April 24, 2013, 12:12 PM — Sprint warned Wednesday that it will be "slightly delayed" with its full launch of the Samsung Galaxy S 4 on Saturday as planned.
Sprint said in an emailed statement that the problem stems from "unexpected inventory challenges from Samsung."
Samsung's new Galaxy S4
A Samsung representative referred questions about the inventory challenges to its carriers, and wouldn't elaborate on the inventory concern.
AT&T and Verizon Wireless were contacted on whether they face the same inventory problem as Sprint, and a Verizon spokeswoman said it was "not something we can confirm," adding that the GS4 will be available on Verizon on May 30. AT&T did not immediately respond.
Sprint said it will have the Galaxy S4 available as planned on Saturday through its Web site and through phone sales at 1-800-sprint1. The Galaxy S4 will be sold in Sprint stores and other Sprint channels "as inventory becomes available, " the carrier said.
Reviews of the Galaxy S 4 started appearing on Wednesday, including a hands-on by Computerworld blogger JR Raphael.
Samsung is the largest Androidsmartphone maker, producing about half of the Android smartphones on the market. The Android mobile operating system runs on nearly 70% of new smartphones globally, according to research firms IDG and Gartner.
The Galaxy S III was Samsung's top-selling smartphone after it launched last year, and its successor, the GS4, is expected to garner great interest, with a 5-in. Super AMOLED display and resolution of 441 pixels per inch, well above many other popular smartphones. It runs Android version 4.2.2 and has a 1.9 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor in the U.S. model.
Sprint will sell the device for $249.99 with a two-year agreement, and also will offer a $100 credit for switching to Sprint from another carrier. T-Mobile USA is offering it for a total price of $629.99 with no contract, or with a down payment of $149.99 and 24 equal payments of $20 per month. Other carriers are also selling the GS4, but haven't reported inventory delays.