Samsung Galaxy Stellar, LG Intuition Phablet Headed for Verizon

Verizon, kicking off what's likely to be a busy week, announced it will begin selling the 5-inch LG Intuition and enterprise-friendly Samsung Galaxy Stellar Sept. 6.

Verizon Wireless will add two new Android smartphones to its 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) network during the week of Sept. 3, the LG Electronics Intuition-a 5-inch tablet that is LG's answer to the Samsung Galaxy Note franchise-and the enterprise-friendly Samsung Galaxy Stellar.

Verizon will begin selling the LG Intuition online Sept. 6 and in stores Sept. 10. Anyone who buys the device between those dates will receive an LG Tone Stereo Bluetooth headset at no additional cost. With a new two-year agreement-a Verizon data plan isn't an option, though the phone can be added to a Verizon Share Everything plan for $40 a month-the Intuition is priced at $199.99.

Like Samsung's Note devices, the Intuition comes with a stylus of sorts that LG calls a Rubberdium pen, though users can also employ a fingertip to add a handwritten note to photos, Websites, maps or other types of content. There's a QuickMemo app on board, for such handwritten notes, as well as a Polaris Office app in which various types of documents can be viewed, edited and shared.

In addition to a 5-inch display with a 4:3 aspect radio and a 650 NIT display, making it easy to view even in bright sunlight, the phone runs Android version 4.0, known as Ice Cream Sandwich, has a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor and 1GB of RAM.

There's an 8-megapixel camera on the back, with LED flash and 1080p HD video recording, and a 1.3-megapixel camera on the front, Bluetooth 3.0 and Hotspot capabilities that make it possible to share the phone's 4G connection with up to 10 WiFi-enabled devices.

The Intuition is also among a growing number of devices to include NFC (Near Field Communication) technology. LG is including two programmable NFC tags with the device-using an LG Tag+ app, the tags can be programmed to perform a list of possible actions, such as dimming the display or turning off the ringer. LG has put together a selection of common modes-Office Mode, Car Mode, Sleep Mode-to further simplify the process.

Moving on to the newest Samsung handset: It's exclusive to Verizon and will arrive Sept. 6 for the low, low price of free after a $50 mail-in rebate.

The phone is an interesting one-a simple, fast device ideal for first-time smartphone users who plan to bring the phone to work.

The Galaxy Stellar is Samsung Approved for the Enterprise (SAFE), so it has 256-bit encryption on it, as well as support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync, virtual private networks (VPNs) and mobile device management (MDM) solutions.

The Stellar has a 4-inch display, is 4G LTE capable, and runs a 1.2GHz Snapdragon processor and Android Ice Cream Sandwich.

First-time smartphone users may appreciate the option to choose between Standard and Starter modes. The latter features a simplified home screen with the ability to call frequently phoned numbers without leaving the home screen, while the former is, as the name suggests, a more traditional Android experience.

The Stellar features a Media Hub, where users can buy or rent video content. The expected Google apps-Gmail, Google Talk, Google Maps, etc.-are also included, and so is a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera and a 3.2-megapixel camera on the back.

There's a microSD card slot with support for up to 32GB of storage, WiFi connectivity and a Backup Assistant Plus app that helps users store content in the cloud and easily access it.

The Verizon news comes ahead of what should be a busy week for the mobile industry-Motorola and Nokia have events planned for Sept. 5, at which each is expected to introduce a new phone, and Amazon has an event scheduled for the next day, at which it, too, according to the rumors, may introduce a smartphone.