Rumors flew in regarding the Galaxy S4 mini, and we had a pretty good idea that it would be headed to the United States on four carriers. All we needed was confirmation.
And guess what? Now we have that.
In a press release, Samsung announced that the phone is US-bound, and will be available from Sprint, Verizon, AT&T, and US Cellular.
The device is similar to its bigger brother, but has a smaller frame and lesser internals. It features a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED display at 960×540 resolution, a dual-core Snapdragon 400 processor clocked at 1.7GHz, 1.5GB RAM, 16GB internal storage which is expandable via microSD, an 8 MP rear shooter, and a 1,900mAh battery.
The phone ships with 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and the most recent version of Samsung’s TouchWiz UI— this means that you’ll get most of the same software add-ins that the full S4 has. Samsung also made it known that the device will receive a software update which will allow it to support Galaxy Gear.
US Cellular is one of the only major US carriers that hasn’t offered shared data packages for consumers. They’ve finally caught up today, though, and their new share plans are officially available to consumers. However, like how the other carriers are handling these plans, you aren’t required to move onto these plans if you’re already on older plans.
The pricing is similar to other options you’ll find; 300 MB with unlimited talk and text will run $40 per month, plus a $40 per device access fee. The 1 GB share plan puts you at $90 each month, which seems to be the sweet spot with postpaid individual plans. You can add up to 10 devices onto one of these plans, and lesser devices like feature phones or tablets have cheaper access fees. All in all, nothing revolutionary here, but if you’re a US Cellular customer, it’s nice to have more options. You can check out their full press release below.
While this update has already hit other Moto X’s from other carriers, US Cellular’s is due up next and offers the same big update that’s supposed to improve the camera among other things:
- Camera – Improves photo quality, focus and faster switching between rear and front facing camera.
- Enhanced touch-less control
- Improves Motorola Migrate experience
- Google Drive (50GB promotion)
- Lost device finder
- Driving detection
The update should be live, but if you haven’t gotten the notification yet, you can either wait or try to manually pull it by going to Settings/About Phone/Updates.
source: Android Central
Motorola has posted bootloader unlocker tools on their web site for several versions of their new Moto X device. Consumers on the Sprint and US Cellular networks in the U.S. can use the new tools to unlock their devices, which just went on sale for them this past week. Motorola has also made versions of the bootloader unlocker tool available for Moto X owners in Canada, including those on Rogers, and for Latin American markets.
The bootloader unlocker gives owners of the Moto X the option to root their devices, install third-party ROMs, or just generally tinker around with their devices. This additional flexibility does come at a cost though as installation of the unlocker with void the device’s warranty. If you want to give the unlocker a try despite the risk to your warranty, hit the source link below.
Sources indicate it is unlikely Motorola will provide an unlocker for Verizon, AT&T or T-Mobile versions of the Moto X. However, developer editions of the device are expected for those networks that will give buyers a similar option.
Everyone’s excited for Samsung’s new devices that were announced earlier this week, and we can now stay excited until early October. While other countries might be receiving their Note 3, Note 10.1, and Gear by September 25, US customers will have to wait another week for theirs. US carriers are announcing their dates separately, and it seems like AT&T will begin shipping their devices October 1, T-Mobile by October 2, Verizon by October 10, and US Cellular with a vague “October” launch date.
It’s interesting that carriers are selling the Gear smartwatch considering it has no cellular device inside of it. Still, you can pre-order from all carriers except for US Cellular. Check out the source links.
Source: PhoneArena, AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon
Even though US Cellular began accepting pre-orders for the Moto X over a month ago, we didn’t know exactly when they would ship. Well, they’ve begun shipping, and the phone is available as of today online and will arrive in retail stores by Friday. If you’ve pre-ordered already, you’ll have it soon.
If you’re interested in the Moto X for US Cellular, it’ll cost you either $124.99 or $199.99 for the 16GB version with a two-year contract. It’s $124.99 for new customers and those adding another line of service, and $199.99 for existing customers. It’s of course available in only Woven White or Woven Black, at this point. Head to the source links to purchase.
Source: US Cellular – Moto X
Yesterday we saw a leaked image of the 6.3-inch Samsung Galaxy Mega sporting AT&T branding, so it should not be a major surprise that Samsung has finally issued their official confirmation that the device is coming to the U.S. market. The Galaxy Mega has already been released to a few markets around the globe since it was officially unveiled, but official word on the U.S. market was lacking until now. According to Samsung’s press release, the Galaxy Mega will be available beginning this month on AT&T, Sprint and US Cellular. The device is only available in Nova Black and Polaris White, but it will be up to each carrier to decided which of those two colors, or both, it will offer.
Sprint has followed up on Samsung’s statement with their own indicating buyers can take advantage of a Sprint Unlimited Guarantee to lock-in unlimited talk, text and data for the life of the line of service. Meanwhile, AT&T indicates the device will be available starting August 23rd for $24 per month with AT&T Next of $149.99 with a standard two-year agreement.
You can read Samsung’s full announcement after the break.
Sources indicate US Cellular is working on rolling out shared data plans for their user base, following the lead of Verizon and AT&T. Apparently employees are in the process of receiving training on the benefits of shared data plans for all parties involved – US Cellular, sales associates and customers. Some of the key “selling” points include the simplicity of the bill for customers and the ability to use data however you want on a variety of devices.
No word yet on what pricing might be like for the new US Cellular plans, but the belief is the pattern will be similar to the industry in throttling back on the data available for use while raising the price. It is not clear whether existing customers will be grandfathered into their unlimited data plans, but that seems likely while new customers will be forced to choose a shared data plan.
source: Droid Life
U.S. Cellular, the fifth of the carriers that will offer the Moto X, is the first that has begun accepting pre-orders for the woven white and woven black Moto X. Only the 16GB device, which retails for $199.99 is currently available for pre-order. U.S. Cellular is offering two promotions though, one being a free free Motorola Boom Wireless Headset with purchase (a $59.99 value), and the second being a $75 Switcher Bonus discount.
If you factor in both of these promotions, it essentially brings the cost of the device down to $69.99. The full price of the device is valued at a lofty $699.99, quite a bit steeper than the $575 or $625 that is supposed to be the case on the other four carriers.
You can pre-order your U.S. Cellular Moto X through the source links below.
Source: Woven White Moto X (U.S. Cellular) | Woven Black Moto X (U.S. Cellular)
On his Google+ page, Taylor Wimberly posted some unverified information indicating Moto X smartphones will be shipping out to U.S. carriers on Monday, July 29th. Motorola has a press event scheduled for Thursday in New York to officially unveil the device. Putting two and two together, some people are wondering whether the device may be available for purchase later this week.
We have already seen information leak indicating US Cellular will start selling the device on August 26th while Verizon is scheduled to release the Moto X on August 23rd. Considering that same roadmap for Verizon indicated the HTC One will go on sale on the network on August 1st, it seems unlikely they would have a second buzz-generating device launch at the same time. There is some conjecture that AT&T may have struck an exclusivity deal and will be ready to start offering the Moto X shortly after the announcement ala Google’s release of the Chromecast.
Be sure to check back for further developments as we close in on the official announcement of the Moto X.
source: +Taylor Wimberly