After months of leaks and rumors, Samsung has officially announced the ATIV Odyssey (pronounced “ah-TEVE”) during CES, a mid-range Window Phone 8 device headed to Verizon. The device was originally name-dropped by Steve Ballmer at the Windows Phone 8 launch event in San Francisco and expected to launch on the Big Red network in December. Unfortunately, December came and went without a word from Samsung.

The ATIV Odyssey is actually the first Samsung Windows Phone 8 device to launch in the US, despite the original ATIV S announcement way back at the end of August. The ATIV S recently became available on a limited number of mobile operators around the world, but it has yet make its way stateside. This is unfortunate, since I originally called the device “compelling” and questioned if it was the best Windows Phone for media enthusiasts. The ATIV S even took the number two spot in our Windows Phone 8 poll last fall, with 20% of respondents saying that they were hoping to pick one up.

While it is not quite as nice as the ATIV S, the ATIV Odyssey looks pretty good for a mid-range phone. It packs a 4-inch Super AMOLED display running at a resolution of 800 x 480, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, a 5MP camera with 1080p video, a 1.2MP front-facing camera, a 2,100mAh battery, and 4G LTE. 8GB of storage comes standard, but you can also insert a microSD card for up to an additional 64GB of space. Finally, it includes a number of Samsung-exclusive apps like Photo Editor, Mini Diary, and Now.

The Samsung ATIV Odyssey will be available on Verizon in the “coming weeks” for an as-yet-unspecified price.

[Verizon Wireless News Center via Windows Phone Blog]

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