U.S. consumers who've been impatiently waiting to buy a Samsung Galaxy S4 won't have to wait much longer. Today, the company announced that seven different carriers will offer the high-end handset on their networks starting sometime this month. In addition to providing Galaxy S4s for the four major national wireless providers -- AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile -- Samsung will have versions for such smaller networks as U.S. Cellular, Cricket and C Spire.
Unveiled in March, the Galaxy S4 is Samsung's latest flagship phone with a 5-inch, 1080p screen, a 13-MP camera, and a powerful 1.9-GHz quad-core Qualcomm processor. The device also comes with a slew of powerful features, including TV remote control software, S Fitness for keeping track of your health and S Translator. A dual camera mode lets you shoot from the front and rear cameras at the same time.
The most unique innovations inside the Galaxy S4 are its gesture controls. For instance, you can wave your hand in front of the device to change music tracks or flip through photos. The nifty Smart Scroll feature lets you scroll content just by tilting the device in your hand, while Smart Pause pauses video playback when you look away from the device.
In addition to buying the Galaxy S4 directly from the seven carriers themselves, users will be able to find the phone at a number of national retail outlets, including Costco, Best Buy, Radio Shack, Staples, Sam's Club, Target and Wal-Mart. The Galaxy S4 will be available in either Black Mist or White Frost colors with internal storage memory of either 16 or 32GB.
The AT&T version of the Galaxy S4 costs $199 and will ship April 30th, and T-Mobile will make the device available April 24th for $149 up front as part of its Simple Choice Plan. Sprint's version will go on sale April 27th for $249 on a two-year contract, but new customers who switch their number to Sprint from another carrier will receive a $100 instant credit. Other carriers should announce their pricing and availability shortly.
When we went hands-on with the Galaxy S4, we were impressed with its display, gesture controls and sheer innovation. This device could easily be the best-selling smartphone of 2013.