AT&T Opens Samsung Galaxy S10 5G Sales But Kills All Galaxy Fold Preorders
For AT&T, it is not quite 'out with the old and in with the new', as it is 'out with broken and in with the new'. The 'new' in this case would be Samsung's Galaxy S10 5G model, which as the name implies, has a 5G radio inside. As for the 'not old but broken', that would be the Galaxy Fold—customers are receiving notices that AT&T has canceled their Galaxy Fold preorders. More on that in a moment.
The Galaxy S10 5G is the flagship model in the Galaxy S10 series, which comprises the regular Galaxy S10, the bigger Galaxy S10+, and the cheaper Galaxy S10e (we have a review in progress of this model, by the way). It is the only one of the four to rock a 5G modem, making it an enticing option if you happen to live in an area that is already being served by 5G connectivity.
AT&T, of course, drummed up some negative publicity among tech savvy users when it began advertising "5G Evolved" (5G E) connectivity. The misleading nomenclature suggests that it is an actual 5G network, but it is really just Advanced 4G LTE.
The wireless carrier does actually operate a 5G network in "very limited parts of 19 cities," with plans of expanding to at least 30 cities. Hence why the company is making some noise about offering the Galaxy S10 5G to its Business customers and 5G developers through the AT&T Developer Program.
"Businesses are leading the charge on the nation’s first mobile 5G network, and this is the next step in unlocking 5G’s full potential for those early adopters and innovators," said Mo Katibeh, Chief Marketing Officer, AT&T Business. "With mobile 5G a core tenet of our 5G strategy for businesses, we’re making this amazing new device available so that the business community can begin creating new experiences and drive the next industrial revolution through unprecedented mobile capabilities."
AT&T is running a promo whereby the the Galaxy S10 5G with 256GB of internal storage can be purchased for $999.99, a discounted rate that matches the price of the Galaxy S10+ with 128GB of storage. Pricing for service starts at $90 per month. The phone will be available to order on June 17.
As for the Galaxy Fold, its future is still in question. Tom's Guide reports that AT&T is emailing customers who preordered the Galaxy Fold to let them know their orders have been cancelled. The site received an email itself, and also confirmed that it has gone out to other customers who preordered the Galaxy Fold. AT&T states in its email that users can expect a "prompt refund," plus a $100 AT&T gift card for their "patience."
Had things gone to plan, the Galaxy Fold would have shipped to customers in April. However, reviewers who got their hands on one before the phone's release reported issues with the folding display. Some of the issues were due to the removal of a protective screen cover that is supposed to remain on the phone, however a teardown of the device showed that gaps in the construction could allow dirt and debris to sneak inside, potentially causing trouble.