Print 6 comment(s) - last by StealthX32.. on Oct 11 at 2:26 PM

AT&T's Android family has added some new members.  (Source: AT&T)
Refreshed Atrix 4G, the Captivate Glide, and even a prepaid option beef up Ma Bell's offerings

AT&T, Inc. (T) hasn't exactly always been the heaviest proponent of Android, instead pushing hard offerings like the Apple, Inc. (AAPL) iPhone -- long an AT&T exclusive -- and Research in Motion, Ltd. (TSE:RIM) business-minded Blackberry smartphone lineup.  But with RIM's sales slumping, the era of iPhone exclusivity long since at the end, and Android the de-facto winner of the smartphone wars, in terms of market share, the need for a shuffling of AT&T's lineup and refocusing is apparent.

To that end AT&T announced today, "In January, AT&T announced plans to introduce 12 Android devices in 2011 and today AT&T confirmed that goal has been met and will be exceeded during the fourth quarter."

To get there today it dropped five new smart phones:

Motorola Atrix 4G (refresh; produced by Google Inc. (GOOG))
Motorola Atrix 4G
  • UMTS 850/1900/2100
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
  • 4G HSPA+ 21 Mbps (Category 14)
  • 1 GHz dual-core processor
  • Internal memory: 8 GB ROM, 1 GB RAM, 2 GB microSD™ card (expandable to 32GB)
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • 4.3-inch qHD screen 960x540TFT, with more than  500,000 pixels for sharper, clearer display
  • 8 MP camera and LED flash 
  •  Front-facing camera
  • 1080p HD video capture, 30 frames per second playback
  • On Device Encryption (ODE) and Enhanced Exchange ActiveSync® (EAS)
  • IPsec VPN
  • Lapdock 100 Accessory

Samsung Captivate™ Glide (Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (SEO 005930))
Samsung Captivate Glide

  • UMTS 850/1900/2100
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
  • 4G HSPA+ 21 Mbps (Category 14)
  • 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 AP20H dual core processor
  • 1GB RAM/1GB ROM/8GB Internal microSD™ to 32GB (not included)
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • 4-inch 480x800 WVGA Super AMOLED™
  • Dual camera - 8MP Autofocus w/LED + 1.3MP front
  • Full HD 1080p video camera + HDMI playback
  • Enhanced Exchange ActiveSync® (EAS) to sync email, contacts, calendar and tasks
  • Device and SD card encryption
  • Virtual private network support
  • Mobile Device Management (MDM)

Samsung DoubleTime™
Samsung DoubleTime

  • UMTS 850/1900/2100
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
  • Processor Qualcomm 600 MHz
  • Onboard Memory Supports 260MB
  • Android 2.2 (Froyo)
  • microSD™ memory card supports up to 32GB (2GB microSD card included)
  • 3.2” full touch screen display with 320 x 480 and 480 x 320 (HVGA) resolution

Pantech Pocket™
PanTech Pocket

  • UMTS 850/1900/2100
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
  • Internal Memory:  ~600MB plus 2GB microSD™ included.
  • User Memory: 2.5 GB included (Includes a 2 GB microSD Card)
  • Support for up to 32GB microSD
  • Android  2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • Full touch 4" SVGA display
  • Screen size & resolution: 4" (600x800) 16M TFT
  • 5 MP camera with flash and HD video recording
  • 114.7mm x 78mm x 11.3mm
  • Weight is 4.66 oz
  • Bluetooth: v. 2.1 + EDR
  • Wi-Fi and access to AT&T hotspots

AT&T Avail™(prepaid)
AT&T Avail

  • UMTS 850/1900/2100
  • GSM 850/900/1800/1900
  • Internal memory: 512 MB ROM, 512 MB RAM, 2 GB microSD™ card
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • 3.5-inch capacitive touch screen
  • 5 MP autofocus camera and video recorder
  • Seven customizable homescreens
  • Wi-Fi capable
Clearly the Atrix 4G and Captivate Glide fill the role of high-end Android smartphones; the Pocket and DoubleTime fill the low-end smartphone niche; and the Avail fills the much-need utility of a pre-paid Android offering.  The Atrix 4G, in particular should be interesting to keep an eye on.  The new model looks reasonably impressive hardware-wise, but the last generation was a sales dud.  Clearly Google hopes that changes with the refresh.

AT&T's Android lineup is starting to look pretty impressive, led by Samsung's gorgeous best-selling Galaxy S II.  AT&T has launched 12 Android phones and 2 Android tablets thus far this year.  While still a bit behind Verizon Communications, Inc. (VZ) in pure volume of Android handset options, the company has a strong enough lineup to do well.

Now its biggest problem will be selling customers on that lineup and stepping up its Android-dedicated advertising efforts in the U.S.  After all its rivals -- Sprint Nextel Corp. (S), Deutsche Telekom AG's (ETR:DTE) T-Mobile USA, and Verizon have done a much better job in advertising their Android offerings.  In Verizon's case, that's allowed it to convince many customers to pay its high plan rates -- the highest among the four major carriers.  From a business perspective, AT&T would be wise to follow Verizon's example.

If you want to see more images of a particular model in action, check out AT&T's little commercial/teaser about these new Android offerings:

Source: AT&T

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How sad is it...
By quiksilvr on 10/11/2011 10:43:50 AM , Rating: 2
That most all of these "4G" phones have proper 21 Mbp/s HSPA+ but the iPhone 4S is stuck with 14? Hell, even T-Mobiles new superphones have 42 Mbp/s onboard.

RE: How sad is it...
By Flunk on 10/11/2011 10:55:42 AM , Rating: 2
It's all about profitability vs the number of people who would care about that. The vast majority of consumers have no idea how fast their phone's data connection is. Heck, I basically only use mine to read email, download maps, surf the web and download small apps.

RE: How sad is it...
By amanojaku on 10/11/2011 11:10:57 AM , Rating: 1
Not as sad as the knowledge that no provider can currently guarantee those speeds, or even burst them. The iPhone being stuck at 14mbps is a moot point for now.

RE: How sad is it...
By nafhan on 10/11/2011 12:38:51 PM , Rating: 2
Part of it's about battery life. More importantly is the economic factor: they know they can sell a ton of phones without the added cost of including a faster modem, so why include it?

Apple generally updates their technology either:
A) When they can use it to differentiate their products
B) When they absolutely have to in order to avoid looking hopelessly out of date

At this point a faster wireless chipset (arguably) doesn't fall into either category.

RE: How sad is it...
By StealthX32 on 10/11/2011 2:26:51 PM , Rating: 2
Is max theoretical even relevant?

I have yet to break 4 Mbps on T-Mobile, even though my phone is capable of 14.

Honestly, I doubt your carrier provide the bandwidth to outstrip your phone's performance. Especially if you have an AT&T.

How about quicker updates
By Chaosforce on 10/11/2011 10:51:24 AM , Rating: 2
ok so they announced several new phones but hows about working more on getting damn updates out quicker.

"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer

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