We knew it was coming, we just didn't know when - until now that is, as Three has announced that the HTC Explorer has gone on sale in its stores and via its online shop.

The HTC Explorer is somewhat of a smartphone for beginners, offering Android Gingerbread at a wallet-friendly price.

As well as the Android 2.3.5 software, you'll also find the latest version of HTC Sense, v3.5, one that offers a lighter take on Sense, similar to what you get on the HTC Rhyme. The screen is 3.2-inch with 480 x 320 pixels. There's a 3-megapixel camera on the back.

The budget price is made possible by compromising on the engine room - it's just a 600MHz processor on board, with 512MB of RAM. However, Pocket-lint got its hands on the handset back in September, albeit very briefly, and it appeared solid enough with respectable build quality, and also seemed responsive to our quick exploratory pokes.

The HTC Explorer is available from £15 a month on contract. PAYG customers can get the phone for £129.99.