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Summary:

Sprint revealed pricing and timing for the EVO 4G phone. The most advanced Android phone to date will be available for $199 with a carrier subsidy. Adobe has taken time from its war of words with Apple to get ready for the Flash Player for Android.

Sprint this week officially launched the Android-based EVO 4G phone. The EVO will cost $199 with a two-year contract and require a $79.99 monthly plan that provides 450 anytime talk minutes along with unlimited data, texting and calling to other mobile phones. However, the pricing includes a $10 “premium data charge,” which already has prospective buyers complaining. They’re interpreting the fee as a 4G tax, yet customers in areas without 4G coverage will be subject to it along with those in areas that do have 4G. The EVO 4G will be available on June 4 from Sprint and various retailers.

Meanwhile, Android is increasingly the focus of patent concerns, as HTC this week countersued Apple for alleged patent infringement in relation to Android. The filing comes after HTC signed an agreement with Microsoft providing the handset maker rights to use a broad spectrum of Redmond’s patents covering mobile phones after Microsoft expressed concern that Android infringed on its intellectual property. Such a move could pave the way for Microsoft asking other Android handset makers to sign similar licensing deals.

Next week will bring the Google I/O developer conference, where Adobe is expected to release a beta version of the Flash Player 10.1, which Android phone owners have been anxiously awaiting as it’s expected to bring the full web experience to the Android platform. Early versions of Flash have been available for a while to Nexus One owners willing to install unofficial software on the device. NewTeeVee found a demonstration of the new Flash Player running on a Nexus One by Adobe itself.

By James Kendrick

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  1. “Meanwhile, Android is increasingly the focus of patent concerns, as HTC this week countersued Apple for alleged patent infringement in relation to Android.”

    I took a look at HTC’s filing and to say the least it’s very weak. One patent was granted only a day or two prior to filing. Also, I’m not sure about “in relation to Android” bit. Not only isn’t HTC’s responsibility to defend anything Android, it would be odd on one hand for HTC to defend Andriod and on the other to agree with Microsoft that parts of Android are infringing on the latter’s patents.

    “The filing comes after HTC signed an agreement with Microsoft providing the handset maker rights to use a broad spectrum of Redmond’s patents covering mobile phones after Microsoft expressed concern that Android infringed on its intellectual property. Such a move could pave the way for Microsoft asking other Android handset makers to sign similar licensing deals.”

    A bold statement since no one has linked the Microsoft statement with the HTC deal. Also, if Microsoft was to ask Andriod handset manufacturers for money based on unproven allegations of patent infringement on the part of Google, two well know terms come to mind: “extortion” and “protection money.” Not only is Microsoft require to deal directly with Google to prove any infringement, imagine the horrific backlash if Microsoft did ask handset makers for money on claims that were later refuted in court.

    No. The way this plays out in the real world is Microsoft takes Google to court. If Microsoft wins or Google settles or some combination thereof, Microsoft could then strike deals in regard to the disputed patents in whatever way it saw fit.

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    1. @Ray this is a very good point.
      And in some ways makes James Kendrick, the writer of this story, guilty of FUD towards the Android platform.
      Bad form.
      Way to loose respect. (For the hole Giga network.)

      If your going to write about this, better to get more details and not paint gossip as fact.
      James

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  2. worldbfree4me Sunday, May 16, 2010

    The $10 premium includeds no caps for 3g and 4g while tethering… Sprint also includes unlimited text, nav, mobile to mobile in addition to data with their plans. The best in the biz mind you!

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  3. [...] Android This Week: Sprint Unveils EVO 4G Pricing; Patent Infringement Accusations Fly Sprint (s s) this week officially launched the Android-based EVO 4G phone. The EVO will cost $199 with a two-year [...] [...]

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  4. James, the whole patent thing is a joke. The patent wars will soon die. No single company holds patent for all of the Mobile phone features (from airplane mode to multi touch). Now that the business is consolidated (with HP buying Palm) the remaining players in the patent war are cash rich ( Apple, Microsoft, Google, HTC, Nokia, RIMM). I guess it will end up in truce between on companies involved. It would be nice if they all put the lawyer money to R&D. The core issue is Apple started it. Now everyone is part of it. Apple is scared of the rest copying their technology , which I agree with. However the nature of the business is such that any new features can be copied by competitors. In reality Apple copied a bunch of patents from Palm from their original portfolio. So no point crying foul. Hopefully HTC with the help of Google will “work with ” Apple. The Evo 4G will be released as per schedule, and will be a hit.

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    1. @gbp I hope your right. I cannot wait for the Android army of phones to wipe the floor with Apple. I know Apple must be shocked that Android is already doing so well. A year ahead of schedule.
      Once we get the better Android with real full web experience in that it supports flash. We will have apples to apple comparison.
      Flash on phone is not so important but flash on Pad is a major issue.

      In terms of Patents, I hope software Patents are abandoned ASAP. they do exactly the opposite to the intention.

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  5. repeal the $10 fee. noevofee.com

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  6. [...] subscribers, however, until they upgrade or activate a new smartphone. Sprint first introduced a premium data charge on 4G devices like the Evo, saying it was necessary so it could offer unlimited data on its 4G network. But now, even users [...]

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  7. [...] out early with the first 4G phone in the U.S., Sprint has faced increasing competition in the smartphone space as carriers load up on the latest [...]

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