Chicago - Regional carrier U.S. Cellular launched its first 4G product, the LTE-equipped Galaxy Tab 10.1, and priced it for a limited time at $399 after $100 mail-in rebate with two-year data plan.
No prepaid option is available for the 32GB 4G tablet, which is available through the carrier's stores and website and through indirect retailers.
The carrier did not say when the 4G version's price would rise to its regular price of $499 after $100 mail-in rebate.
Without activation, the tablet's price goes up to $799, enabling it to be used only over Wi-Fi networks.
When activated, the tablet operates on U.S. Cellular's 700MHz LTE network and on its 3G CDMA 1x EV-DO Rev. A network, and two data plans are available for use over both networks. One plan costs $14.99/month for 200MB of data plus 25 cents per MB over that amount. The other plan costs $54.99/month for 5GB of data per month plus 25 cents per MB over that amount.
U.S. Cellular is rolling out 4G service in conjunction with King Street Wireless, in which the carrier is a limited partner. King Street Wireless owns 152 700MHz wireless licenses covering portions of 27 states.
The partners currently offer 4G LTE service in select cities in Iowa, Maine, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin, reaching about 25 percent of the population in its markets. In the second half of this year, they'll expand 4G LTE coverage to select cities in Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oregon, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia. By the end of 2012, the carrier's 4G footprint will reach 54 percent of consumers in its footprint.
The carrier previously said the tablet would be followed soon by the Samsung Galaxy S Aviator LTE smartphone, which enables users to talk and access the web simultaneously. After that, the carrier said it would launch the Samsung 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot in the spring, followed later in the year by a 4G LTE modem and additional 4G LTE smartphones.