Today Sprint announced what everyone has been waiting for. They will be phasing out their 4G WiMax in favor of a more standardized LTE network. Although they’re a step or two behind Verizon and AT&T at this point, Sprint plans to launch LTE in the 800Mhz and 1900Mhz bands by the middle of 2012, and completing the network by 2013. Pending FCC approval, the 1600Mhz frequency is also planned in their deal with LightSquared.
CMDA/LTE devices will also launch in 2012 around the same time the network is switched on, and Sprint is expecting to launch 15 devices including phones, tablets and data cards. WiMax devices will continue to be sold through 2012, but there’s no clear word on how long the WiMax network will remain live. However Sprint’s 3G network is still part of their long term strategy and not going anywhere anytime soon.
Read Sprint’s press release here. Or see more coverage from This Is My Next here and here.