Tri-Band LTE Phones Coming To Sprint In Late 2013
Sprint is preparing to launch new phones in the second half of 2013 that support LTE technology in all of the company's major frequency bands, according to Sprint Director of Device Product Marketing Trevor A. Van Norman. The company had previously hinted at dual-band phones, but now plans to skip straight to tri-band, to fully support all of the company's planned LTE deployments. In addition to Sprint's current LTE band near 1900 MHz (band 25), the phones will also support LTE near 800 MHz and 2,500 MHz. The 800 band (also known as ESMR, BC10, and band 27) hosts iDEN - which is being phased out - and CDMA. Sprint has previously announced plans to deploy LTE technology in that band in early 2014. Sprint will also keep CDMA in part of the 8900 band and/or in certain regions. The 2,500 MHz band (also known as band 41) hosts both WiMAX and LTE technologies, and is owned by Clear, which Sprint is trying to acquire control of. Regardless of the outcome of that transaction, Sprint will use the Clear LTE network to augment its LTE coverage and capacity.
FCC Relaxes Rules Governing 800 MHz Spectrum
The FCC this week made it easier for carriers to add LTE to their 800 MHz spectrum holdings. Rules concerning the 800 MHz band (CDMA Band Class 0, LTE Band 5) have been in place since 1981 and limit how much power carriers can use to transmit wireless signals across those airwaves.
Sprint Retires 'Spark' and Launches 'LTE Plus'
Sprint is rebranding its LTE 4G network in an effort to call attention to the technology involved in making the network tick. Sprint LTE Plus replaces the Sprint Spark name for the company's tri-band LTE network, which uses 800MHz, 1.9GHz, and 2.5GHz.
Sprint Says Network Vision Is Basically Done
Sprint recently indicated that its years-long Network Vision project is coming to a close. Sprint's 1900MHz LTE network covers 260 million POPs, according to Sprint CFO Joe Euteneuer, who made the comments at a Bank of America investor conference this week.
Sprint Doubles LTE Plus Footprint
Sprint today said it has doubled the availability of its LTE Plus coverage from 77 markets in November to more than 150 markets today. Some of the new markets include Boulder, Colo., West Palm Beach, Fla., Cleveland, Ohio, and Syracuse, N.Y.