T-Mobile customers have been waiting for months to get their hands on the HTC One S, and while the carrier has yet to officially set a date for the svelte Android 4.0 smartphone, it looks like it’s getting pretty close. After rumors of a late April launch, T-Mobile has sent out press invitations to a launch party on April 18th, precisely one week from today. That would certainly seem to imply that they’re ready to start up a marketing campaign, if nothing else. There’s no verification on the actual launch date, but sometime the following week seems likely.

The last we heard, T-Mobile’s internal systems pegged the phone for release on April 25th, the Wednesday following the launch event. With press info sent out, it seems to be a done deal, so start saving your pennies. There’s been no official word on a price either, but given their current lineup, I’d bet on $249 with a two-year contract. T-Mobile’s still using HSPA+ technology for its network, so the the American version of the phone should be almost identical to its European counterpart, which we reviewed last week.

And by the way T-Mobile users, if you’ve been waiting for a next-generation phone with a subsidy, this is it. Never mind the slim aluminum chassis or the 8 megapixel camera. Never mind the Snapdragon S4 processor, which (at least in some tests) beats the Tegra 3 quad-core with a stick. Never mind the 4.3-inch display. No, the real draw is Ice Cream Sandwich, and the One S will be HTC’s first US phone to get the updated software at launch, along with Sense 4.0. It’s about time.

Also, attendees of the launch party will be┬áserenaded┬áby “Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.“, which is apparently a pop band and not the unborn progeny of a NASCAR driver. You live and learn.

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