Microsoft's latest smartphone platform, Windows Phone 8, is now available as several carriers start selling devices from HTC and Nokia.
Windows Phone 8: Star Features
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It's finally here. Windows Phone 8. The latest and greatest mobile operating system from Microsoft is available for sale in the U.S. Here's where and when you can get your hands on the new platform.
Windows Phone 8 is debuting first at the nation's two largest wireless network operators, AT&T and Verizon Wireless. Both have started to sell several different models. T-Mobile USA is following up with its own device launches next week. Sprint is sitting Windows Phone 8 out for the moment. It is taking a wait-and-see approach to the newest platform from Microsoft and hasn't committed to selling it.
AT&T -- AT&T is selling the HTC Windows Phone 8X, the Lumia 920 and the Lumia 820 in its stores. They are also available for purchase online.
The HTC 8X comes in several color and storage variants. The device is being sold in California Blue and LimeLight Yellow. The blue can be purchased with 8 GB or 16 GB of storage, and the yellow can be purchased only with 8 GB. The 8-GB models cost $99.99 with a new contract and the 16-GB model costs $199.99 with a new contract.
The Lumia 920 is sold in several different colors as well, but 32 GB is the only storage option. AT&T has priced it aggressively at $99.99 with a new contract. The Lumia 920, Nokia's flagship smartphone for the rest of the year, is exclusive to AT&T.
The Lumia 820 only comes in black and costs $49.99 with a new contract.
T-Mobile USA -- T-Mobile is offering the HTC 8X and the Nokia Lumia 810, which is a variant of the 820. It is launching both devices on November 14. The prices below are the final cost after applying a $50 mail-in rebate.
The HTC 8X costs $199.99 with one of T-Mobile's standard post-paid plans. It comes with 16 GB of storage.
The Lumia 810 costs $149.99 with one of T-Mobile's standard post-paid plans.
T-Mobile is also offering both with what it calls a "Value Plan." The Value Plans require a down payment on the device and then a $20-per-month payment toward the cost of the device in addition to the cost of the plan itself. Using this method, the 8X requires a $150 down payment and the 810 requires a $100 down payment.
Verizon Wireless -- Verizon Wireless has made its version of the HTC 8X and the Nokia Lumia 822 (also a variant of the 820) available for preorder. You can't pick one up in Verizon's retail stores this week, but if you preorder the device it will ship November 13. Prices for the Verizon models falls in line with that of other carriers.
The HTC 8X is being sold for $199.99 with a new contract. It comes with 16 GB of storage, in black, blue, and red variants.
The Lumia 822 is being sold for $99.99 with a new contract.
All the phones run Windows Phone 8 and have most of the same software features. The Nokia WP8 handsets have access to some features the HTC don't, including the ESPN Hub, Nokia Drive, Nokia Transport and other Nokia-made navigation tools.
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