RealTime IT News

Casio PhoneMate Unveils First Email Phone

Casio PhoneMate announced the IT-380 E-Mail Link, a telephone answering device that also lets users check their email.

The IT-380 uses a three-line, 18-character liquid crystal display (LCD) to indicate unread e-mail messages.

Stephen Knuth, president of Casio PhoneMate, said: "The IT-380 serves as a powerful filter for e-mail users, who increasingly need to be able to identify and act upon important messages. The IT-380 is ideal for those who'd prefer to avoid the hassle of using their PC to dial up an ISP or online service, just to check email. This is clearly a task for which the phone is far better suited than the PC."

One feature of the IT-380 is an alert signal that tells the user when new email has arrived by flashing a light. Recipients can view the subject line and sender's name--and take appropriate action either by calling the sender or signing on to their Internet Service Provider.

As an all-digital answering machine, the IT-380 features 14 minutes of record time, message preview, selective erase and save, skip/repeat messages, and variable speed playback. A unique Message File feature lets the user save important messages, separating them from the normal message queue.

The IT-380 will be in specialty retail, consumer electronics and computer stores in the second quarter of 1998. The estimated street price is expected to be $149.