Verizon Wireless has announced the budget friendly Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere 2. Starting at $129, the affordable Stratosphere 2 comes equipped with 4G LTE, a 1.2Ghz processor, and runs Android 4.0 out of the box.

The Stratosphere 2 shows just how far budget Android devices have come. Beyond the 4G radio and the full QWERTY slider, the Stratosphere 2 also features a 4-inch Super AMOLED display, as well as NFC support. The Stratosphere 2 is part of the Galaxy series, so you can expect to see exclusive features such as the file transfer service S Beam, popularized by the Galaxy S3. Additionally, the Stratosphere 2 is global ready, granting network access from over 200 countries across the globe and offers built-in VPN connectivity, Microsoft Exchange Active Sync and AES 256-bit encryption support.

The Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere 2 is a well equipped phone for a relatively low price. If you’re the type of person who needs a physical keyboard, the Stratosphere 2 is a solid choice for Verizon customers. Its only competition is the Droid 4, which features almost identical specifications. Unlike Motorola, Samsung has a somewhat decent track record for keeping their devices updated with the latest version of Android, so the Stratosphere 2 may have a better chance of receiving Jelly Bean than the Droid 4.

Although the actual release date is currently unknown, Verizon has announced that the Stratosphere 2 will be available both in store, and online, in the coming weeks. The phone will sell for $129 with a two-year agreement, after a $50 mail-in rebate.

Nicholas Moore
Nicholas Moore is a freelance writer obsessed with the Android platform. When not covering the news Nick spends his time studying Information Technology.