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8/3/2009
06:21 PM
Marin Perez
Marin Perez
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Verizon Slashes Smartphone Prices

Looks like it's dealing days for Verizon Wireless, as the nation's largest carrier has dropped the price of most of their smartphones to a cool $99 with a new contract. This is obviously in response to Apple dropping the iPhone 3G to $99, but it also paves the way for a new portfolio of Verizon smartphones.

Looks like it's dealing days for Verizon Wireless, as the nation's largest carrier has dropped the price of most of their smartphones to a cool $99 with a new contract. This is obviously in response to Apple dropping the iPhone 3G to $99, but it also paves the way for a new portfolio of Verizon smartphones.The company had already slashed the price of the BlackBerry Storm a few weeks ago, and users can now get devices like the HTC Touch Diamond, Touch Pro, and the Samsung Omnia for less than $100. I'm also noticing that the online version will give you a select phone for free with a second line, which cuts that price down ever more.

I spent some time with the two HTC products (the Sprint version however), and I thoroughly enjoyed them. Can't say I had much experience with the Omnia, but I remember they somehow thought introducing the handset on the same day the iPhone 3G was announced was a smart move.

But they haven't gone completely Crazy Gideon's on us, as the Samsung Saga and the BlackBerry Tour are still $199 with a new contract. The price cuts are a logical reaction to rival AT&T reducing the price of the iPhone 3G when it rolled out the iPhone 3GS, and it should help Verizon goose smartphone sales. The company said last week nearly 40% of handset sales were smartphones, and this move could help increase that.

More interestingly, it could also clear the shelves for some new handsets. I think it's far too early to be anticipating a Verizon Pre (coming early 2010), but we're hitting the right period for at least an announcement about the sequel to the BlackBerry Storm. A lot of people hate on the Storm, but I think its software updates and app ecosystem have made it a pretty darn good handset for business and multimedia. The clickable screen is not as good as a tactile keyboard, but it works well enough to get some work done on the go.

Besides a Storm 2, I think it's safe to assume a Touch Pro 2 may be on the way as well, and I would be ecstatic if this means we'll be seeing Verizon first Android phone soon. Let's hope Verizon stops their annoying habit of crippling their phones by locking in the GPS, removing RAM, or barring Wi-Fi.


Any thoughts on Verizon's smartphones? Feel free to drop me a line at mperez@techweb.com, or follow me on Twitter @marinperez.

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