Localytics: One-third of the U.S. Android ecosystem is 4G-enabled

A Localytics study issued today helps understand why Verizon Wireless recently sided with Samsung in the ongoing Apple vs. Samsung legal saga. Per Localytics’ data, 4G is one of Android’s key differentiators: More than one in three Android phones in the United States take advantage of fourth-generation cellular networks. In the third quarter of this year, some 36.6 percent of Android handsets in the United States were 4G-ready, a notable increase over the 22.6 percent in the first quarter of 2011.

This number is increasing rapidly – since the beginning of the year, the percentage of Android devices that are 4G-capable has grown by over 50 percent, culminating at a full third of the Android ecosystem. It will be interesting to see whether the iPhone 5 supports any type of 4G network. The drawbacks – bulkier antenna and a much shorter battery life – may outweigh the benefits in speed. Regardless, with the growth in 4G-capable handsets Android has seen, it appears that smartphone users are buying into the value of speed. We’ll see how this continues. 

The nation’s most popular 4G handsets in the third quarter were the HTC Thunderbolt (Verizon), the HTC Evo 4G (Sprint), the Samsung Epic 4G (Sprint), the Samsung Droid Charge (Verizon), the myTouch 4G (T-Mobile USA) and the Motorola Atrix (AT&T). A few caveats and the full list of most popular 4G devices in the country right below the fold…

Read more

HTC Vigor leak hints towards 1.5 GHz dual-core processor, 720p HD display, and 4G LTE

Droid-Life has published exclusive shots of the HTC Vigor which shows some pretty impressive specs for the upcoming device. According to a shot after the break, the Vigor is shown having a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor, 4.3-inch 720p HD display, 8-megapixel rear-facing, 2-megapixel front-facing camera, and Verizon Wireless’s 4G LTE.

On the hardware side, the Vigor will feature Android 2.3.4 and Sense 3.5 (ugh). There’s no word on release date, but looks like a nice Thunderbolt successor, eh?

Read more

Verizon announces Pantech Breakout 4G LTE available for $99 right now

Verizon has just announced the Pantech Breakout 4G LTE, which is available available right now. The Breakout is available for $99 on two-year contract, making for the first low-cost 4G LTE to hit the market. The specs are nothing spectacular, but pretty good for $99 combined with LTE. The phone features a 1 GHz processor, 512 MB of RAM, microSD support with an 8 GB card included, a 4-inch 480×800 display, Gingerbread, 5-megapixel rear-shooter, and VGA front-facing shooter.

Of course the elephant in the room is that you can get just about any high end Android LTE phone at Amazon for almost free with a two year plan.

A couple more shots after the break:

Read more

Droid Bionic earns official spot on Motorola Store

The Droid Bionic you have all been waiting for has just made its official debut on the Motorola Store. The Store posting doesn’t say much. In fact, there aren’t any specs or details, but we’re assuming those are coming shortly. And of course, you can’t purchase the device quite yet.

Luckily, a few more press shots were provided with the official posting. Upon our first look we’ve noticed the device is still looking pretty thick. We can’t make any official judgements quite yet, but look out for early September. (via Android Central)

Check out a few more press shots after the break:

Read more

HTC Holiday and Vigor leaks, both packing 4G LTE and impressive specs

The front and back of the HTC Holiday shown on the left, and the back of the HTC Vigor shown on the right

Engadget has leaked exclusive images of the HTC Holiday, a device reportedly heading to AT&T this fall with 4G bands. The device looks to pack a beautiful 4.5-inch qHD display, 1.2 GHz processor, 8-megapixel shooter, 1.3-megapixel front facing camera, and yes, 4G LTE.

DroidLife has also leaked the first pictures of the HTC Vigor, a device that packs a 1.5 GHz processor heading to Verizon this fall with 4G bands. Overall specs for the device are impressive: a front facing camera, shooter on the back, 4.3-inch HD screen, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of internal space.

These devices paired with the Galaxy S II and Droid Bionic, and what ever else carriers have down their sleeve, will make Android to have a sure shot against the iPhone 5 — which is slated for a mid-October launch. Read more

Sprint in a 4G LTE deal with LightSquared

Carrier Sprint today announced a fifteen-year deal with LightSquared enabling them to offer 4G LTE services on their network. As you know, Sprint currently offers wireless broadband marketed as 4G through its majority stake in Clearwire, utilizing their WiMax technology. Sprint couldn’t have signed a better deal to joing the 4G LTE craze. LightSquared will actually pay the carrier $9 billion in cash over the course of eleven years to deploy an LTE network, spending itself $13 billion over the next eight years on boosting their network capacity. In return, the company will be allowed to sell their 4G service to Sprint customers. Sprint can tap up to 50 percent of LightSquared’s 4G capacity and a roaming agreement will be in place by 2012.

On the downside, LightSquared plans on launching its first 4G market in 2012 and finish commercial deployment by 2015. Compared this to AT&T and Verizon Wireless which already operate 4G LTE service in select markets and plan to commercially deploy their networks by the end of next year. However, Sprint is the nation’s third-largest carrier with 51 million customers as of June so the ability to host on their network an increasing number of 4G LTE smartphones will positively impact their bottom line and competitiveness. Plus. Sprint is rumored to have been testing a Sprint iPhone for some time, with Apple seeking a carrier engineer in the Kansas City area, where Sprint is headquartered.

Read more