Thursday’s news that Verizon won’t be selling the Samsung Galaxy S II disappointed many, but Friday’s news may make up for it. According to the Sammy Hub enthusiast site, Samsung will introduce a larger, updated Galaxy S II model next month that supports LTE mobile broadband networks. The phone is expected to be a multimode device, capable of working on GSM and WCDMA networks in addition to LTE, which could make it more appealing for Verizon if it also includes CMDA voice support.
When Verizon said it wouldn’t carry the current SGS2 model, I suspected it was due to the lack of LTE support: A Verizon spokesperson specifically noted that the carrier sells the Samsung Droid Charge, an LTE-capable phone. Now that Verizon has spent billions on its next-generation 4G data network, more of its higher-end devices are likely to feature LTE support. And these devices may help boost revenues as consumers could hit monthly bandwidth caps faster, due to the speedy connections.
Another thought: Handset makers work with carriers on various smartphone models, so if Verizon knew an LTE version of the GS2 was coming soon, it makes sense for the carrier to have passed on the current model. The timing of this news also corresponds with Samsung’s new smartphone-naming conventions from earlier this week: LTE support will be added to model names, implying that this phone would likely be called the Samsung Galaxy S II LTE.
In addition to the multimode network support, this updated SGS2 model is expected to boost a few other specifications as well, if Sammy Hub is correct. A beefier 1850 mAh battery will power the phone; the current model uses a 1650 mAh power pack. The Super AMOLED Plus display should be bumped from 4.3 inches to 4.5, and the new phone may also have a faster 1.5 GHz dual-core processor. Samsung plans to introduce the current Galaxy S II in the U.S. next week, while any updated models are likely to be shown off at next month’s IFA event, in Berlin, Germany.