HTC Hero - plus QWERTY "Memphis" version - tipped for June 24th

When the invitation for HTC's mysterious June 24th press event came in earlier this week, we speculated that it could see the launch of the HTC Hero.  After all, the third Android handset is already showing up in leaked promo videos, suggesting it's teetering on the edge of availability.  Now, Chinese paper Economic Daily News is reporting that yes, not only will the Hero drop on the 24th, but a second version of the smartphone with a QWERTY keyboard.

According to their sources, unspecified of course, the model that includes the keyboard will be the HTC Memphis.  However in the US, the handset will be a six-month AT&T exclusive starting from its Q3 2009 launch, and known as the HTC Lancaster.

The report continues that the Hero/Memphis will both use HTC's own TouchFLO 3D UI on top of Android.  While it seems vaguely unbelievable that the company would carry over their Windows Mobile interface to Android, it does fit in with recent leaks showing a TouchFLO 3D-inspired adaptation of Android believed to be of HTC's making.

SlashGear will be attending the June 24th event, so you know we'll be bringing you all the details no matter what HTC announce.

[vms 49da13542e0726b7bb75]