The long-rumored HTC Puccini finally has an official name and launch date: AT&T's first LTE tablet will be known as the HTC Jetstream and will be landing in stores on September 4. But while most manufacturers are struggling to find the sweet spot in tablet pricing and generate the level of interest that the iPad has, HTC and AT&T have gone ahead a slapped a $700 sticker plus a two-year contract to their latest device.
By comparison, a 3G enabled iPad 2 with the same 16GB of internal storage sells for $630. Sure, that extra $70 gets you LTE connectivity, but it also ties you to a monthly fee of $35 for the next 24 months -- another $840 over time. That may be too much to swallow for many users, especially with cheaper Android tablets starting to hit the market.
In terms of hardware the Jetstream features a 10.1-inch WXGA HD touch screen display, Qualcomm's dual-core 1.5GHz processor, an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera with dual-LED flash and a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera. The tablet runs on Android 3.1 Honeycomb with HTC's Sense skin on top and can be used with the included HTC Scribe digital pen. The stylus is free for a limited time, mind you, so you better act fast! (it was an $80 add-on for the HTC Flyer).
The HTC Jetstream is a pretty powerful tablet sentenced to death from day one by a pretty ridiculous price tag. It seems like HTC learned absolutely nothing from the Xoom's failure earlier this year. Even if 4G connectivity is a must, Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 also has an LTE model on Verizon priced at a more reasonable $529 on contract.