Mobile has really taken advantage of their floor time at the
CTIA wireless show in Las Vegas. Following the release of the Wave S8500
and the Galaxy S
, the company introduced the second 4G phone to
debut at the show. The SCH-r900 won't run on the WiMAX network that
Sprint and Clearwire use; instead, it will run on the LTE network that
is still at least 7 or 8 months away from being initialized.
The company is calling this phone one of the firsts, and that is indeed
the case. What's interesting is that the phone wasn't announced for
Verizon or any other major carrier; instead it will go to MetroPCS, a
smaller carrier that definitely doesn't make the news often for
securing phones before other operators. What's also interesting is that
this puts pricing pressure on those other "big guys" who will probably
want to charge more for LTE phones considering the massive investment
they've laid out for LTE. MetroPCS is famous for their flat rates, and
that flat rate service will also apply to this phone, despite the fact
that it will be able to download far more data and stress the network
in new ways.
MetroPCS plans to initially deploy a commercial LTE network in various
metropolitan markets, including the Las Vegas metropolitan area where
Samsung Mobile LTE network products will be used, in the second half of
2010. We can only assume that the phone will be launched on other
carriers as well, but obviously no one else is called dibs just yet.