Well, that didn't take long, did it? Just earlier today we were talking about how the Intercept was starting to make its way into bits and pieces of Sprint's system, but now, the announcement's here and it's the real deal. Most notably, the Android-powered landscape QWERTY slider will go to market for under $100 (by a penny, anyway) on contract after rebate, making it a value-oriented alternative for the monsters like the EVO 4G and Epic 4G that Sprint is pushing on the high end. Of course, if you pay a midrange price, you're going to get midrange features; the 3.2 megapixel cam with video capture, isn't going to blow anyone away, and amazingly, Sammy has gone with an EV-DO Rev. 0 radio (as opposed to Rev. A) which means you'll be limping along with slower data speeds than you'd expect from your average modern CDMA smartphone. Look for it to hit Sprint's site and stores starting this Sunday, July 11. Follow the break for the full press release.

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Combining the Power of Android with Sprint Value, Samsung Intercept(TM) Packs in the Features for Just $99.99

Full QWERTY keyboard, large touch-screen display and a premium social networking experience combine with the customization of Android to make Samsung Intercept a great value for businesses and consumers

OVERLAND PARK, Kan., Jul 07, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) --

Sprint (NYSE: S) and Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile), the No. 1 mobile phone provider in the United States1, today introduced a stylish addition to its growing portfolio of Android devices with Samsung Intercept. In addition to the 3.2-inch, touch-screen display, 3.2 MP camera and video, and full slide-out QWERTY keyboard, Samsung Intercept comes preloaded with social apps and one-touch picture posting to the top social sites.

Customers can purchase Samsung Intercept starting July 11 through all Sprint channels, including Web (www.sprint.com), Telesales (1-800-SPRINT1) and select national retail partners. Retail pricing will be just $99.99 (excluding taxes) after a $100 mail-in-rebate with a two-year service agreement on a new line activation or eligible upgrade on an Everything Plan with data. It will be available in two attractive colors - Gray Steel and Satin Pink.

Loaded with Android 2.1, Samsung Intercept provides access to popular Google(TM) mobile services, including Google Search(TM), Google Maps(TM), Gmail(TM) and YouTube(TM), and more than 50,000 applications available in Android Market(TM) today. It also features a powerful processor to make it a snap to maneuver within the device.

"Samsung Intercept is a valuable addition to our growing portfolio of Android phones with a rich Internet browsing experience, visual voicemail and practically all of the latest must-have features," said Kevin Packingham, senior vice president of product development for Sprint. "Best of all, at this price, we are able to bring the Android experience to a broader audience that will appreciate the versatility that comes with access to thousands of apps on Android Market. This is a great device for those who use their wireless device to manage a business or socialize with family and friends."

"The Intercept is a perfect example of Samsung's commitment to bring the latest Google mobile services, social applications and popular features to smart phones for the mass market," said Omar Khan, chief strategy officer for Samsung Mobile. "Users will enjoy the Intercept's stylish design, full QWERTY keyboard and access to full web browsing and Google services for a full-featured smart phone experience."

Great Price Without Sacrifice

Samsung Intercept makes menu and display navigation easy with a highly responsive optical joystick that virtually zips from item to item. It operates on the Sprint 3G network (EVDO-Rev. 0) and features Wi-Fi capability, integrated GPS navigation and accelerometer. Additional features include:

* Home screen that scrolls right to left for more space to organize widgets and apps
* 3.2 Megapixel camera and video camcorder
* MP3 Player with MicroSD card slot (supports up to 32 GB)
* Stereo Bluetooth(R) wireless technology
* Visual voicemail
* Sprint TV(R), Sprint Football Live and NASCAR Sprint Cup MobileSM
* Access to social networking sites Facebook(R), Flickr(R) and TwitterTM
* Access to personal and corporate e-mail
* Easily view Word, Excel, PowerPoint on-the-go to maximize productivity

Samsung Intercept requires Sprint's industry-leading Everything Data plans with Any Mobile, AnytimeSM that include unlimited Web, texting and calling to and from every mobile in America while on the Sprint network. Everything Data plans start at $69.99 per month - the same price Verizon and AT&T charge for unlimited talk only. (All price plans exclude surcharges and taxes.)

Sprint is the only wireless carrier to offer Ready Now service with trained retail associates to work one-on-one with customers to personalize their Samsung Intercept, set up features and demonstrate how it works before the customer leaves the store. Customers have the choice of sitting down with a Sprint retail associate at the time of purchase or they can schedule an appointment for a later time at www.sprint.com/storelocator.

More Satisfied Than Ever

Offering affordable plans to such feature-rich smartphones like Samsung Intercept is one of many reasons Sprint has excelled in customer satisfaction. Sprint is the most improved company in customer satisfaction, across all industries, over the last two years, according to results from the 2010 American Customer Satisfaction Index.

Sprint's improvement was driven in part by substantial gains in two aspects of the survey. In the area of customers' perceptions of value, Sprint now leads both AT&T and Verizon. The company also achieved an impressive improvement in the area of customer loyalty. With these gains, the company's overall ACSI score jumped 14 points during the last two years. In the last six years of the ACSI survey, no other company has improved its satisfaction score by that many points in a two-year period.

The improvements in the ACSI survey come as Sprint has seen nine consecutive quarters of improved customer satisfaction and first call resolution. The company's improvements have also been recognized by other independent third-parties, including Sprint winning the #1 spot for both overall satisfaction for wireless voice service providers and wireless data service providers in a Yankee Group and Mobile Enterprise magazine survey of large business decision makers. Sprint also ranked high in small and medium business customer satisfaction. Also noteworthy was Sprint's two-year Reputation Pulse(TM) score increase in Reputation Institute's 2010 U.S. Most Reputable Companies Study (published annually in Forbes). Sprint's 18.22 percent gain puts its improvement in the top 10 percent of the 150 largest U.S. companies, ahead of both AT&T and Verizon.

Sprint is also the first national wireless carrier to test, launch and market 4G technology, offering wireless 4G service today for select devices in 36 markets. In 2010, Sprint expects to launch 4G service in multiple markets, including Boston, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. For information, visit www.sprint.com/4G.

About Sprint Nextel

Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 48 million customers at the end of the first quarter of 2010 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, and is the first and only wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, Common Cents Mobile and Assurance Wireless and instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. With its customer-focused strategy, you can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.

About Samsung Telecommunications America

Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC, a Dallas-based subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., researches, develops and markets wireless handsets and telecommunications products throughout North America. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2009 consolidated sales of (US)$116.8 billion. Employing approximately 188,000 people in 185 offices across 65 countries, the company consists of eight independently operated business units: Visual Display, Mobile Communications, Telecommunication Systems, Digital Appliances, IT Solutions, Digital Imaging, Semiconductor and LCD. Recognized as one of the fastest growing global brands, Samsung Electronics is a leading producer of digital TVs, memory chips, mobile phones and TFT-LCDs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.

Visit www.sprint.com/newsroom or www.sprint.com/presskits for more information and images.

1 Based upon reported shipment data for Q1 2010, 2009, and 2008, Strategy Analytics' U.S. Market Share Handset Shipments Reports.

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Samsung Intercept for Sprint now totally official: July 11 for $100