Sprint announced on Tuesday that it will deploy its CDMA-based push-to-talk network on October 2nd. “Our customers are asking for broadband and push-to-talk,” president-Sprint Business Paget Alves said. “We’ve seen steadily increasing demand for faster data speeds, better and broader coverage, and more applications on push-to-talk devices. Sprint Direct Connect is designed to solve for all three.” The new service supports Group Connect and TeamDC for connecting with up to 20 or 200 other Direct Connect users at the same time, the ability to check if anyone is available using an “Availability Notification,” call alerts with texts and more. Sprint expects the new network to grow to the size of its current CDMA voice coverage area by the end of 2012. The Kyocera DuraMax is one of the first devices to run on the new network. It offers a rugged form factor that meets Military Standard 810G specifications and is equipped with GPS, Bluetooth, a 3.2-megapixel camera and more. The DuraMax will be available on October 2nd for $69.99 with a new two-year contract. Read on for the full CDMA PTT press release from Sprint. More →
Samsung announced on Tuesday that its Galaxy Tab 8.9 Android tablet will be available in the United States beginning on October 2nd. There are two models of the Galaxy Tab 8.9, a 32GB version that will cost $569 and a 16GB model priced at $469. The Galaxy Tab 8.9 measures just 8.5mm thin and runs Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface on top of Android 3.1 (Honeycomb). The Galaxy Tab 8.9 is powered by a dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 T250S processor, has a 6,100 mAh battery, a 3-megapixel camera, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for video chats and, as its name implies, an 8.9-inch Gorilla Glass screen with a 1280 x 800-pixel resolution. Samsung also confirmed that its Galaxy Player 4.0 and Galaxy Player 5.0 personal media players will launch in the United States on October 16th for $229 and $269, respectively. Read on for the full press release. More →
Sprint will revamp and deploy a new Direct Connect push-to-talk service on October 2nd, SprintFeed reports. According to a purported leaked internal screen shot, the new service will support international push-to-talk direct connect, an option that isn’t available from competing services offered by Verizon Wireless and AT&T. In addition, the service will support Land Mobile Radio interoperability (LMR), which is typically used by the military or emergency services and is also offered by Verizon Wireless. Other features will include support for simultaneous data and push-to-talk functionality, support for up to 200 people on a push-to-talk group session, per-second push-to-talk billing and notifications alerting you when other contacts are available for Direct Connect. Sprint has yet to officially announce details surrounding the revamped service. More →
AT&T confirmed on Wednesday that its Samsung GALAXY S II smartphone will be available on October 2nd for $199.99 with a new two-year contract. The Samsung GALAXY S II is equipped with a dual-core 1.2GHz Samsung Exynos processor, a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 16GB of storage, an 8-megapixel camera capable of recording HD video chat and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for video chats. AT&T’s version of the smartphone also supports its 4G HSPA+ network. BGR went hands-on with AT&T’s S II last month, and we’ll have our full review in the coming weeks.