Is Sprint About To Release 4G To The Bay Area?

It's no secret that Sprint has had the San Francisco Bay Area on its 4G release roadmap for a while, with a planned release time frame of sometime this year. It's always been mind-boggling to me that the heart of the Silicon Valley, where Google itself lives, along with thousands of other tech companies, was not priority #1 for Sprint.

Is it all about to change? I was getting off Caltrain at Mountain View this morning, playing with the EVO, as usual, when I suddenly noticed the 4G widget somehow switched itself on. I knew we had no 4G around the Bay Area, so I never kept it on. However, there it was.

This fact by itself wouldn't have been that exciting had I also not observed the 4G symbol which replaced the 3G one in the notification bar.

Holy crap... can it be?..

I quickly fired up the http://speedtest.net site in Dolphin HD, which supports Flash Light, and ran a quick test. 2.66Mbps down... "The site did load unusually fast," I thought.

 Is Sprint About To Release 4G To The Bay Area? Is Sprint About To Release 4G To The Bay Area?

4G is here? 4G is here!

At that point, the icon disappeared and switched back to 3G. Then it re-appeared again and kept jumping in and out every couple of minutes. Something was still unstable, or my signal was weak at that location but the fact remained - 4G was floating in the air.

By the time I arrived at the Mountain View office, the only thing left was 3G. However, about 8 hours later, on my way back to San Francisco, I saw the 4G symbol again. It wasn't just a brief test. Not as far as I could tell.

I found a single tweet on Twitter supporting my findings, and not much else. I guess nobody is really checking for 4G without an official announcement:


Now I need your help in testing this theory out. If you are in the Bay Area, turn your 4G on and report back. Alternatively, if you know anything more official, definitely drop us a line or leave a comment.

Who is excited!?

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Mark

    No 4G in San Bruno =(

  • Melvin

    Not in Daly City. Will check Hayward later today.

    • Tenny

      I've posted this several times now... Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Mountain View, and Palo Alto are known for having 4g. They've actually had 4g for months now (See: http://developer.clear.com/innovation )

      With that being said, it is starting to expand I've noticed. I live in Hayward, and I have found 4g at Southland Mall, all across Hesparian Ave & Chabot College (even down near my house at Industrial Ave). I've also noticed some 4g at Union landing. So when I drive, I just leave 4g on and watch (with a car charger attached to the device!).

  • Kuba

    Not in Lafayette/Walnut Creek

  • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

    I have a feeling it's being tested somewhere closer to the Silicon Valley.

    Anybody from Santa Clara, Mountain View, and other neighboring cities can confirm?

  • Tony

    Active on University Ave in Palo Alto. Just ran a speedtest.net and got 2.58Mb/s down, 0.44 up.

    Edit: tried another server (Utah), was able to get 3.04/0.60.

  • Dixies

    Ive turned mine on, but haven't got a signal yet. Ill follow up later if i get anything.

    (Santa clara/Cupertino area)

  • Melvin

    I have heard (saw a posting on Facebook from a Clear employee who is a friend of a friend) that the network is being tested by Clear in University Ave as stated above, as well as in Mt View. I'm never there, so I can't confirm.

    I can link to the post I'd there are any doubts.

  • chris

    nothing in Santa Clara off De La Cruz blvd, were right behind the airport, and i live across the street from rivermark plaza and haven't picked anything up.

  • Melvin

    In Hayward at the corner of West A St and Hesperian, I keep getting a notification that 4g is available, but I can't connect.

  • catpunt

    Nothing in SF Financial District yet

  • Dixies

    There is indeed some 4G in Palo Alto. I can connect, it is patchy as i rarely get even 1 bar of 4G but on speed tests it was consistently above 2Mbps and once was 3.2Mbps. Upload times were only about 2-400kbps. Sprint tv looks great on it though!

  • Ed Caggiani

    I was at the HTC party in San Francisco last night and talked with a Sprint guy who was there. He told me 4g was being tested in Palo Alto, and I can confirm that I get a signal from Palo Alto to Mountain View while driving down 101.

    Furthermore, I asked him where in the Bay Area 4g would roll out. He said it would cover from San Francisco all the way down to Santa Cruz! That makes me happy as I live in San Jose and work in Redwood City.

    When I asked when, he said October :-)

    This is all coming from one Sprint guy at a party, so take it as you will. I tend to think there is merit in what her told me since he was right about the testing in Palo Alto.

  • dakota

    I saw a technician installing a tower on top of my local church in San Jose near Santana Row. I haven't attempted to connect but will try this week and report back.

  • Chris

    There is definitely 4G in North San Jose by Montague Expressway and River Oaks. Download speed is 3.17 MB/S through speedtest.net

  • Paul Dube

    Nothing here in the Tri-Valley area (Dublin, Pleasanton, San Ramon). The day I first got my Evo I had some 4G action in Hayward near Cal State. The only other time I experieced 4G goodness was when I was in L.A.

  • Richard Grijalva

    The Palo Alto testing is less Clear testing 4G in Palo Alto and more providing 4G basically to important Silicon Valley development campuses to test 4G prototypes on.

  • Webvan

    About to move back to the SV so that's exciting, but isn't 4G already available via Verizon ?

  • Webvan

    Thanks, that's what happens when you're looking at this from Europe ;-) First half of 2011 for LTE handsets then...so it seems I'll be getting an EVO 4G when I arrive in August!

  • webvan

    The EVO 4G seems to be the way to go when I get to Palo Alto in August. Is there a trick to use it as a wireless modem for an iPad or a laptop, as with MyWy on a JB'd iPhone ? Thanks !

  • Victor

    I am in Cupertino right now (corner of Lawrence Exp and Stevens Creek Blvd) and the Sprint Overdrive shows the 4G icon. A quick test via iPad shows ~3Mb download speed.

  • webvan

    That's great, so that means you are using the EVO 4G as a WiFi modem for your iPad ? Is that possible by default on the EVO 4G or is a tweak needed ?

    • Mitch

      No 4G in South San Francisco

  • scooby

    Have been using 4g for about a month now near Stanford campus. (palo alto).

    have tried speedtest.net late at night and had 5.5 megabit download and 1-2 megabit upload.

    during the day more like 2-3 megabit download and .5-1 megabit upload.

    i am on somewhat of a hill so i get better reception than most... but it is very patchy

  • Eric

    ***Santa Clara, Ca***

    Tried the 4G connection today after having the evo for 2 weeks and no luck. I have seen a brief 1 second connection twice until today....

    Today, all day at work Iv'e been getting 4G and doing DL tests ranging from 3.0-7.4 Mb depending on my location within the building here at work

  • vince

    Yeah i get 4g in santa clara right by great america area. and i got it a logitech ice in san jose. both sites gave me 3.xx down speed..

    I got a 4g connection by SJ Airport but there were no signal bars and it was slow as 3g. i then shut it off and turned in on a couple hours later and i have not been able to connect at the spot for 2 weeks now.

    Anybody get it by SJ Airport?

  • Mark

    Got it at the Lawrence Caltrain station. 3G speeds were 322/278, 4G was 1432/112. Faded in and out a bit

  • http://www.ttmcommunications.com Scott Morris

    Nothing in Morgan Hill...

  • Mitch

    I live off Bowers Ave in Santa Clara, just about 15 blocks from Great America, and have never received a 4G signal. When I turn it on it just says "scanning". So if it's around Great America it must be extremely weak, or highly directional.

  • chris

    I am getting a weak but consistent 4g signal here on paseo padre in east fremont.
    5.84 down/.44 up according to speedtest.net.

  • snowfan

    Just tested 4g out on Mountain View/ Palo Alto border off El Camino and San Antonio.

    Consistently reads 7.5 mps (download) with 1 mps (upload).

    (EDIT) This is with the Froyo Android 2.2 update!

  • gary

    I was in oakdale on the 4th of July and there was 4g there. Connected average 3-4down and .5-1 up, but nothing in gilroy yet. Did get the 2.2 upgrade though.

  • Chris

    I have checked all over the Bay Area, and the only place I seem to get consistent 4g coverage in Palo Alto. My buddy lives near downtown on University Ave and the 4g signal is about two bars there.

  • kevin

    I live near industrial blvd and huntwood in hayward and have been receiving a stable 4g for the last two weeks. I found only certain parts of hayward is getting 4g. The average speed have been 3.8 - 6.4 mbps. Still very fast. Hopefully sprint will release 4g all over the bay area, but it's a start.

  • Ed

    I work off of Seaport Blvd. in Redwood City and I've been getting a weak 4G signal while driving from 101 down Seaport to Pacific Shores. Only one or two bars, but it's there.

  • webvan

    Would love to check it out now that i'm in Palo Alto, unfortunately BestBuy does not appear to be restocking the EVO, any other place to get it?

  • gary

    Again I was in oakdale and the 4 g is strong there. In modesto too. In lathrop it fades in and out. Can't figure out why over there has 4g and not in bay area.

  • JJ1

    We went to Raging waters in san jose today all the time on 4g down was 8 up was 2.

  • KevinBond

    I got Sprint 4g on a laptop U301 device on Monday, Oct 4th for the first time. It was in Redwood City and lasted at least an hour (whole time I was online). It's the first time I ever got the "4g is available" option window since I got the U301.

    • KevinBond

      I meant to include that this was in Redwood City. It lasted at least an hour, the whole time I was online.

  • Kent

    I was in Santa Clara at Winchester/Pruneridge and got 4G. 8mb down and 4mb up. Also East San Jose and got 5 down and 2 up. Hopefully its coming everywhere soon!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It has already been confirmed for December in the Bay Area.

  • jon

    There is 4g in west san Jose area. My friend works for Sprint and he says it is slowly moving to the bay, but it is still unstable.

  • Joseph

    East San Jose, comes and goes!!