Verizon Wireless - Holiday Handsets 2012
Apple iPhone 5
Price: $199.99 for the 16 GB model, $299.99 for the 32 GB model and $399.99 for the 64 GB model, all with a two-year contract.
Features: The iPhone 5 has a 4-inch Retina display, up from 3.5 inches on the previous models, as well as a 1136 x 640 screen resolution. The iPhone sports an Apple-designed A6 application processor, which Apple said is twice as fast as the dual-core A5 chip inside the iPhone 4S. The gadget has a "dynamic antenna" and supports not only LTE but also CDMA-1xEV-DO, HSPA+, HSPA, dual-carrier HSDPA, EDGE and GPRS, as well as 802.11n Wi-Fi at 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz.
Positioning: The iPhone 5 is the first iPhone with LTE, and Verizon is emphasizing the fact that it has the largest LTE network in the United States. The carrier's LTE coverage extends across 250 million POPs in 410 markets, giving it a distinct advantage over AT&T and Sprint.
Apple iPad mini
Price: $329 with Wi-Fi-only connectivity and 16 GB of storage, $429 for the 32 GB model and $529 for the 64 GB model. With LTE connectivity, the iPad mini is $459 with 16 GB of storage, $559 for the 32 GB model and $659 for the 64 GB model.
Features: The smaller iPad has a 7.9-inch screen and the same resolution as the iPad 2, 1024 x 768 pixels, not the Retina Display found on the latest larger iPads. The iPad mini has Apple's dual-core A5 processor, LTE, a FaceTime HD camera and the Lightning dock connector used in the iPhone 5.
Positioning: The iPad mini is also Apple's attempt to go after the smaller, 7-inch tablet market. Although Apple insists the iPad mini is superior in every respect to other smaller tablets (a dubious set of claims), clearly the competition from Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's Kindle Fire HD pushed Apple to come out with its own smaller tablet. Verizon Communications CEO Lowell McAdam said that during the Thanksgiving weekend Verizon enjoyed an uptick in the number of tablets that customers added to their Share Everything accounts. For $10 per month customers can add a tablet the number of devices that can share a pool of data for one account, so pushing tablet sales could be a way to encourage more customers to choose Share Everything plans.
Droid DNA by HTC
Price: $199.99 with a two-year contract
Features: The LTE-capable DNA's most noticeable feature is that it sports a 5-inch screen with a true 1080p HD super LCD 3 display. The DNA runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and HTC Sense 4+ and is powered by a quad-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor.
Positioning: The Droid DNA joins the Samsung Galaxy Note II and LG Intuition in Verizon's "phablet" lineup--phones that toe the line between smartphone and tablet. For HTC, the DNA is a continuation of its Droid-branded relationship with Verizon and an attempt to steal some of the market share that Samsung's Galaxy Note family has been gobbling up.
Price: $199.99 with new two-year contract
Features: The Intuition is an LTE version of the Optimus Vu "phablet" LG unveiled at the Mobile World Congress trade show in February. The gadget runs Android 4.0 and sports a 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, 1 GB of RAM, a 5-inch screen with a 4:3 aspect ratio, an 8-megapixel camera and 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera and mobile hotspot capability.
Positioning: For LG, the support of Verizon, the nation's largest wireless carrier, is a major win. LG is also positioning the device not only at consumers but at business users as well. The Intuition features the Polaris Office app, which allows users to view, create, edit and share documents, spreadsheets and presentations, as well as the QuickMemo app, which allows customers to draw or write messages with an included Rubberdium pen or with their finger.
Nokia Lumia 822
Price: $99.99 with a two-year contract
Features: The Lumia 822 runs Windows Phone 8 and has a dual-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, a 4.3-inch screen, 8-megpaixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics and a 1.2-megapixel HD front-facing camera. The Lumia 822 also supports various Nokia services, including its Drive+ turn-by-turn navigation service featuring offline access and pre-loaded U.S. maps, Nokia Music for streaming music, Nokia Transport for metro transit services and City Lens, Nokia's augmented reality service.
Positioning: Verizon's launch of the Lumia 822 is a major boost for Nokia--previously, AT&T and T-Mobile were the only carriers selling Nokia's Lumia phones. With a $100 price point, the 822 is clearly positioned as a mid-range smartphone, but its specs and services are more than respectable. With Verizon making a big marketing push for Windows Phone in the fourth quarter, the Lumia 822 could be a distinct beneficiary of all that attention.
Windows Phone 8X by HTC
Price: $199.99 with a two-year contract
Features: The Windows Phone 8X runs Windows Phone 8 and sports a unique, thin unibody design and comes in bold colors like California Blue, Graphite Black and Flame Red. The 8X has a 4.3-inch 720p HD display, a dual-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, 16 GB of storage and is the first Windows Phone to feature Beats Audio technology.
Positioning: Although Verizon is highlighting the Nokia Lumia 822 as part of its Windows Phone marketing blitz, the HTC 8X is definitely Verizon's premier Windows Phone right now. HTC needs the 8X to perform strongly in the fourth quarter to boost HTC's flagging smartphones sales, especially considering that HTC is not bringing the mid-range 8S Windows Phone 8 device to the U.S. market. HTC and Microsoft have teamed up for a joint marketing campaign for the phones, which clearly bear Microsoft's influence: After all, in the full official brand name Windows Phone comes before HTC.