Early rumours indicated that the Samsung Stratosphere would be released in September, and there were even leaked press shots of the device. However, here we are in October, and Verizon has just now taken the wraps off of the Stratosphere.
Billed as the "first 4G LTE smartphone with a QWERTY keyboard," the Samsung Stratosphere packs a hefty package, including:
Android 2.3 Gingerbread
1 GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor
4-inch (800x480) WVGA Super AMOLED display
5-row slide-out QWERTY keyboard
4GB on-board memory
4GB pre-installed microSD card (up to 32GB supported)
5MP rear camera, 1.3MP front camera (720p HD playback and 480p recording)
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
The Stratosphere is clearly targeted towards the business user as alongside the QWERTY keyboard, the device will also have "enhanced B2B-enabled connectivity services from Cisco, the most comprehensive mobile implementation of Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) and support for secure remote device management from Sybase Afaria." Additionally, the device will support "Samsung’s Enterprise Platform enhancements such as VPN, encryption and Mobile Device Management (MDM)." This is a powerful phone that looks to attack RIM's enterprise stronghold and take-away market share from the BlackBerry by offering support for features corporate users find essential.
Sprint announced today it will be switching 4G technologies from WiMax to LTE. The LTE network should go live in mid 2012 and and have a "full rollout" by 2013. Sprint eventually hopes to double current amount of 4G customers with its LTE rollout.
Joining the LTE ranks puts Sprint in the same technology corner as AT&T and Verizon, with only T-Mobile still clinging to HSPA+. Sprint's slice of the LTE airways will be the 800 and 1900Mhz spectrum and, pending the FCC's blessing, 1600MHz.
After just over a year of envious grumbling, the Canadians have finally gotten their first taste of LTE. Rogers Wireless announced today that true 4G speeds are available to customers in specific coverage areas in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Vancouver.
While this is surely a cause for excitement for my fellow Canucks, the devices that are currently on this new network aren't. At the time of launch, the only LTE device available to consumers is the Sierra Wireless AirCard 313U, a mobile "LTE Rocket stick" for laptops.
Since Sprint's agreement with LTE wholesaler LightSquared was signed in July, there have been rumblings about just when the carrier would launch an LTE network of its own. CNET reported Tuesday that the time is nearly at hand - Sprint is poised to launch their LTE network beginning in "early 2012."
According to CNET, Sprint hopes to launch this service by the beginning of Q2 2012, and the costs associated with the rollout have already been accounted for, meaning no additional capital investment will be necessary.
When we first reported on Motorola's alleged Xoom 2, very few - if any - details were certain. An anonymous tipster has been piling on the information since then, however, providing photos, (some) specs, and perhaps the most interesting detail of all - a second, smaller version of the Xoom 2, expected to be billed as an "e-reader replacement."
The Xoom 2's smaller relative appears to have the same rear buttons (power and volume rocker) as its larger counterpart, and a generally similar form factor, if not yet completely polished.
Amazon has reduced the price of the Motorola DROID BIONC for new Verizon subscribers to just $150 - and you'll get a free $50 Amazon Gift Card to boot, which would probably wisely be spent on a spare battery and charger.
Verizon's first dual-core phone to feature LTE and a qHD display (with somewhat yucky PenTile subpixel rendering), the BIONIC is definitely Verizon's current powerhouse handset.
For current Verizon customers, the price remains unchanged: $250 with a renewal of your 2-year agreement.
When I switched from AT&T from Verizon and swapped my aging, battered, and bruised Nexus One for a DROID BIONIC, the possibility of buyer’s remorse was not on my mind. I was coming from AT&T - America’s single least reliable network in terms of dropped calls. So, I thought the last thing I’d end up doing was wishing I was back there. And now, at least part of me does.
If you own a Verizon 4G LTE handset, you’ve probably experienced an issue exactly or approximately like this one: You put your phone in your pocket or let it sit overnight, take it out some time later or the next morning, and there’s no data connection.
A new month, a new batch of cities all lined up to get the LTE treatment, courtesy of Big Red. This go around, we're hearing that at least 21 new cities will be getting blanketed in VZW's ultra-fast LTE network, a follow up to the 26 that were just activated. The list of cities isn't available in its entirety just yet, but here's what we have so far:
Modesto and Stockton, CA
Fort Myers, FL
Bloomington, Elkhart, Evansville, South Bend and Terre Haute, IN
Sioux City, IA
Albuquerque and Santa Fe, NM
Jackson and Martin, TN
Greater Hampton Roads and Richmond, VA
Green Bay, WI
San Diego and Los Angeles, CA are said to be getting an expanded coverage area, as well.
It looks like AT&T is finally ready to take the wraps off its long-awaited LTE network in an attempt to compete with Verizon's powerhouse 4G LTE, which now covers over half of the country. Ma Bell's speed-demon network will start its plan for world conquest in Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio, TX; Atlanta, GA; and Chicago, IL on September 18th, with plans of introducing another 10 LTE markets before the end of 2011.
Verizon just keeps pumping out LTE connectivity in new areas across the country -- we saw no less than 15 cities get their piece of the LTE pie last month, and now 26 more are all set to get lit up tomorrow, September 15th. VZW already dropped the names of 15 of those cities last month, but here's the list in its entirety:
Fort Smith and Jonesboro, AR
San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, CA
Bloomington, Champaign/Urbana, Rockford and Springfield, IL
the Quad Cities, IL/IA; Iowa City, IA
Kalamazoo and Saginaw, MI
Las Cruces, NM
Canton, Lima and Mansfield, OH
the Tri-Cities, TN/VA
Austin, Beaumont/Port Arthur, Wichita Falls and El Paso, TX.
VZW customers in San Francisco, CA; Indianapolis, IN; and Cleveland/Akron, OH can also expect an expanded LTE coverage area.