Taiwanese handset maker High Tech Computer (HTC) has developed a smartphone based on Microsoft's upcoming Windows Mobile 6 software that offers both a numeric keypad and a slide-out Qwerty keyboard.

The S710, announced at the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona, will be one of the first handsets from HTC to ship with Windows Mobile 6. The handset will hit European markets from Orange during the first half of the year and will be sold as the Orange SPV E650, HTC said.

The S710 looks like a phone, with a 2.4in colour TFT LCD screen and a numeric keypad. The handset, which also offers the option to view the display in landscape mode, has a concealed Qwerty keyboard that slides out from its side. The keyboard should make it easier for users to write emails or take advantage of the newly added ability in Windows Mobile 6 to edit Microsoft Office documents from a smartphone.

The S710 works with GSM, GPRS and EDGE networks, and also has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.0, and a 2Mp camera. It comes with 128Mb of ROM, 64Mb of RAM and has a slot for a microSD card.

Pricing was not immediately available