image_30Over at the Boy Genius Report, the rumor mill is churning over leaked pictures of an (allegedly) upcoming Acer handset to be announced at the Mobile World Congress in a couple of weeks. The BGR speculates that this device could be an Android smartphone, but we think otherwise due to the lack of hardware keys on the device shown in the photos.

The grainy pictures reveal that this ‘swivel’ phone does not possess the necessary 5 hardware buttons that any Android based phone must have. It is worth noting that some of these hardware buttons could, theoretically, be replaced with on-screen softkeys, but no manufacturer has done this so far and the likelihood that Acer will be the first seems slim.

If Acer do bring this piece of kit to the MWC and it is indeed the first Android phone to replace the required hardware buttons with softkeys, we will be sure to get some hands on experience with it and, among other things, let you know how we rate the ‘swivel’ design. However, we’re not holding our breath at this point and expect the phone to instead be something akin to HTC’s Windows Mobile-powered Touch HD.

James Tromans
Contributing editor of, based in the U.K.