LG G2 (Sprint)
Sprint today announced Sprint Spark, its next-generation networking technology that will make use of all three Sprint spectrum bands to boost mobile broadband speeds to 50-60Mbps. "Sprint Spark is a combination of advanced capabilities, like 1x, 2x and 3x carrier aggregation for speed, 8T8R for coverage, MIMO for capacity, TDD for spectral efficiency, together with the most advanced devices offering both tri-band capability and high-definition voice for the best possible customer experience," said Sprint CEO Dan Hesse. Sprint said it will deploy Spark in 100 of the country's largest cities over the course of the next three years, but five markets are launching Spark today: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Tampa and Miami. Sprint expects 100 million Americans will have Sprint Spark or 2.5GHz coverage by the end of 2014. Sprint Spark gives tri-band devices the ability to actively hand-off data sessions between its three spectrum bands. Sprint says this helps boost both speed and capacity. The devices first to include Sprint Spark are the Samsung Galaxy Mega and Galaxy S4 mini, and the LG G2. All three handsets will reach stores November 8. The two Samsung phones will receive a system update shortly after they go on sale that will activate their tri-band services, while the G2 will receive the same update in early 2014. The Mega will cost $199.99 with a contract or $19.59 per month with Sprint One Up; the GS4 Mini will cost $99.99 with a new contract or $16.67 per month with Sprint One Up; and the G2 will cost $199.99 with a new contract or $22.92 per month with Sprint One Up. Sprint also said that the HTC One max will be available "soon." It will cost $249.99 with a new contract or $25.00 per month with Sprint One Up.
The FCC today approved the LG LS-980. The phone supports all three frequency bands Sprint plans to use for LTE in the coming years. It's the first such phone to gain the FCC's approval, although the company Sprint currently uses the 1900 band (band 25) for LTE, but in the coming year will start deploying LTE in the 800 and 2500 bands the company acquired from Nextel and Clearwire, respectively. FCC documents show that the LG LS-980 also supports CDMA, as well as GSM and WCDMA for global roaming. NFC is also included. The FCC approved a potentially related VS-980 phone with Verizon frequency bands the day before.