When we first caught wind of the Samsung Gem, it looked to be destined for Verizon Wireless around September of last year. That date came and went with no announcement whatsoever, so the prevailing assumption was that the handset had been canned altogether by Big Red. Well, today, it looks like the Gem will be seeing some sort of official release for a CDMA carrier, after all. The only question is – which one?
This entry-level phone ships with a 3.2-inch display with anti-scratch, anti-smudge, and anti-reflective glass. Notice that the display isn’t super AMOLED, which has been a great selling point for many of Samsung’s Android devices. Sadly, the Gem misses out on the Super AMOLED party, but that might also be a benefit. Since you won’t have to pay for the costlier Super AMOLED display, we figure the Gem’s price-tag might be a little easier to swallow. The most glaring missing feature, though, is the lack of WiFi. That’s a deal-killer in our book.
This handset also ships with Android 2.1 Eclair, and since it’s yet to be released yet, I’d imagine that Samsung hasn’t even thought of upgrading it to Froyo yet. Samsung is coming out with handfuls of new Android phones these days, in a bid to cater to every demographic, and that means they’ll have less time to bang out software updates.
If the Gem doesn’t hit Verizon, there’s only one out of the four major carriers that could offer the handset. Sprint. I could actually see the Gem as a part of Sprint’s line up, but if it doesn’t end up making it, the Gem may find a good home at a regional carrier.
We’ll be sure to keep you up to date with this device, but until it’s actually released, it’ll be on the back burner. We have more interesting handsets headed our way, anyway.
[UPDATE:] It looks like this little Gem will indeed be hitting a regional carrier, that carrier being Cellular South. Apparently the model number of the device suggests this, and the Cellular South site already has a picture of the device lurking on the site somewhere. Release date is still unknown, but we will probably hear something soon, hopefully. [Via: pocket-now]