updated 10:15 pm EST, Mon January 24, 2011
Verizon launch still questionable
Despite a number of early rumors tying HTC's Merge handset to Verizon, the device has resurfaced with Alltel branding. Sources have told Droid-Life the smartphone is in the late stages of testing on Alltel's network, with a launch expected in the next month if the trials are completed successfully.
Interestingly enough, the Merge has been the subject of several leaks but the rumored late-2010 Verizon launch never came to fruition. Rumors suggested the handset may have been delayed while the company reconfigured the hardware for Verizon's LTE network, but it was not included in the carrier's initial 4G promotions.
Images of the Merge show a QWERTY slider, while reports point to a second-generation Snapdragon CPU and 3.7-inch touchscreen as likely features. Sources have disagreed on the display resolution, which is said to be 800x480 or higher.
It is unclear if the Verizon launch has been completely dropped or merely delayed. Details of the Alltel launch, such as pricing and availability dates, have yet to emerge.