We’ve just received firm confirmation that Verizon Wireless’ first netbook offering  — the HP Mini 1151NR — is currently starting to touch down in stores across the country. We first scooped it in February and then confirmed the model in March so the only thing left to tell you, of course, is the launch date. Mark it down in your calendars folks: May 17th via all channels; the same day Verizon’s MiFi personal hotspot drops. Pricing isn’t yet appearing in Big Red’s system but we’re hearing it will be $199 with a 2-year contract after MIR. Of course some people will jump right into complaining and adding up monthly fees ($40 or $60/month), saying that this isn’t a good deal. It’s true — you’ll end up spending between $960 and $1,440 over your 2-year contract period for data access. To those people, we suggest buying a comparable netbook with an integrated data card ($450ish) or a comparable data-less netbook ($300ish) and a USB modem/data card off contract ($250ish). Then pay, yeah, $40 or $60 every month for data anyway.

Thanks, krazyVZW!

Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than a decade, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.