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Did Pantech just announce a $50 Galaxy S III? Meet AT&T's Discover

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Pantech Discover for AT&T
Pantech Discover for AT&T

AT&T has just announced the Pantech Discover, a new budget-priced Android smartphone that has more than one similarity to Samsung Galaxy S III. Matching the Galaxy S III's display with a 4.8-inch, 720p screen, the Discover also has a 12.6-megapixel camera with 1080p video support, built-in NFC, and the obligatory support for AT&T's 4G LTE network. It is also powered by a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and has a 2,100mAh battery.

The Discover features Pantech's custom user interface on top of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and it has the company's Easy Experience settings for first-time smartphone buyers and AT&T's DriveMode app, which is said to help discourage drivers from texting while driving. Unfortunately, all of those features likely mean that the Discover won't get be getting timely updates to the latest versions of Android as they are released.

At $49.99, it undercuts the Galaxy S III while matching many of its specs

But the most interesting part of the Discover announcement might be the phone's price: at $49.99 on-contract, it significantly undercuts the Galaxy S III and other smartphones with similar spec sheets. We can't really say whether or not the Discover will actual give the Galaxy S III a run for its money until we get our hands on it — and given our experience with Pantech phones in the past, we don't really expect it to — but you'll be able to find it in AT&T stores starting on January 11th.