Thursday, March 29, 2012

Sprint Won't Be Releasing New WiMAX Devices

Sprint has changed its stance on WiMax devices and no longer plans to bring new WiMax gear to the market, said Bob Azzi, Sprint's senior vice president of networks. Earlier this year, Sprint said that it would offer both CDMA/WiMax and CDMA/LTE devices through 2012, and that it would stop selling WiMax devices by the end of the year. Azzi's comments reflect a change in the company's position. 

Azzi noted that the company will use the G-Block of its 1900MHz spectrum to launch LTE by the middle of the year. "We are wrapping up final field integration tests," Azzi said. "The technology works and delivers more benefits than we expected." Sprint will have 15 LTE devices available by the end of the year, including smartphones, tablets, and mobile hotspots. The company also plans to refarm portions of its 800MHz spectrum for use with LTE. It is currently transitioning its iDEN customers to its CDMA network, and will eventually use that freed-up spectrum for LTE. 

Considering that Sprint is planning to roll out LTE service by mid-2012 and will be releasing around 15 LTE-capable devices by the end of the year, it makes sense that the carrier would decide to cease launching new WiMAX products. Sprint has yet to say when it'll be releasing its new LTE devices like the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and LG Viper, saying only that availability information will be revealed closer to launch, but a recent rumor claimed that the Galaxy Nexus could be here as soon as the middle of April. How many of you are considering checking out one of Sprint's LTE devices once they finally hit?

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