Let's all feign surprise now, as Dell has just gone official with its worst kept, though perhaps sexiest, secret ever. The former Mini 5 has been christened the Streak and is launching at the beginning of next month. The UK will be getting the first bite at this cherry, with the rest of Europe following soon thereafter and the US a disappointingly distant third with a launch "later this summer." If you've been living under a (Round) Rock, this is Dell's big foray into the smartphone market: a 5-inch supersized Android handset, housing a 1GHz Snapdragon, a 5 megapixel cam, 2GB of built-in memory (expandable via MicroSD) and a customized UI. Curiously, Dell's opting to market the Streak as "the ultimate portable tablet pc" and would prefer that this device, albeit fully equipped to carry out cellular calls like a phone, not be called a smartphone.

We got a chance to play with it during a briefing in London recently, and frankly, aside from the snazzier paintjob, there's nothing new to report. Just like the prototype unit we've previewed to exhaustion, the device on hand was running Android 1.6 and Dell's skinning team hadn't yet laid on the goodies that we've been promised. The battery is the same 1,530mAh cell as before, and we even managed to get the browser to crash in the exact same fashion that our own Streak exhibits on occasion. Now that's consistency. We're not being told the specific Android version that the Streak will ship with, but a couple of flavors are being mulled over right now. Till we get more info, we suggest sitting back, relaxing, and perusing the gallery below for the roaring red number that's currently on show. It won't be available at launch -- you can have any color so long as it's black -- but "a range of colors and designs" will swiftly follow to sate any aesthetic concerns. Video and full press release after the break.

Update: The Carphone Warehouse listing for the Streak shows Android 1.6 as the OS with an "OTA upgrade available soon." Pair that with word direct from Dell that Android 2.2 and Flash 10.1 are coming "later this year," and you can connect your own dots [Thanks, Azza].

Update 2: O2's website now has a precise date for us: June 4.

Dell Streak official: exclusive to O2 UK in early June

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Dell Streak official pics

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DELL STREAK TABLET ENTICES PEOPLE TO WATCH, SURF, CONNECT, LISTEN, AND PLAY ON 5" OF POWER AND PORTABILITY

· Streak to launch early June in the UK exclusively on O2

· Available at O2 stores, O2.co.uk, The Carphone Warehouse and later next month at Dell.co.uk

· U.S. availability to arrive later this summer

BRACKNELL, UK - May 25, 2010 – Today, Dell released plans for Streak, a 5-inch Android™-based Tablet designed to provide people the best "on-the-go" entertainment, social connection, and navigation experience. Early this June the Dell Streak will be available across the UK at O2 stores, O2.co.uk, The Carphone Warehouse, and later in the month at Dell.co.uk. Pricing and data plans for the UK will be announced by O2 ahead of availability. Later this summer, Dell plans to make Streak available in the U.S.

The Dell Streak is a compact and powerful companion for people who want to expand their ability to access their digital lives on the go, and realize tomorrow's technology today. The spacious 5-inch screen is ideal for experiencing thousands of Android Market™ widgets, games and applications, all without squinting or compromising portability. Built-in Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and available 3G connectivity brings easy access for downloading and listening to music, updating social networking status in real-time, and staying connected to friends and family through e-mail, text, IM, and voice calls.

On-the-go students, mobile professionals, and active families will find Streak's web-browsing capabilities as natural as a laptop. The 5-inch screen is large enough to present Web pages in their natural form, create a comfortable viewing experience, and make turn-by-turn navigation simple and safe. The Dell Streak leverages Qualcomm's Snapdragon™ solution with integrated 1GHz processor to combine basic functionality, performance, and benefits of a laptop in a pocket friendly size.

"The Dell Streak hits the sweet spot between traditional smartphones and larger-screen tablets," said Ron Garriques, president, Dell Communication Solutions Group. "Its unique size provides people new ways to enjoy, connect, and navigate their lives."

The Dell Streak was designed with the future in mind and will support over-the-air updates including platform upgrades, Adobe Flash 10.1 on Android™ 2.2 later this year, video chat applications and other software innovations.

Dell is a member of the Open Handset Alliance™ (OHA), a group of technology and mobile companies working together to accelerate innovation in mobility. Together, the OHA created Android, the first complete, open, and free mobile platform to provide people a richer, less expensive, and better mobile experience.

Key Features:

* Integrated Google Maps™ with turn-by-turn navigation, street and satellite views
· A full screen browsing experience with a 5-inch capacitive multi-touch WVGA display
· Easily integrated social media apps: Twitter™, Facebook, YouTube
· High resolution 5 MP camera, VGA front facing camera, removable battery, built-in Wi-Fi, 3G and Bluetooth connectivity options
· 2GB* of internal dedicated storage provides plenty of space to access and download Google Android Market's many options
· Packaged with cushions made from 100 percent sustainable, compostable bamboo

Specifications:

* Android platform complete with Android Market and Dell user interface enhancements
* ARM-based Processor: Qualcomm's powerful and efficient Snapdragon chipset and software platform with integrated 1GHz processor
* 3G + WiFi + Bluetooth
* UMTS / GPRS / EDGE class 12 GSM radio with link speeds of up to HSDPA 7.2 Mbps* / HSDPA
* 5 MP autofocus camera with dual LED flash. Easy point, shoot, and uploads to YouTube, Flickr, Facebook and more
* User accessible Micro SD expandable memory available up to 32 GB*. Store up to 42 movies* or 32,000 photos*, or 16,000 songs* with 32GB* Micro SD

Follow conversations in the blogosphere: #DellStreak

Key Links:

Images: www.dell.com/photos
Dell: www.dell.co.uk
O2: www.O2.co.uk
The Carphone Warehouse: www.carphonewarehouse.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/dell

About Dell:

Dell (NASDAQ: DELL) listens to its customers and uses that insight to make technology simpler and create innovative solutions that simplify daily activities and help people stay entertained, connected and in touch. Learn more at www.dell.com.



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Dell Streak official: exclusive to O2 UK (update: launches on June 4)