AT&T launches LTE smartphones HTC Vivid and Samsung Skyrocket on Nov. 6

AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) will launch its first two LTE-enabled smartphones, the HTC Vivid and Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket, on Nov. 6, timed to coincide with an expansion of AT&T's LTE network coverage to four more markets.

Click here for pictures and specs of AT&T's new LTE phones.

AT&T said it will launch the HTC Vivid for $199.99 with a two-year contract and the Samsung Skyrocket for $249.99 with a two-year contract. The carrier said its LTE smartphone data plans will be the same as those for its HSPA-enabled smartphones: $15 for 200 MB, with a charge of $15 for an extra 200 MB, and $25 for 2 GB, with a charge of $10 for an extra 1 GB of data. Customers who want to use their device as a mobile hotspot can sign up for the DataPro 4 GB plan for $45 a month, which lets users tether or share the data connection across multiple devices.

In addition to launching the devices in its company stores and online Nov. 6, AT&T also said it will expand its LTE service to  Athens, Ga., Baltimore, Boston and Washington, D.C. AT&T currently offers LTE service in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio, and it plans to reach 15 markets and 70 million POPs covered by year-end.

The HTC Vivid runs on the Gingerbread version of Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android platform and sports a dual-core 1.2 GHz processor, 4.5-inch qHD display, enhanced 8-megapixel camera with f2.2 28mm wide-angle lens for low-light photos, 1080p HD video recording and 16 GB of internal memory with a microSD slot capable of holding up to 32 GB.

Meanwhile, the Samsung Skyrocket also runs on Gingerbread and has a dual-core 1.5 GHz processor, 4.5-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with LED flash and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, 1080p HD video recording and 16 GB of internal memory with a microSD slot capable of holding up to 32 GB.

Click here to watch AT&T's LTE promotional video.

AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets CEO Ralph de la Vega said earlier this month that the company's first LTE smartphones will be thinner and more power-efficient than current LTE smartphones, including those from rival Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ). AT&T is playing catch up to Verizon, which currently offers LTE service covering more than 160 million POPs. Verizon, which launched LTE in December 2010, also has 14 LTE devices in its lineup, including six LTE smartphones. Verizon Wireless CEO Dan Mead recently told Reuters that the carrier will have more than 20 LTE devices by year-end.

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