AT&T expands LTE portfolio, announces first Windows Phone LTE smartphones

LAS VEGAS--AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) used its annual developer event to announce its ever-expanding LTE device portfolio, including two highly anticipated Windows Phone devices. The company also announced six new Android LTE devices, including two smartphones for just $50, indicating the company's desire to bring LTE to the mass market.

The introduction of two Windows Phone LTE smartphones is significant because they are the first LTE Windows Phone devices that will be available. HTC CEO Peter Chou joined Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO of AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets, to talk about the HTC Titan II, which  run on the Mango version of Windows and will have a 16 megapixel digital camera and a 4.7-inch display. Although Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia NYSE:NOK), also made an appearance at the event, Elop did not actually announce the make and model of the Nokia WP7 phone that AT&T will be offering.  Instead he touted the fact that it's the first LTE Windows Phone phone from Nokia to be available in the U.S. and encouraged attendees to look for more news later during a Nokia-sponsored media event held Monday.

AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega touted the company's LTE network, which now covers 74 million POPs.  And, he also garnered a few laughs from the audience by his company's LTE network "is great. It stays up and is reliable." The comment was a ding at Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), which recently suffered three outages on its LTE network in December.

De la Vega said AT&T will launch six Android LTE devices in the coming months, including the Sony Xperia Ion, which is exclusive to AT&T and will debut in the second quarter. The company will also launch the Samsung Galaxy II Skyrocket HD, the Pantech Burst and the Samsung Exhilarate. The Pantech Burst and the Samsung Exhilerate will have a price-tag of under $50. According to Recon Analytics analyst Roger Entner this price-point is significant because no other operator has yet offered LTE smartphones at that entry-level price.

AT&T will also offer the Pantech Element, a waterproof Android tablet from Pantech. AT&T plans to offer a promotion to entice consumers to purchase both the Element and the Burst from Pantech for $249.99 with a two-year contract.

For more:
- see this press release from HTC
- see this press release from AT&T

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