dslreports logo
site
spacer

spacer
 
   
spc
story category
Some Clearwire WiMax Sites Shuttered as iDen Dies
Sprint Plows Through Major Network Overhaul
by Karl Bode 08:32AM Wednesday Aug 01 2012
A Sprint continues with their multi-billion LTE deployment and base station retrofit, they're also slowly shuttering the company's push-to-talk iDen network. In the process however, they're apparently taking some of Clearwire's Mobile WiMax network offline as well. Light Reading directs our attention to the fact that Sprint has already decommissioned 9,600 iDEN cell sites this year, and because some Clearwire WiMax gear is housed alongside it -- WiMax hardware as well. "Clearwire has wholesale customers offering service on its WiMax network that were likely counting on another couple of years left in the network -- or at least to be supported until Clearwire's own (LTE) network is up and running mid-next year," notes the website. Neither the website or Sprint have provided just how many WiMax cell sites will be sacrificed to the upgrade gods.

view:
topics flat nest 
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

1 recommendation

How much is 'some'?

Lightreading gives no indication how many sites. Is it 10 sites or hundreds? Is it 0.1% of WiMAX sites or 20%? It might be negligible. Is also possible that Clear could move the WiMAX equipment to another nearby Sprint site.

How about this crazy idea.. Apple buys Sprint/Clear and rapidly funds the transition...

»www.kansascity.com/2012/07/31/37···ple.html

I'd rather Google buy Sprint though. If they are going to be in the ISP biz, they may as well be a wireless carrier. If one buys Sprint, the other will probably buy Tmob.
tom thomas

join:2010-11-04

Re: How much is 'some'?

perhaps it ends up apple buys sprint, google buys Verizon, microsoft buys at&t, samsung buys t-mobile, etc.

they slowly get out of the retail phone business and become network backbones for the companies devices. could actually be pretty interesting, especially if google or apple decides to provide free internet to all future devices. on the other hand there could end up being some serious net neutrality issues and the question of how devices from smaller vendors get online.
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

Re: How much is 'some'?

That would have sounded nuts a few years ago but in 10 years, it could happen. Apple might become the 'premium' carrier, Google might become the 'data mining for low rates' carrier, Microsoft might become the 'enterprise' carrier and Samsung or other is the 'catchall'.

And something that would not be thinkable 10 years ago... Microsoft would likely be the weakest player and a New Big 3 eventually absorbs them with no more Microsoft brand 5 years after that. Ah, fun to speculate about the future.

NWOhio2

@buckeyecom.net
Sprint's got motive to why they're doing their new MVNO system; and its most likely to get out of the retail business. Why else would you invite EVERYONE onto your network to become an MVNO??? I've been saying all along it's in the best interest in the company. Combine Clear back into Sprint- spin off ALL of their retail operations, and then Sprint can go back to doing what they do best- managing a wholesale network. By not doing so- they're going to be up for pissing off more customers by shutting down Wimax sites that customers use- a good way to get sued without notice. and to save $$$ in the end.
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

Re: How much is 'some'?

Not sure if you heading this direction but if Apple and Google wanted to get into this biz, I doubt they'd become MVNOs. They'll probably want to own as much of the service as they can. Especially Apple - they focus on owning as much of the supply chain as possible (and control end user experience).
DarnellP

join:2004-10-12
Las Vegas, NV
Making no sense....as usual.

said by NWOhio2 :

Sprint's got motive to why they're doing their new MVNO system; and its most likely to get out of the retail business. Why else would you invite EVERYONE onto your network to become an MVNO??? I've been saying all along it's in the best interest in the company. Combine Clear back into Sprint- spin off ALL of their retail operations, and then Sprint can go back to doing what they do best- managing a wholesale network. By not doing so- they're going to be up for pissing off more customers by shutting down Wimax sites that customers use- a good way to get sued without notice. and to save $$$ in the end.


dib22

join:2002-01-27
Kansas City, MO
I second google buying it. Imagine sprint run by the engineers instead of the marketing department
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

Re: How much is 'some'?

said by dib22:

I second google buying it. Imagine sprint run by the engineers instead of the marketing department

And Google already has ties into Sprint with Google Voice and other services. Sprint is based in KC, Google Fiber picks KC. Hmmm....

jester121
Premium
join:2003-08-09
Lake Zurich, IL
Sprint =
- shitty customer service
- sketchy network
- cheap

Google =
-no customer service (ever try to obtain support for one of their products?)
- products perpetually in beta
- free, or nearly so

Match made in heaven!

scott2020

join:2008-07-20
MO

Re: How much is 'some'?

You forgot "Google - discontinuing services whenever they feel like it". I suppose that can go with the beta piece.
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

1 edit
Sprint fixed customer support a couple years ago. They rank high now for support (for carriers anyway).

Google doesn't have a track record of customer support, especially over phone, but they do have one setup for Google Fiber and I've called it a couple times already. It seemed to be a well organized call center.

But yeah, Google does kind of lean as perpetual beta services - though my Windows PC has more issues than Android phone/tablet. Sprint simply needs funding to fill in its coverage gaps. They have the right plan, including 800Mhz eventually.
georgeglass5

join:2010-06-07
New York, NY

Ridiculous

considering Virgin Mobile 4g is on Wimax, what of those people that pay upward of $300 for their device to use said 4g

FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Re: Ridiculous

said by georgeglass5:

considering Virgin Mobile 4g is on Wimax, what of those people that pay upward of $300 for their device to use said 4g

WiMAX is dead anyway. This s just helping along the transition.
--
»www.mittromney.com/s/repeal-and-···bamacare
»www.mittromney.com/issues/health-care
Cerlyn
Premium
join:2009-07-30

Re: Ridiculous

Clearband (OMGFast) uses WiMax, so it is not quite dead yet.

They also may be using different WiMax sites than Clearwire, as they claim to have coverage in areas around me where Clearwire does not.
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY

Re: Ridiculous

They use MVDDS for downlink. They only use Wimax air interface for uplink and they have to in the 5GHZ region. For fixed broadband wimax can be better because how the frequency selection is done (unpaired spectrum). Since this is upload only, Wimax makes sense.

For all intensive purposes the US carriers are going to LTE. Clearwire has boucoup spectrum, which will probably be repurposed for uplink services and backhaul. Maybe they use LTE better once the microcells come down in price because their higher frequency will make it an issue as those have come to see.

jbgroup1
Non Conformist
Premium
join:2000-05-04
Dayton, MD
Reviews:
·T-Mobile US

Re: Ridiculous

said by elefante72:

...For all intensive purposes...

Sorry to be a grammar nazi but after seeing this several times today on various sites the I just have to say that the correct wording is "for all intents and purposes"
--
...as an individual, I have a right to [do] what I think, what I feel, and I think we all have a right to our own destiny as individuals. And I think I have a right to choose mine and everybody else has a right to choose theirs.
»jonestown.sdsu.edu

NWOhio2

@buckeyecom.net
many other ISPs use it as well. It's far from dead. Karl just doesn't comment on those smaller ISPs who elect to use it.
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY
Well you can pay $650 for an iphone to use 3G (if you can get it), so I guess it's not too bad.
georgeglass5

join:2010-06-07
New York, NY

Umm Ok

Nice but, I think I made my point. Enough said.

digiblur
Premium
join:2002-06-03
Louisiana

Not really a big deal...

It's going to be fixed. These are the only sites where the panels are co-lo'd on Nextel's racks on the tower. Probably not many. If Clear is on a tower where Nextel is, big deal, they have another rack on the tower and have their own separate equipment on the ground. The Nextel equipment will be removed and go on their merry way. The others where the only location on the tower was on the nextel rack, they will removed the nextel panels and put the clear back. It will require some work from clear. Which is probably why the mentioned it as it will have some costs involved.

And Wimax has more sites closer together than Sprint due to the fact that the tower spacing for 1900mhz doesn't work for Clear's 2500mhz propagation. The sites are still needed as some might be spectrum protection sites and other things so I doubt they will go away. In some rare cases they may have to relocate the equipment to another nearby tower, Clear is going to upgrade the sites to LTE which some rumored it was a software upgrade.
--

SouthWest Louisiana PC Users Group »www.swlapcug.com
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

Re: Not really a big deal...

Seems highly likely they would simply move the WiMAX equipment to the nearest Sprint site.

digiblur
Premium
join:2002-06-03
Louisiana

Re: Not really a big deal...

said by xenophon:

Seems highly likely they would simply move the WiMAX equipment to the nearest Sprint site.

Probably not as they would have done that in the first place. There's a reason in the RF design why it was on the tower.
--

SouthWest Louisiana PC Users Group »www.swlapcug.com
xenophon

join:2007-09-17

Re: Not really a big deal...

Maybe but it's likely they'd put the spare WiMAX _somewhere_ so if one area is impacted by coverage, another area may gain. The net difference may not end up being anything.

NWOhio2

@buckeyecom.net
very true. especially since Clear built the network out- not Sprint.

Josh1581

@transedge.com

I don't mind...

...as long as they give me an early upgrade from my Evo Shift to a new LTE phone.

Mr Anon

@k12.il.us

DVNO, I mean MVNO

Hee hee, I think of that song just about every time I think of MVNO

Anyway is this the same Wimax that heir MVNO's are now using?

A bigger story (one I've not seen covered here) is that sprints network as a whole is imploding. I know two people who use their phones for work that have dropped them. One filing an FCC complaint and able to gracefully dissolve the contract. My aunt has a sponsered phone which runs on the sprint network and is now having the same issues, calls not going through, lost or severely late texts, droops etc etc.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Good.

Sprint needs to move forward. Right now they have the most towers and the least coverage of any major carrier.