web site offers specific information regarding Motorola Bluetooth phone and accessory compatibility, according to the release.

The i870 connects via WiDEN (Motorola's Wide Integrated Digital Enhanced Network), allowing users to send data up to four times faster than currently possible on the company's iDEN network, the company said.

Depending on the user's network subscription information, the phone also offers a Selective Dynamic Group Call function, allowing users to set up 20-person strong two-way radio talk groups.

In addition, the i870 incorporates Motorola's MotoTalk, an all-digital walkie-talkie service that lets users outside of the coverage area manually transfer to a two-way radio-to-radio communication mode.

The service, available within a range of up to six miles and between compatible phones, is dependent upon conditions such as terrain and weather, the company said.

"The Motorola i870 combines communication and entertainment into one handset that gives users the ability to take pictures, record important moments and play their favorite music," Peter Aloumanis, director of the U.S. Markets Division for Motorola's iDEN Mobile Devices, said in a statement.

"In addition to its distinctive combination of mobile features, the i870 handset incorporates the protective AgION anti-microbial technology."

The i870 is available for purchase through all Sprint Nextel distributors (including retail locations), where it sells for $299.99 with a two-year service agreement.

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