Although I've dropped a phone a total of about three times in my life, and although manufacturers are continually touting more and more durable glass, polycarbonate plastic, and even metal that's 3x stronger than stainless steel, there lingers in the back of my mind the question of what may happen if and when that fateful day comes – the day when I finally drop my phone onto an unforgiving concrete, asphalt, or otherwise hard surface.
If you're still looking to get your hands on a Sprint-branded Galaxy Nexus, Amazon has a deal for you – Amazon Wireless is offering the Galaxy Nexus right now for $49.99 if you open a new account. This is a great discount, cutting a full $100 off the last deal we saw.
It's worth noting that customers looking to activate a new line or upgrade an existing line can expect to pay $99.99 or $149.99 respectively for the Now Network's debut LTE device.
Alongside Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, Sprint has announced that it, too, will be carrying the next Galaxy in just a few short weeks. As far as we can tell, the device will be unbranded aside from the standard Sprint logos, but we've yet to confirm this (Sprint has not provided images).
Yesterday, we'd heard from Samsung that the device would be coming to five carriers in the US, and with Sprint's announcement, we're now up to all five.
It's been a long time coming, particularly for the pioneer Android tablet, but the Ice Cream Sandwich update for Verizon's 4G Xoom is rolling out today as expected. The update brings the Xoom to the very latest version of Android available - 4.0.4.
An over-the-air rollout has started today, but if you are too impatient to wait for that, you have the option of installing the update manually (this method requires the use of a USB host cable):
- Download the update here.
Alongside Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, and T-Mobile, regional carrier US Cellular has made official that it will be carrying Samsung's Galaxy S III, with pre-orders beginning on June 12th. Pricing has yet to be announced, but as a regional carrier, US Cellular often has slightly higher premiums than its national counterparts, so potentially expect something above the standard $199 price-tag for the 16GB model.
As with all the announced US Galaxy S III devices, it is packing a Snapdragon S4, rather than a quad-core Exynos processor, which means full LTE support.
Hot on the heels of blurry-cam shots of the upcoming LS970, a rumored upcoming Sprint LG device, today we've heard that the carrier has yet another phone from the other Korean electronics giant waiting in the wings - though this one's a little less exciting.
If you recall, the LG Viper is essentially Sprint's take on the LG Lucid, found at Verizon - a mid-range device with highly capable, if slightly dated, specifications.
Sprint has long been the refuge for data-hungry users that don't want to deal with caps or overages. While Sprint's regular 3G and 4G data usage on phones is still unlimited, back in October the Now Network started capping the mobile hotspot feature at 5GB per month. Starting last Friday, May 18th, that plan is gone. In its place are two pricier options.
The low-end option comes with 2GB of monthly bandwidth and costs $19.99 per month.
Update: In response to the rather vocal outcries of many of its subscribers on the web, Verizon has clarified what will happen to 3G/4G data plans explicitly. The takeaway is this: anyone purchasing a smartphone from this summer forward on subsidy pricing will be pushed into tiered/shared data. If you choose not to buy a smartphone on subsidy, you can keep your unlimited plan if you choose to.
This means if you renew your 2-year agreement, from this summer forward, on any line by buying a "discounted" phone, you lose unlimited.
As much as I complain about how ridiculous the monthly price of a good wireless plan is, I have to admit it does have its upsides. For AT&T and Verizon especially, that means that when they take in those huge profits, they pay part of it back out in the form of network upgrades and advancements. That's a big chunk of why their 4G (LTE) rollouts are ahead of the other two carriers, and part of why they're ahead of their European counterparts (the other big part, at least compared to Europe, is spectrum).