AT&T said it will begin selling the Android 2.2-based Samsung Infuse 4G May 15 for $199.99 on contract, marking the carrier’s second exclusive 4G smartphone since it launched the Motorola Atrix 4G in February.
At 8.99 millimeters (0.35 inches) thick, the Infuse 4G will be the thinnest 4G smartphone, albeit with a larger, 4.5-inch Super AMOLED Plus (super active-matrix organic LED plus) touch-screen and a virtual QWERTY keyboard for input.
Samsung’s latest smartphone display technology, which eWEEK viewed on the Samsung Droid Charge, offers 50 percent more sub-pixels for crisp colors in light and dark environments.
While the Droid Charge is powered by a modest 1GHz processor, the Infuse 4G sports a 1.2 GHz processor for speedier application performance.
This extra processing power will come in handy for graphics-intensive applications such as Angry Birds. The smartphone also comes pre-loaded with a special version of Angry Birds, featuring an exclusive hidden level for Infuse 4G owners.
Angry Birds players will be able to unlock a special Golden Egg level of the game. Should players complete this level, they will be able to register to win Samsung prizes.
As some added incentive for buying the Infuse 4G, the first 500,000 Infuse 4G units sold will include a $25 voucher for consumers to use for downloading TV and movie content from Samsung’s Media Hub.
These features, also offered on the Droid Charge and HTC ThunderBolt from Verizon Wireless, have become table stakes for high-end smartphones today. However, selling 500,000 units of any one Android phone is no mean feat; the ThunderBolt shipped 260,000 units through April.
The Infuse 4G also features an 8-megapixel camera with auto-focus and flash that shoots high-definition 720p video, as well as a 1.3MP front-facing camera enables video chat.
The Hub applications leverage progressive downloading, which allows users to watch content almost immediately while the rest of the file downloads to the smartphone. The Infuse 4G also comes with a 2GB microSD card, expandable up to 32GB, preloaded with trailers for movies that will premier this summer.
The Infuse 4G appears to be a promising handset for AT&T, which at CES promised to offer 20 4G devices and 12 Android handsets and tablets over the course of 2011.
The product should help AT&T compete with Verizon’s Droid Charge and ThunderBolt, as well as the Sprint Samsung Nexus S 4G and T-Mobile Sidekick 4G Android handsets.
Samsung Infuse 4G will be available from AT&T’s stores and Website. A minimum $15 data plan is required.