updated 05:45 pm EDT, Tue October 11, 2011
Verizon's first LTE QWERTY slider
Although Samsung's Nexus Prime did not make a showing today at CTIA in San Diego, the company did bring along its Stratosphere handset that will be headed to Verizon. Electronista had a chance to take an early look at the upcoming handset. The device bears a close resemblance to the WiMAX-equipped Epic 4G that is currently offered through Sprint.
From the front, the Stratosphere offers an appearance similar to the Epic 4G; both share a glossy black bezel around a four-inch Super AMOLED display. Deploying the slide-out keyboard shows a redesigned QWERTY keyboard with plenty of space between each key.
The phone feels solid and well built, however the robust construction makes for a very thick profile. It appears to be a tradeoff for the comfortable keyboard, which is easier to use than cramped layouts on competing devices such as the Droid 3.
The Stratosphere seems to be fairly fast, despite its single-core processor. The device will have to compete against the Captivate Glide, with a dual-core Tegra 2 chip, that will be offered from AT&T.
Overall, the Stratosphere is a capable handset that finally allows QWERTY-slider fans to take advantage of Verizon's LTE network.