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Unlocked U.S. Galaxy S4 retail value set at $579… or $650, official Samsung contest reveals

An official Samsung Galaxy S4 contest in the USA reveals pricing for the unlocked version of the device in the region.
March 19, 2013
samsung galaxy s4 11 aa 600

The U.S. retail price of the Galaxy S4 has been revealed thanks to an official Samsung contest in which winners can walk away with a free Galaxy S4 unit (48 prizes) or a Galaxy S4 and 55-inch Samsung Smart TV combo (4 prizes).

According to the rules of the contest, the approximate retail value of the Galaxy S4 prize is $579. At least that’s what Forbes and Phone Arena found in the rules section:


Samsung has inadvertently revealed the approximate retail value of the S4 to be $579 U.S. in the terms and conditions of a contest to win one of 48 promotional units. Assuming the promotion is for the base 16 GB model, that would place it $70 cheaper than the comparable unlocked iPhone 5, at $649. Contract subsidies and upgrade offers will affect the prices that U.S. consumers actually pay, but apples to apples, so to speak, it would seem that Samsung will be pricing the S4 aggressively.

Phone Arena:

In the fifth section there, the rules state: “First Prizes: 48 First Prizes will be awarded, each consisting of a Samsung Galaxy S® 4 mobile device. Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”): $579.”

Now, the same section shows a different ARV for the handset, $650. Here’s what it reads now:

First Prizes: 48 First Prizes will be awarded, each consisting of a Samsung Galaxy S® 4 mobile device. Approximate Retail Value (“ARV”): $650*.
* The mobile device pricing is approximate and subject to change based on retail pricing set by Sponsor and carrier partners once the mobile device is available for purchase. Any difference between the stated value and actual value once the mobile device becomes available at retail will not be awarded.

Has Samsung modified the ARV of the Galaxy S4 since officially kicking off the competition? And if so, why did the company bump up the ARV?

What’s clear is that there aren’t any official pricing details for the U.S. Galaxy S4 versions yet, even though at least six carriers will have the handset in stores. Again, we’ll quote the rules, the last paragraph in section 11 to be precise:

These Official Rules suggest an approximate retail value of the Galaxy S 4. No specific pricing has been determined for this device, yet, and the device is not yet offered for sale in the United States. Pricing for the Galaxy S 4 will be determined by Sponsor’s carrier partners and announced some time in Quarter 2 of 2013.

The contest doesn’t specify what kind of Galaxy S4 model winners will get when it comes to capacity, although it will most likely be the 16GB version. Pricing for the same model has been already discovered in Europe as follows: €599-€699 (Italy) €649 (Germany) and £529.98 (UK). These pricing models are pretty much in line with what we’d expect the 16GB Galaxy S4 to cost in the USA, but we’ll still have to wait for local carriers to properly announce the device.

Finally, we’ll note that the “Cut to the Front of the Line” Samsung contest takes place during March 14 – April 22, but it’s only available to U.S. residents. In case you want to try your hand at winning the handset, check out our own Galaxy S4 giveaway, which is available to international readers as well.