And just like that, all the leaks come to an end. Today Sprint made the HTC EVO Shift 4G official, giving it a launch date of January 9th and a $149.99 after two-year contract and $100 mail-in rebate price tag. Of course, the EVO Shift will also be subject to Sprint's $10 per month 4G fee. Specs for the device include a 3.6-inch 800x480 display, 800MHz Qualcomm MSM7630 processor (the very same one that's in the G2), 2GB of ROM, 512MB of RAM, 5 megapixel camera with 720p video capture, and Android 2.2 running beneath HTC's Sense UI.
The EVO Shift 4G wasn't the only 4G device announced by Sprint today, as the Novatel MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot is also now official. The MiFi can access Sprint's WiMAX network, has a microSD slot that supports cards up to 32GB in size, and can spit out a WiFi signal for four hours before its battery runs dry. Expect to see the MiFi launch on February 27th for $50 with a two-year contract and $50 mail-in rebate. The full press release can be found below.
While it's true that the EVO Shift 4G isn't the most high-end device we've ever seen, especially compared to the EVO when it originally launched, the Shift still looks like a handsome little device. What I like about the EVO Shift is its WiMAX capabilities and physical keyboard because, if you ask me, you can never have enough QWERTY-equipped Androids. Plus, after seeing how quickly HTC updated the EVO with Froyo, I'd be willing to bet that the EVO Shift will see an update to Gingerbread in a timely manner. So, how many of you are going to run out and pick up an EVO Shift this Sunday?
Sprint’s 4G Leadership Extends into 2011 with Introduction of Second Generation of Industry-Leading 4G-Capable Devices
HTC EVO Shift 4G with slide-out QWERTY available exclusively from Sprint on Jan. 9 for $149.99; MiFi® 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot by Novatel Wireless debuts on Feb. 27 for $49.99, bringing Sprint 4G connectivity to up to five Wi-Fi enabled devices
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (BUSINESS WIRE), January 04, 2011 - As the first national wireless carrier to launch 4G in 2008, Sprint (NYSE:S) wrapped up 2010 with a lead in 4G wireless device innovations. Further extending that lead, the company today introduced the upcoming availability of two products in Sprint’s second generation of 4G-capable devices: HTC EVO Shift™ 4G and MiFi® 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot by Novatel Wireless. With these two devices, Sprint has now introduced 17 4G-capable devices for consumers and business, including three phones, a 4G netbook and notebook from Dell, numerous USB modem options, and several mobile hotspots and routers.
“Sprint will continue to set the bar for feature-rich and customer-friendly 4G devices into 2011,” said Dan Hesse, Sprint CEO. “Our proven leadership as a 4G pioneer has allowed our customers to enjoy 4G from Sprint first, and these new products exemplify Sprint’s commitment to put industry-leading performance and capabilities in the hands of our customers.”
A Feature-Rich 4G Phone with QWERTY
As the 16th 4G-capable device from Sprint, HTC EVO Shift follows in the footsteps of the award-winning HTC EVO™ 4G, bringing customers an attractive, compact design and an impressive list of features with the addition of a sliding QWERTY keyboard. Beyond the highly acclaimed HTC Sense user experience, HTC EVO Shift also boasts the power of 4G, Android 2.2™, a 5MP camera, 720p HD camcorder and a 3.6-inch capacitive touchscreen display with pinch-to-zoom capability.
Additional key features include:
HD Video Recording
Sprint Mobile Hotspot (supporting up to eight Wi-Fi enabled devices)
Android Market™ with access to more than 100,000 apps
Messaging – Personal and business e-mail, IM and text messaging
Social Networking Integration – Facebook®, Twitter™, Flickr® and more
Google™ Mobile Services, including YouTube™, Gmail™, Google Talk™, Google Voice™ and Google Maps™
Stereo Bluetooth® wireless technology
microSD slot (supporting up to 32GB memory card)
The Web browser on HTC EVO Shift is optimized for convenient mobile use and a full Internet experience with functions like pinch-to-zoom and automatically reflowing text. Adobe Flash technology ensures that rich Internet content, such as embedded video and animation, are displayed the way they are meant to be seen. The slide-out QWERTY keyboard makes staying in touch with friends and family through messaging and social networking quick and easy.
Priced at the lowest cost at launch for any current 4G phone, HTC EVO Shift will be just $149.99 (excluding taxes) after a $100 mail-in rebate and activation on a new two-year service agreement (or eligible upgrade), and activation on a data plan with the required $10 Premium Data Add-On. It will be available in all Sprint retail channels, including www.sprint.com and 1-800-Sprint1, on Jan. 9. For more information, visit www.sprint.com/shift.
Big on Power, Small on Size
With the unveiling of Novatel Wireless’ (NASDAQ: NVTL) ultra-compact MiFi® 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot, Sprint brings customers the portability of the MiFi design with one-touch connectivity for up to five Wi-Fi enabled devices, including tablets, eReaders, laptops or gaming consoles. Delivering a true wireless experience with no cables or software installation required, MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot has battery life of up to four hours of usage and 60 hours of standby time. MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot easily supports all the needs of a family household, a frequent traveler who wants to avoid Wi-Fi charges, or even a small business team with a form factor about the size of a credit card.
MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot’s predecessor, 3G MiFi® wireless hotspot by Novatel Wireless, was one of the industry’s most popular intelligent mobile hotspots. MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot adds 4G accessibility, an external display with status indicators for battery, signal strength and number of connected devices, and shared storage capability through a MicroSD slot for up to a 32GB memory card. It supports Windows, Macintosh and Linuz operating systems.
As the 17th 4G-capable device from Sprint, MiFi 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot will be just $49.99 (excluding taxes) after a $50 mail-in rebate activation on a new two-year service agreement (or eligible upgrade). It will be available nationwide on Feb. 27 at all Sprint retail channels, including www.sprint.com and 1-800-Sprint1. Visit www.sprint.com/4Gmifi for more information.
More Options in 4G Products
Sprint already offers an extensive and impressive portfolio of 4G-enabled devices and routers. Stand-outs include Dell™ Inspiron™ Mini 10 (1012) netbook and Dell™ Inspiron™ 11z notebook, the first 3G/4G embedded devices offered by a wireless carrier in the United States. Both come pre-loaded with Windows Live Essentials 2011 and deliver 4G speeds on a mobile PC without the need for connection cards or hotspots to access the Internet.
Consumers have also been enjoying the award-winning HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic™ 4G, America’s first 4G-capable handsets. Both phones have received high praise from industry analysts, customers and media, including CNET, TheStreet.com, LAPTOP Magazine, POPULAR MECHANICS and PCWorld.
Business customers can take advantage of Sprint 4G technology with these devices and others, including CradlePoint MBR1200 Failsafe Gigabit N Router, which extends corporate security policies and failover technology, or CBA750 3G/4G Mobile Broadband Adapter to helps businesses stay connected during wireline outages.
The Sprint 4G portfolio of existing 4G-capable modems, mobile hotspots and routers all enhance productivity by enabling mobile downloads of large files, high-quality streaming video, online presentations and high-speed Web browsing. The advanced network also lets customers take advantage of robust applications and services, such as wireless voice-over-IP (VoIP), high-speed video telephony, music on-demand and video messaging. For a list of Sprint 4G devices, visit http://newsroom.sprint.com.
Unlimited 4G Plans With No Data Caps
Sprint customers get more with unlimited 4G data on their monthly plan, which means real simplicity and value. Sprint offers simplicity and savings vs. competitors, making it easy for customers to get the most out of their phones without worrying about costs or data usage. Sprint’s Everything Data plan with Any Mobile, AnytimeSM includes unlimited Web, texting and calling to and from any mobile in America while on the Sprint network, starting at just $69.99 per month plus required $10 Premium Data add-on for select smartphones – a savings of $39.99 per month vs. Verizon’s plan with unlimited talk, text and Web, and $35 per month vs. AT&T’s plan with unlimited talk, text and just 2GB of data.
Further, the Sprint Free Guarantee is the only full money-back guarantee on service plans in the wireless industry today, allowing customers to try a new line of service with Sprint for 30 days. If a customer isn’t completely satisfied, they can cancel service and return their device to be reimbursed for the device purchase and activation fee, get the early termination fee waived, get a full refund for monthly service plan recurring charges incurred and get all associated taxes and fees waived. In addition, Sprint will waive the restocking fee for new customer exchanges as part of this policy. Refund excludes usage not included in the service plan, premium content, third-party billing and international charges.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 48.8 million customers at the end of the third quarter of 2010 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, Common Cents Mobile and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. Newsweek ranked Sprint #6 in its 2010 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.