Samsung unveils Galaxy S models for Sprint, Verizon, U.S. Cellular

Making a clean sweep of all the four major U.S. carriers and then some, Samsung introduces the rest of the Samsung Galaxy S series.

Samsung's Epic for Sprint is a 4G network-capable phone that has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a 4-inch Super AMOLED capacitive touch screen.
Samsung's Epic for Sprint is a 4G network-capable phone that has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a 4-inch Super AMOLED capacitive touch screen. Samsung

Over the past few days, Samsung has unveiled the identities of a couple of Galaxy S phones heading to the U.S., including the Samsung Captivate for AT&T and the Samsung Vibrant for T-Mobile .   But it seems as if Samsung has plenty of Android love to spread around as it announces three additional models for Sprint, Verizon, and U.S. Cellular. Though the Galaxy S handsets share many core features, they all have unique designs and carrier-specific services, so here's a quick rundown of each one.

Samsung Epic 4G for Sprint: As you might have guessed from the name, the Epic is a 4G network-capable phone--the second one for Sprint after the HTC Evo 4G--and it has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a 4-inch Super AMOLED capacitive touch screen. According to Samsung, its Super AMOLED display has a higher contrast, wider viewing angles, faster response time, and lets it create a thinner phone than a traditional LCD does. We've seen the Super AMOLED screen on the Samsung Wave, and we can say that most of the benefits are true.

Armed with such a display, 4G, and Samsung's 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor, multimedia will, once again, play a central role on the Epic, much like it did on the Evo 4G. However, Samsung will make it even easier to get  and watch TV shows and movies on the phone by including a video store. Samsung has not revealed where the content will come from,  but according to the company,  it includes "some of the biggest names in entertainment."

The phone's other goodies include a 5-megapixel camera with HD video capture, a front-facing VGA camera for video calls, and the capability to act as a mobile hot spot for up to five devices. Samsung will ship the Epic  running Android version 2.1 and its TouchWiz interface; however, if you're concerned about another Behold II situation , don't worry: the Epic will get the Android 2.2 Froyo update. According to Sprint, it plans to announce pricing and release date in the coming months, but you can sign up for updates via its Web site. If you're an Android developer, Samsung has a 4G Developer Guide available now for anyone who wants to create apps for the Epic.

Samsung Fascinate for Verizon: The Fascinate is Verizon's first Android phone from Samsung. As with most of the Galaxy S models, Samsung powers the smartphone with a 1GHz Hummingbird processor, and it will have a 5-megapixel camera with HD video capture and it will launch with Android version 2.1. Like the Epic, the Fascinate also has a 4-inch Super AMOLED display; however, the Fascinate will be a touch-only device with the option of a regular virtual keyboard or Swype. In addition, the smartphone has a six-axis sensor--as does the Epic--that works with the built-in accelerometer for a better gaming experience.

It's not clear whether Samsung will include a video store app on the Fascinate, but the phone supports a number of video codecs, including DivX. The Fascinate supports DLNA, so you can wirelessly share content with DLNA-compliant devices such as HDTVs and game consoles. As with the Epic, the Fascinate can be used as a mobile hot spot for up to five devices. The Epic has 2GB of internal memory and supports up to 32GB microSD cards--and it's packaged with a 16GB microSD card. Verizon apps for its usual services, such as V Cast Music and Video, VZ Navigator and Visual Voicemail, are all available on the Fascinate as well. However, neither Samsung nor Verizon have released information about the phone's pricing or availability date.

Samsung Galaxy S for U.S. Cellular: U.S. Cellular has a pretty busy summer ahead with its upcoming launch of the Samsung Acclaim and HTC Desire .  While we weren't really expecting this, we're glad to see the carrier getting serious about smartphones. U.S. Cellular was less specific about the features of its Galaxy S model (aside from the aforementioned core specs), but we expect to hear more about it closer to the scheduled fall launch of the device.

Samsung Vibrant for T-Mobile: Last but not least, we have the Samsung Vibrant. Though T-Mobile unveiled its identity late last week, it provided few details about the smartphone; however, we now know it will be an all touch-screen smartphone (with the same 4-inch Super AMOLED display as the others) and come preloaded with a full-screen copy of "Avatar," Amazon Kindle for Android, MobiTV, Slacker Radio, a month of free in-flight Wi-Fi access through Gogo Inflight Internet, and Samsung's Media Hub.

The Samsung Vibrant will be available from T-Mobile starting July 21 for $199.99 in either dark blue or lavender, and RadioShack is taking in-store preorders for the smartphone starting July 1--a $50 deposit is required.

Phew! Got all that? Now remember, Samsung will be hosting a Galaxy S event on Tuesday, June 29 in New York where we expect to see most of these devices and perhaps learn more about their availability, so check back then for more details and hands-on impressions, photos, and videos.

 

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