In time for the Memorial Day holiday weekend, Verizon is offering four new smartphones and nearly as many firsts. As of May 26, subscribers can purchase: the LG Revolution, the first Android smartphone to come preloaded with the Netflix app; the HTC Trophy, Verizon's first Windows Phone device and the first to let users play Xbox Live games; the Motorola Droid X2, Verizon's first with a dual-core processor; and the Xperia Play, which comes preloaded with seven games and is said to offer the "ultimate gaming experience."
Entertainment is the name of the game with LG's newest handset. The Revolution features 4G LTE connectivity, a 4.3-inch capacitive touch screen, a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, an Adobe Flash Player, HDMI output for sharing content with HDMI-capable displays (like an HDTV), a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera with 720p HD video recording and playback, Dolby Mobile sound and a slew of image-editing tools.
It runs the Android 2.2 OS and can act as a mobile hotspot for up to eight devices-a feature Verizon is offering at no additional cost for a limited time. The Revolution ships with a 16GB microSD card, and additional features include a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, for video calls, Bluetooth 3.0, VCast apps and Bing Search and Maps.
With a two-year contract, the LG Revolution is priced at $250. As with all four new phones, you'll need a Nationwide Talk plan, which starts at $40, and a data package. Unlimited data plans start at $30 a month.
If Windows Phone-or maybe just gaming-is more your style, the Trophy features a 3.8-inch touchscreen, a 1GHz processor, 3G and WiFi connectivity and lots of gaming goodness. Customers can sync the Trophy directly with their avatar, profile and game scores, and play alone or challenge friends to turn-based games. Plus, buy a Trophy before July 15 and Verizon will give you a free Xbox 360 console game-Reach, Kinect Sports or Lode Runner.
In the Music + Video Hub, users can access movies and music and stream songs-and should you need to check in on actual work, the Microsoft platform lets users view and edit Office documents and access data on SharePoint servers.
After a mail-in $50 rebate, and with a two-year contract, the Trophy is priced at $150.
In contrast to the touchscreen-centric, Windows-running Trophy, the Xperia Play is an Android 2.3-based phone with a game pad-complete with directional keypad, dual analog touch joystick, two shoulder buttons and four PlayStation symbol keys-that slides out from behind its 4-inch multi-touch display.
Madden NFL 11 (EA Sports), Bruce Lee Dragon Warrior (Digital Legends), Asphalt 6: Adrenaline (Gameloft), The Sims 3 (EA), Star Battalion (Gameloft), Crash Bandicoot (Sony Playstation) and Tetris come pre-loaded, and users can expand their game library via Verizon's V Cast Apps store, which at launch has more than 50 game titles.
The Play can act as a mobile hotspot for five devices, has a 1GHz processor, a 5-megapixel rear camera and a VGA camera on the front, and WiFi and 3G connectivity. With a two-year contract, it's yours for $200.
Finally, with the Droid X2 you get a speedy dual-core 1GHz processor, which should make for easy video watching, paired with the X2's Adobe Flash Player and 4.3-inch qHD display.
The Droid X2 runs Android 2.2-but has a 2.3 update on the way-an 8-megapixel camera with HD video capture, and a Mirror Mode that lets you share the movies, videos or photos on the phone's screen with an HDTV (via HDMI output). It can act as a mobile hotspot for five devices, and features what Verizon says are enterprise-grade security features.
With a two-year contract, the Droid X2 is priced at $200.
Verizon launched its 4G LTE (Long-Term Evolution) network in December 2010, and plans to have more than 175 U.S. cities covered by the end of this year.