T-Mobile to Stop Selling Current Sidekicks

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T-Mobile USA will stop selling its current Sidekick mobile phones effective Friday, though it will keep the Sidekick brand alive.

The carrier sells two models, the Sidekick LX and the Sidekick 2008, both of which will be pulled from all of T-Mobile's sales channels starting Friday. However, there will be a future generation of the product line, according to a company statement. T-Mobile said it will "further innovate and raise the bar for the next generation of the T-Mobile Sidekick."

Customers who already have Sidekicks will continue to get service and support, the company said.

The Sidekick was introduced by startup Danger in 2002 and broke new ground as a phone that allowed Web surfing and AOL Instant Messenger, as well as voice calls, SMS (Short Message Service) and games. T-Mobile has always sold the devices with an eye to the youth market.

T-Mobile's move comes just days after Microsoft discontinued the Kin, another consumer-oriented phone with its roots in Danger's software. Danger, which was acquired by Microsoft in 2008, still operates the online backup service for Sidekicks. That service suffered a black eye last year when a server problem caused some subscribers to lose personal data.

The Sidekick devices are manufactured by Sharp. In its statement, T-Mobile hints at big changes to the line, which has not had a significant update recently.

"Stay tuned for exciting updates in the months ahead, which we expect will provide customers with a new and fresh experience," T-Mobile said in the statement. T-Mobile spokesman David Henderson declined to comment on the manufacturer or operating system for the future Sidekicks.

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