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Android Central Forums member snags HTC Merge early in Alltel retail store

The HTC Merge is still officially only available for pre-order on Alltel. But Android Central Forums member jtowndawg scoped out his local store in Georgia and, sure enough, was able to take one home already. And even better, he's given us a nice little photo gallery of his bounty. And for that, he'll be rewarded.

The HTC Merge, as you undoubtedly remember from our exclusive hands-on way back last fall, and in more recent sit-downs, is a 3.8-inch Android 2.2 phone with an excellent sliding keyboard and 5MP camera that all but disappeared for a few months. And now it's on Alltel, and it's also headed to Cellular South. What we don't know is if it's ever going to see release on Verizon, as it was initially intended. There remain hints to that fact -- some new, some old -- but nothing official.

But if you're on Alltel and are dying for the Merge, it'd behoove you to swing by your local store. Tell 'em Android Central sent ya. And check out more pics of jtowdawg's new Merge in the forums. [HTC Merge in Alltel stores now, HTC Merge forums]

  • OMG enough about the Merge already! It's old news. Who cares?!
  • I think what it stems from is that there was/is a group of phone enthusiasts (myself included) who perhaps were holding off coming to Android from say WinMo or Blackberry or upgrading their black Android slabs and the only thing holding them back is that they were waiting for a really good physical keyboard on VZW. The fact that this was from HTC as well made it (to some) a seemingly perfect storm of phone awesomeness. Great manufacturer - Android - great keyboard - on the VZW where one can make calls upon it and whatnot. Win Win Win Win All I know is I'm glad I didn't wait for it or I'd put those Thunderbolt fans to shame with my nerd rage.
  • This...I'm still a Merge holdout...nothing else fits my needs at the moment on Verizon (OG Droid user here) and I dunno if I want to hold out to hear more about Droid 3 (the keyboard seems only marginally improved over Droid 2...barely) so this phone is perfect. If it comes out in the next few weeks, I'll snag one.
  • I'd say people who want a phone that works well and doesn't have to be new and exciting (parents for example) would be interested in this phone.
  • Parents? Oh, please, Stop. Most young people's phone knowledge is exhausted once they send their first text message.
  • So don't read the article? I dunno how else to fix your problem. I had the same thoughts about the Bolt articles but I didn't read them. And guess what, it was really easy! The phone just came out on a regional carrier so it's news to those people. Similarly for people interested in the Merge. Sure the hardware isn't elite and neither is it 4g. But it's a qwerty slider and considering how rare they are these days, it's exciting to those of us.
  • It has been announced on alltel already. As far as Tbolt articles, that was since Jan, released March. They have posted about this Merge since last Sept. It's old news.
  • damn was hoping for the Samsung Charge from Big Red
  • I really wanted this phone on Verizon. I'm happy with my TB, but I'm not sure if I'd sell it if this phone came along eventually.
  • Hate to break it to everyone, but the Merge isnt coming to Verizon. So dont hold out for it. I happen to know this from experience. Ive had the phone in my hand. Verizon's security department called me personally and also told me this.