Sprint and HTC made it official just now, announcing the forthcoming CDMA version of the Hero smartphone. The Android-based device will hit Sprint retail channels, including Best Buy, on October 11 for $179.99 after rebate with a two-year contract. This places Hero at a slightly lower price point than Sprint's flagship smartphones, the Palm Pre and BlackBerry Tour.
Hero is, in my estimation, the best Android device to date. HTC's Sense UI and the inclusion of a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, 5 megapixel camera, and mulitouch support give it the nod over T-Mobile's G1 and myTouch 3G with Google. Sprint's version of the device features a redesigned exterior along with CDMA and EVDO-Rev. A data support; this will be the first Hero to ship with US-compatible 3G bands - the current GSM model works with European 3G frequencies and EDGE in the US.
Specs include a 528-MHz Qualcomm processor, 3.2-inch, 320x480 capacitive multitouch screen, Wi-Fi, GPS, support for MS Exchange Push Email, and of course HTCs widget-heavy Sense UI running atop the standard Android OS. You can check out tons of video coverage of the unlocked GSM version of hero from both myself and John over on the Videos page.
But back to that redesigned look. What do you think: better, worse, or just different than the GSM version?