Access to "America's largest 4G network"-or, at least, really fast speeds-just got even cheaper. Three retailers have cut pricing for T-Mobile's flagship 4G smartphone, the myTouch 4G, from $199.99 to as low as $79.99 with a two-year contract, Into Mobile reported.
At Target Mobile, priced at $79.99, the myTouch 4G ships for free, while at Wirefly that price includes a mobile backup service. Radio Shack is also offering a deal, dipping the price to $149.99.
The HTC-made myTouch 4G runs Android 2.2 (or "Froyo") and features 4G, 3G, EDGE, WiFi (b/g/n), Bluetooth 2.1 and GPS connectivity. The processor is a second-generation 1GHz Snapdragon, from Qualcomm, and the display is a 3.8-inch TFT widescreen, with a resolution of 800 by 480 pixels.
T-Mobile makes a point, in an ad that began airing Nov. 3, that the myTouch 4G can video chat with or without WiFi, and to that end there's a front-facing camera, in addition to a 5-megapixel camera on the back, with video at 30 frames per second. There are 4GB of internal memory, plus an 8GB SD card, though it can support up to a 32GB card. And for a few extra bucks a month, the myTouch 4G can be used as a hotspot for up to four other devices.
Another perk: a Genius Button on the front of the phone puts the phone to work-e-mailing, searching the Web, finding an address, etc.-using voice commands, with the "genius" bit of things being that the phone "learns" its owner's voice over time and so should make fewer mistakes.
But its most exciting feature, again, is its capacity to run on T-Mobile's HSPA+ network, which as of Nov. 3 the company officially decided to call 4G, instead of the less-exciting "3.5G." Verizon, which plans to roll out its 4G LTE-based network this quarter, is likely a bit miffed at having some of its thunder stolen. While the move was smart marketing on T-Mobile's part, say analysts, it's likely made itself a target for some retaliatory advertising-normally pointed at competitor AT&T Wireless.
"I'm imagining an -Our 4G vs. their 4G' ad," analyst Ken Hyers, with Technology Business Research, told eWEEK.
However, as the International Telecommunications Union has yet to formally define 4G, there's no foul play in using the title-a point T-Mobile seemed to suggest in quoting Yankee Group Research Fellow Chris Nicoll in a Nov. 2 press release.
"Consumers do not understand the technical alphabet soup of technologies involved in 4G," Nicoll offered, "but for our purposes we define WiMax, LTE and HSPA+ as 4G technologies."
For now, T-Mobile is still offering the myTouch 4G for $199, with a two-year contract and after a $50 mail-in rebate. As the attractive brunette playing the "myTouch 4G" in the carrier's new AT&T-bashing ad says: Bummer.