Verizon's LTE Smartphones Worthy iPhone 4 Competitors - InformationWeek

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1/12/2011
12:29 PM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
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Verizon's LTE Smartphones Worthy iPhone 4 Competitors

When Apple's iPhone 4 goes on sale through Verizon Wireless in February, it will have to contend with a batch of new Long Term Evolution 4G smartphones.

During the Consumer Electronics Show, Verizon Wireless debuted four new LTE smartphones, one each from HTC, LG, Motorola, and Samsung. All four of these Android-powered devices are solid alternatives to Apple's iPhone 4 -- especially considering that they support Verizon's faster 4G network and the iPhone 4 is stuck with 3G.

The HTC Thunderbolt boasts a 4.3-inch display, 1GHz processor, HTC Sense 2.0, an 8-megapixel camera, and the ability to serve as a hotspot for up to eight other Wi-Fi devices. It will also have DLNA on-board for media sharing.

The LG Revolution shares a similar 4.3-inch display with the Thunderbolt. It has dual cameras, mobile hotspot (for 8), Bluetooth 3.0, and an HDMI port. It also comes with 16GB of built-in storage, with support for microSD cards, allowing for up to an additional 32GB of storage.

The Motorola Droid Bionic includes many of the aforementioned features, including the same size display, 8-megapixel camera, HDMI out port, and 1GHz processor.

Last, the Samsung "4G LTE Smartphone" mirrors many of the same features.

With massive displays, LTE capabilities, better hotspot support, and higher-megapixel cameras, each of these devices has a fighting chance against Apple's iPhone 4. There are only a few considerations: timing and pricing.

The iPhone 4 hits store shelves February 10. The earliest any of these devices will be available is in March, with some of them not reaching the market until closer to the end of the first half of the year. Verizon has not made any of the pricing schemes clear for these devices. Will the iPhone 4's voice/data plans be the same as other Verizon smartphones? Will LTE services cost more? Will the LTE handsets cost more?

The iPhone 4's edge is that it is a known entity, and is being sold for a reasonable price sooner than these competitors can join it on Verizon's retail shelves.

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