updated 09:15 am EST, Mon November 2, 2009
Moto Milestone due for Europe Nov. 9
Motorola today confirmed an international version of the Droid that should also be the first Android phone with multi-touch. The Milestone uses a virtually identical design with an 854x480 touchscreen, 5-megapixel camera, GPS and Wi-Fi but switches to GSM, EDGE and HSPA for basic calls, 2G and 3G respectively. It currently doesn't support US 3G bands but should be available through at least O2 Germany (PDF) for the equivalent of $596 without a contract but with a discount.
Notably, the Milestone in a pre-release test appears to have built-in multi-touch input for features like the web browser. While Android 2.0 has the basic framework for multi-touch and is preloaded on both phones, the Droid only recognizes single inputs. The news suggests either that the Droid is releasing too soon for a full implementation or else that Google and Motorola have consciously removed multi-touch from the American phone. An unverified rumor claims that Google may be omitting the technology from the US to avoid patent disputes with Apple or to avoid direct competition.
The test phone also appears to omit Google Maps Navigation and may not have the feature for at least three months, although why this is the case is equally unknown. Google can provide directions in Europe but has only limited Street View support.