News tagged: Sprint Telecom
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Internal sources suggest that Sprint has approached Dish Network over a deal that would allow Dish to offer wireless service over Sprint's network, in exchange for Sprint getting access to Dish spectrum. According to a report by Bloomberg
, Sprint approached Dish about a deal, though Dish has acknowledged in recent weeks they've been talking with pretty much everyone
(including Google) about a wireless partnership. From the report:
Under the potential arrangement, discussed in recent months, Sprint would get access to Dishs mobile airwaves, which arent currently being used, the people said. The companies could then share revenue from customers who sign up for a Dish wireless service, or Dish may pay Sprint a fee to use the network, according to one of the people, who asked not to be named because they arent authorized to speak publicly.
To cement such a deal the two companies would first need to settle an increasingly ugly dispute over the regulation governing Dish's airwaves. Sprint has been pushing the FCC to require power limits on the lower end of Dish's AWS-4 spectrum, something Dish has been in very vocal opposition to. Dish and Sprint last week struck a deal to sell Sprint phones at Dish-owned Blockbuster stores
Sprint is poised to turn on service in nine new markets, while many people wait for the company to seriously deploy LTE in some larger cities. According to a Sprint press release
, Sprint has started working on LTE upgrades in markets like Minneapolis and Oakland, with a full service launch expected sometime before January. Sprint is turning markets on almost as soon as they're even remotely deployed, resulting in many users with LTE devices seeing network connectivity before commercial launch.
While the pre-launch availability is nice, Sprint has recently resorted to announcing a lot of upcoming LTE markets, as opposed to actually available LTE markets. The carrier realizes that they're getting a lot of new iPhone users who may find themselves disappointed with LTE coverage compared to Verizon (417 markets) and AT&T (80 markets).
Anonymous sources tell Bloomberg News
that Sprint has no plans (yet) to fully acquire Clearwire after Sprint itself was recently acquired by Japanese carrier SoftBank. Sprint currently owns a 49% stake in Clearwire and faces no pressure for full ownership given they've already paid Clearwire $900 million to lease needed spectrum.
Sprint today announced that the company is introducing new data pricing for the company's 3G (EVDO) and 4G (Mobile WiMax) customers that access these networks using laptops. Fresh on the heels of eliminating unlimited data options for devices other than smartphones
, a Sprint press release
notes that customers can now pay $50 for 6 gigabytes of data a month (previously $60 for 5GB) or $80 for 12 gigabytes of data a month (previously $90 for 10 GB).
Since their botched Nextel acquisition resulted in a huge exodus of annoyed customers, Sprint has been trying to do things a little differently from AT&T and Verizon, in the hopes that being a little more consumer friendly would net them customers. Those efforts have involved retaining unlimited smartphone data plans, while AT&T and Verizon both shifted to the low cap and high per byte overage model. story continues..
Like Sprint's planned migration to LTE, it's not a particularly well-kept secret that the company will finally get the iPhone 5 this month -- or that the company plans to continue offering unlimited data plans for the device in the hopes of giving AT&T and Verizon a little more competition. Despite unlimited data and a number of ever-dwindling pro-consumer policies
, Sprint hasn't quite seen the kind of subscriber growth they'd like -- and blames most of that on the lack of the iPhone.
According to the Wall Street Journal
, the Communications Workers of America has started attacking Sprint for its opposition to the AT&T T-Mobile merger. The CWA has launched a new website dubbed Eye On Sprint
, which attacks Sprint for opposing the deal "for its own self-interest, not the public interest." Given the deal would give Sprint a 17% market share, Sprint's motivations are fairly obvious here, and it's not clear who thought Sprint was fighting the deal out of altruism.
Following belatedly on the heels of Verizon
, Sprint will finally be raising their $200 ETF to $350. According to SprintFeed
, this change will take place September 9 and will only impact "advanced devices" such as smartphones, tablets, netbooks and notebooks. Sprint held out on this shift for a little while: Verizon doubled their ETF for such devices from $175 to $350 in November of 2009, while AT&T started charging a $325 ETF in the middle of last year
. Sprint's change of course will only apply to new contracts or renewals signed after September 9.
According to new data from Validas
, Sprint customers consume the most data, eating an average of 778 MB per month and a median of 371 MB a month. That's not particularly surprising, given that Sprint (for now
) has made unlimited use the center of an ad campaign intended to differentiate the company.
Bloomberg story continues..
has obtained a letter from billionaire LightSquared backer Philip Falcone to Harbinger Capital Partners confirming the fact that LightSquared has struck a fifteen-year deal with Sprint to share network expansion costs and equipment, and to provide high-speed wireless service to the phone company. We first reported that this deal was being negotiated back in March
Yesterday we exclusively reported
that Lightsquared would be ditching Nokia for their LTE network build, instead piggybacking on Sprint's base station overhaul being conducted by Alcatel-Lucent, Ericcson and Samsung. Speaking at the Deutsche Bank Media and Telecom Conference today (audio here
), Sprint CEO Dan Hesse reiterated Sprint's dedication to Clearwire and WiMax, despite numerous signs the company is ready to go the LTE route, alone if necessary.
Harbinger Capital Partners' Lightsquared network was originally intended to shake up the competitive landscape by offering new players wholesale access to an entirely new LTE network. Last July it was announced that Nokia won the $7 billion contract to build the LTE network
, though a source with knowledge of Lightsquared's plans tells Broadband Reports that things have changed significantly since then, and that not only is Nokia possibly out of favor as the primary builder -- but that Lightsquared and Sprint are working in conjunction on future LTE plans, with Sprint's recently-announced base station retrofit now the cornerstone of Lightsquared's nationwide LTE ambitions.
Sprint today released their fourth quarter and 2010 earnings
, which indicate the company posted a net addition of 58,000 postpaid subscribers in the quarter. That's obviously not much when compared to the massive additions of AT&T and Verizon, but it's notable because it's the first time Sprint has reported a subscriber gain
whatsoever since the second quarter of 2007. "I'm not declaring mission accomplished yet, far from it," Sprint CEO Dan Hesse told investors on a conference call (probably good to note, since many analysts predict Sprint will lose subs again this quarter and they posted a $929 million loss). On the call Hesse also stated that the company would have some major news on their 4G migration path later this year, hinting at either Sprint's possible migration to LTE
, Clearwire's new role as a purely wholesale operator
, or both.
It has been clear for several months now that Sprint and Clearwire executives aren't exactly getting along, something that makes the investment community nervous. Sprint has made several comments about Clearwire business practices, refused to take part in a recent debt offering, and reduced their role on Clearwire's board. story continues..
Sprint CEO Dan Hesse this week sat down to talk with the Wall Street Journal crew (see video here
), and discussed both WiMax and unlimited wireless data plans. "It was clearly less than we thought it would be," stated Hesse of the head start WiMax had in the marketplace, which has quickly become less important with Verizon's LTE launch last weekend. Hesse continues to insist that Sprint will continue to stick to unlimited service, despite the ramp up in low cap/high overage pricing from companies like AT&T, Verizon and AT&T. Hesse also notes he likes Consumer Reports, unlike AT&T
. Undiscussed are the recent vague hints (which support rumors we've heard) that Sprint will ultimately become an LTE carrier and begin their LTE build next year as a quiet portion of a major network overhaul
announced this week.
have announced that they've launched Mobile WiMax service in the Sacramento, California market. According to Clearwire, there's about 1.2 million people covered by this launch, and according to Sprint -- this makes 62 markets now up and running with on their "technically not 4G" network
. Clearwire's California ambitions are about to get significantly larger with Los Angeles and San Francisco launches in December. Los Angeles is supposed to go live on December 1, with The Bay Area going live "a few weeks later," according to the companies. The launches arrive as Clearwire is starting to make cuts
including a 15% workforce cut due to growing cash concerns.
Here in the United States, wireless carrier Sprint charges users an extra $10 "because we can" fee on top
of existing charges to access Sprint's faster Mobile WiMax network. In other words, Mobile WiMax users simply pay $10 more than their EVDO/CDMA counterparts for no discernible reason, and it's a fee that Sprint says might be getting higher
today announced that the companies have launched the faster 4G wireless broadband service in both the Pittsburgh and the Minneapolis/St. Paul markets. According to Sprint, their 4G service is now available in 55 cities, and the companies still have some major market launched planned before the end of the year, including New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, Miami, Cincinnati, and Cleveland. Sprint this week posted new videos
discussing their upcoming launch in New York (where service is already live in several areas). Apparently (see similar AT&T video
), talking to your network guys on a NYC rooftop means you're super serious
about wireless broadband.
Sprint today announced
that they've expanded their 4G/Mobile WiMax network to include Richmond, Virginia, Salt Lake City, Utah and St. Louis, Missouri.
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