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. LTE Plus is the new brand name for what used to be Sprint Spark. LTE Plus is the company's tri-band LTE network, which uses 800MHz, 1.9GHz, and 2.5GHz. Sprint is using carrier aggregation to increase capacity and beamforming to improve connections between cell sites and handsets. Sprint says these techniques have helped improve speeds and performance across its network. Sprint has more than a dozen handsets able to take advantage of these technologies, including the Apple iPhone 6s and Samsung Galaxy S6.
Apple Watch Series 3 Supports Carriers' One Number Calling and Messaging
Apple this week announced the Apple Watch Series 3 with an optional cellular radio. The LTE radio makes it possible for the smartwatch to connect to cellular networks on its own, without a nearby iPhone.
Powermat to Upgrade Starbucks Charging Mats to Support iPhone X
Powermat, which has deployed PMA-compliant wireless chargers at thousands of Starbucks locations around the U.S., plans to update its charging pads to support the iPhone X, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone 8 from Apple. At the moment, there are two competing wireless charging standards, PMA and Qi.
Samsung Reveals Price Points for Gear Sport Watch and Icon X Headphones
Samsung today said its Gear Sport smartwatch and Icon X 2018 headphones will be available for pre-order starting October 13, with general retail availability to follow October 27. The Gear Sport, a fitness-focused smartwatch that runs Samsung's Tizen platform, costs $299.99.
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.