Samsung Infuse 4G announced for AT&T: 4.5-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, crazy thin

First introduced just last year on the Wave, it feels like Super AMOLED was just starting to get its sea legs... but here we go again: Samsung's latest handset -- announced today in collaboration with AT&T at CES -- is the first to tout "Super AMOLED Plus" technology that features a 50 percent boost in sub-pixel count, promising improvements both in contrast and outdoor readability. Maybe more importantly, the display clocks in at a whopping 4.5 inches, besting HTC's 4.3-inch range (the EVO 4G, Desire HD, and likely the Thunderbolt) without getting dangerously close to Dell Streak territory. It's got an 8 megapixel camera on back paired with a 1.3 megapixel shooter up front, a 1.2GHz single-core Hummingbird processor, and still somehow promises to be the thinnest smartphone on AT&T when it launches at a to-be-determined date. Now, the controversy: despite the name, the Infuse 4G apparently doesn't have a hint of LTE -- it's HSPA+, which means AT&T's now playing the same game as T-Mobile.

We've had a brief chance to play with an early Infuse 4G dummy unit, so we weren't able to turn it on, but we got a pretty good impression of how it feels. Basically, we came away encouraged that 4.5 inches isn't going to feel too big for practical use -- if you're accustomed to something like an EVO, you probably won't skip a beat (that's undoubtedly due in part to the fact that the Infuse seems to be quite a bit thinner). We're told the tastefully textured matte rear cover that we saw wasn't final, but we're crossing our fingers that the retail unit doesn't diverge far from what they've done here, because it felt exceptionally high-quality and looked a whole lot better than the typical glossy plastic on the existing Galaxy S series. Speaking of Galaxy S, the Infuse is described as "a Galaxy S phone" -- so yeah, that brand isn't going away any time soon. Software-wise, we obviously weren't able to get a feel for speed on the non-functional model, but you can expect the usual TouchWiz skin atop Android 2.2; sure, Gingerbread would've been nice at launch, but you can dry your tears on that 1.2GHz silicon.