San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
Overland Park, Kan. – Sprint expanded its selection of 4G LTE phones with the first LTE phone that it has ever launched at $49.
The ZTE-made Android-based Sprint Force is available through the carrier’s direct and indirect channels.
The launch expands not only Sprint’s selection of Android-based LTE phones but also its LTE-phone selection in general, a spokesman said. The carrier now offers 11 Android smartphones with 4G LTE as well as the 4G LTE iPhone 5.
Barcelona, Spain – Nokia expanded its selection of Windows Phone 8 smartphones with two models designed to be more affordable than current models.
Neither features 4G LTE, but both have slower 4G 21Mbps HSPA technology, Nokia’s website shows.
One of the models, the Nokia Lumia 520, will come to the T-Mobile network at an undisclosed future date as the Lumia 521. T-Mobile confirmed its version of the phone will not run LTE.
Barcelona, Spain – Sony Mobile Communications plans a second-quarter global launch of what it called the industry’s slimmest, lightest 10.1-inch tablet, the water-resistant Xperia Tablet Z.
Although Wi-Fi and 4G LTE versions of the tablet are planned, the company said the U.S. market would get the Wi-Fi version, which will be available in black and priced at $499 for the 16GB version and $599 for the 32GB version.
Kansas City, Mo. — Sprint prepaid brands Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile unveiled their first 4G LTE handsets, having launched their first 4G Mobile WiMAX handsets last May.
Sprint is phasing in LTE service throughout its footprint and has stopped marketing WiMAX handsets. The carrier announced last year that it would continue offering WiMAX service, purchased from Clearwire, to subscribers through at least 2015. At that time, dual-mode CDMA/WiMAX phones from Sprint, Virgin and Boost will switch to 3G CDMA service, a Sprint spokesperson said.
New York - MVNO Consumer Cellular, which targets the 50-plus age group with no-contract postpaid service, will move into high-end smartphones, launch 4G LTE service, and launch its first own-brand cellphone in 2013, co-founder and CEO John Marick told TWICE.
The Portland, Ore.-based MVNO will also boost is consumer-advertising spending by 30 percent this year to $65 million, in part by expanding its TV-ad schedule into prime time for the first time.
Barcelona, Spain — Huawei is at the Mobile World Congress to unveil what it called the “world’s fastest smartphone.”
The company is making this claim because of the phone’s use of LTE Category 4 technology, which delivers maximum theoretical download speeds of 150Mbps and uploads of 50Mbps.
Barcelona, Spain — Mozilla, creator of the Firefox web browser, has enlisted a quartet of cellphone makers to support the launch later this year of the first smartphones based on Mozilla’s HTML5-based Firefox OS.
The OS is designed to bring down the cost of smartphones by focusing on widely used HTML5 web technology to develop phone features and apps, accelerate the development of low-cost mobile apps, and challenge the curated Apple and Google app stores, Mozilla said.
Barcelona, Spain — Smartphones and tablets will be able to deliver up to 7.1 channels of surround sound through headphones starting later this year now that Qualcomm plans to incorporate DTS’s Headphone:X technology into its latest Snapdragon mobile processors.
The technology will appear first in Snapdragon 800-series mobile processors in the second half.
The development was announced here at the Mobile World Congress.
Barcelona, Spain — LG Electronics outlined a four-tier smartphone strategy that it said would double the company’s 4G LTE smartphone sales in 2013.
The four tiers of Optimus devices are the G, Vu:, F and LII series. The flagship G and Vu: series target the premium segment, and the F and L series are positioned as more mass-market smartphones for 4G LTE and 3G markets, respectively, the company said.
San Diego – Kyocera Communications and Sprint will launch their first 4G ruggedized smartphone on March 8 at $99 through all of the carrier’s retail distribution channels.
The LTE-equipped Android 4.1-based Torque is targeted not only to enterprise customers but, in a shift, also to consumers interested in a rugged phone. Targeted consumers include outdoor-sports enthusiasts, beachgoers and anyone with a hectic schedule, and they won’t need a $50-70 third-party case to protect the device, Kyocera said.