Too often, "expected summer launches" translate into "the very last day possible," so we were happy to learn that Sprint's latest collaboration with Motorola, the Photon 4G, will be available July 31st for the usual $200 on contract. To say the upcoming Android device will come loaded is an understatement: it'll ship with Gingerbread, a Tegra 2 dual-core 1GHz CPU, one full GB of RAM, a 4.3-inch qHD display, dual cameras (8 megapixel rear, VGA front) and 16GB of internal memory. Not surprisingly, Sprint's also integrating its signature Sprint ID feature into the user interface. While the device will be available to the general public on July 31st, Premier Customers will have the golden opportunity to get it online three days earlier. If you were perched on the fence about the HTC EVO 3D, this may be the only Sprint phone that's ready to push you in either direction. Full PR following the break.
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Motorola PHOTON4G Debuts on July 31 for $199.99

Sprint ID just added to impressive list of features for Sprint's first international 4G smartphone

OVERLAND PARK, Kan., Jul 13, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Offering a phone packed with a powerful balance of features to complement a consumers personal and professional life, Sprint and Motorola Mobility today announced the July 31 availability of Sprint's first international 4G smartphone, Motorola PHOTON(TM) 4G. Motorola PHOTON 4G, featuring a 1GHz dual-core processor, will cost $199.99 (excludes taxes) with a new line or eligible upgrade and two-year service agreement.

Sprint Premier Customers will have the opportunity to purchase Motorola PHOTON 4G -- online only -- three days before the national launch, while supplies last. Customers who have elected to receive email notifications from Sprint will be notified of the details on July 28. Premier customers can also log on to their account at www.sprint.com on July 28, click "show me my rewards" and then "Sprint Premier Community" for additional details.

"Sprint is thrilled to build on the strength of our relationship with Motorola by bringing customers Motorola's first Sprint 4G device with a dual-core processor," said Fared Adib, vice president-Product Development, Sprint. "Motorola PHOTON 4G brings our customers the latest in Android technology combined with enterprise-quality security for business users and international GSM capabilities for those who travel abroad. It is spectacular to bring yet another Sprint 4G device to our customers."

Making Android Easy

Motorola PHOTON 4G is Sprint's seventh Sprint ID-capable device. Sprint ID delivers a variety of apps, widgets, shortcuts, ringtones and wallpapers -- designed to meet users' specific mobile needs and interests -- in a few simple clicks. Sprint ID packs are free to download with an Everything Data plan, and users can download five at once -- including Professional (features tools to help busy professionals with travel plans, organization, communication), Green (tips to live a greener lifestyle), MTV Music ID (mobile music experience), HSN (shopping on the go) and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ID Pack. To see all Sprint ID packs, visit www.sprint.com/sprintid .

Built with Android 2.3 Gingerbread, Motorola PHOTON 4G, combined with Sprint's 4G network, lets users browse, download and multitask at maximum speeds to support their busy lifestyles. Motorola PHOTON 4G provides an array of versatile tools, such as the Motorola webtop application, allowing users to access and create content from a larger screen while connected to a Motorola HD Station dock (available for purchase following device availability).

Additional features include:

-- Dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor with each core running at 1GHz and 1GB of RAM

-- Large 4.3-inch touchscreen with qHD (Quarter High Definition) display

-- Dual cameras -- 8-megapixel, dual-LED flash camera with front-facing webcam and VGA front-facing camera for video chat

-- Android Market(TM) for access to more than 200,000 useful applications, widgets and games available for download to customize the experience

-- 16GB of onboard memory, support for up to 32GB SD Card, for a total of up to 48GB

-- Worldphone capabilities to access emails, calendars and news from anywhere around the globe

-- 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot capability, supporting up to eight devices on the Sprint 3G or 4G networks.

-- Supports critical IT device policies commonly requested by enterprises and governmental entities, including integration ease, cost-of-management and data security concerns

Robust Accessory Ecosystem

Customers will appreciate the wide variety of Sprint and Motorola exclusive accessories available to customize their Motorola PHOTON 4G experience. Options include

-- Paired with the HD Station, which includes a Wireless Remote and HDMI Cable, users can do more than ever on a larger screen. When docked, the Motorola PHOTON 4G launches the Webtop application, providing users with instant access to full Firefox(R) multi-window browsing capabilities. Additionally, users can connect up to three USB peripherals, such as a keyboard, mouse or memory stick to be even more productive at home or on-the-go. The HD Station will be available when the device launches for $99.99 (excludes tax).

-- The full-size Wireless Keyboard allows Motorola PHOTON 4G users to work faster with Bluetooth(R) technology and a super thin design. The Wireless Keyboard provides quick access to Android(R) apps using dedicated shortcut keys and navigate through Web apps powered by Android in a snap. Available when the device launches, the Wireless Keyboard will retail for $69.99 (excludes tax).

-- Hitting the open road for summer vacation? The Vehicle Navigation Dock for Motorola PHOTON 4G is the ultimate travel companion providing users with easy access to maps, favorite contacts, hands-free calling, music, turn-by-turn navigation and more. Equipped with integrated Motorola ESP technology to automate the screen preferences, and allows streaming audio & music via the 3.5mm audio jack through the vehicle speakers. The Vehicle Navigation Dock will be available when the device launches for $59.99 (excludes tax).

-- When it comes time to recharge Motorola PHOTON 4G, Sprint offers a wide variety of power solutions, including a Battery Only Charger and Battery Bundle. This high performing, 1700mAh Lithium Ion replacement battery gives the device the power to talk, send texts, take pictures, or just be on standby. The bundle includes a battery-only charger, providing users the option to charge the spare battery separately and is available on August 21 for $49.99 (excludes tax).

Sprint offers a variety of cases, skins and gels to protect Motorola PHOTON 4G and other devices from inevitable nicks and scratches. Sprint offers the following phone covers and wraps for Motorola PHOTON 4G. Each of the accessories below will be available on July 31.

-- A Holster and Shield Combo make a nice protective cover to prevent scuffs and scratches. This cover and holster combination carry solution provides convenient protection for the Motorola PHOTON 4G device. It is available for $24.99 (excludes tax).

-- The protective Gel surrounds Motorola PHOTON 4G like protective gloves with precision cut-outs for access to the device's bright screen, control buttons and keypad. It's available in purple and retails for $19.99 (excludes tax).

-- The two-piece Phone Cover for Motorola PHOTON 4G slides together easily to protect the top and bottom of the device. Available in gray with black leather inlay, the phone cover will retail for $21.99 (excludes tax).

Additional accessories will be available after launch. Customers seeking more information can visit their local Sprint store or www.sprint.com/accessories .

Motorola PHOTON 4G requires activation on one of Sprint's Everything Data plans plus a required $10 Premium Data add-on charge for smartphones. Sprint's Everything Data plan with Any Mobile, Anytime(SM) includes unlimited web, texting and calling to and from any mobile in America while on the Sprint Network, starting at just $69.99 per month plus required $10 Premium Data add-on charge -- a savings of $39.99 per month versus Verizon's comparable plan with unlimited talk, text and 2GB web or $9.99 per month versus Verizon's 450-minute plan with unlimited text and 2GB web. The Mobile Hotspot option is available for an additional $29.99 per month supporting up to eight Wi-Fi enabled devices simultaneously. (Pricing excludes taxes and surcharges.)

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Motorola's Photon 4G ships to Sprint on July 31st: $200 on contract