Orlando residents have 2 exciting things going on as of today - Disney World and now Sprint's 4G service. Today, the company officially announced the launch of 4G in Florida's 5th largest city, immediately available to all EVO 4G and Epic 4G users.

Sprint has been on fire lately - the announcement follows hot on the heels of last week's Nashville 4G launch and the introduction of Epic 4G in the beginning of the month. Sprint’s 4G service now covers 53 markets.

Users of the only 2 aforementioned devices capable of running on Sprint’s 4G network are charged an extra $10 "premium data" fee, no matter whether 4G is available in their area or not.

As Sprint’s 4G network expands, be sure to follow its growth on our up-to-date 4G Coverage Tracker, right here at Android Police.

Full press release follows:

20 September 2010

Sprint Launches 4G Service in Orlando

Sprint Brings Its High-Speed Wireless Service to Orlando; Three Cities in Florida now have 4G

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (BUSINESS WIRE), September 20, 2010 - Sprint (NYSE:S) officially launched 4G in Orlando today. The next generation in wireless service provides speeds that are up to 10 times faster than 3G service1 and it is now available to customers in Orlando. Sprint 4G enables fast mobile downloads, video chat and a range of innovative and useful wireless applications. Travelers on the way to Disney World can download a movie for children to watch in the car in a matter of minutes on the Samsung Epic™ 4G. If you can’t get enough Disney while in Orlando, Sprint 4G users can enjoy popular Disney shows on Sprint TV. Sprint 4G makes wireless applications run even better because the new service is so fast.

Sprint offers a growing portfolio of 4G-enabled devices, including HTC EVO™ 4G, the nation’s first 4G-capable handset, and the newly launched Samsung Epic 4G. Both operate on the Android™ platform. These products are part of a large selection of 4G-capable modems, mobile hotspots and routers that enable 4G advantages of rapid mobile downloads of large files, high-quality streaming video and high-speed Web browsing.

“Orlando is the third city in Florida to receive 4G service,” said Matt Carter, president of Sprint 4G. “We are continuing to deliver on our commitment to serve our customers by rolling out 4G in more cities in 2010. Customers in Florida are hungry for the power and speed that 4G provides and today they have it.”

To demonstrate the confidence that Sprint has in the power of 4G, Sprint offers the Sprint Free Guarantee, which allows customers to try 4G for 30 days. If they are not satisfied, they can cancel service and have the opportunity to be fully reimbursed.2

Sprint 4G is now available in 53 markets: California – Merced, Modesto, Stockton, Visalia; Delaware – Wilmington; Florida – Daytona Beach, Jacksonville, Orlando; Georgia – Atlanta, Milledgeville; Hawaii – Honolulu, Maui; Idaho – Boise; Illinois – Chicago; Maryland – Baltimore; Massachusetts – Boston; Michigan – Grand Rapids; Missouri – Kansas City, St. Louis; New York – Rochester, Syracuse; Nevada – Las Vegas; North Carolina – Charlotte, Greensboro (includes High Point and Winston-Salem), Raleigh (includes Cary, Chapel Hill and Durham); Oregon – Eugene, Portland, Salem; Pennsylvania – Harrisburg, Lancaster, Philadelphia, Reading, York; Rhode Island – Providence; Tennessee – Nashville; Texas – Abilene, Amarillo, Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Killeen/Temple, Lubbock, Midland/Odessa, San Antonio, Waco, Wichita Falls; Utah – Salt Lake City; Virginia – Richmond; and Washington – Bellingham, Seattle, Tri-Cities, Yakima.

Sprint is delivering the power of 4G as the majority shareholder of Clearwire, the independent company that is building the WiMAX network. For more information, visit www.sprint.com/4G.

About Sprint Nextel

Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 48.1 million customers at the end of the second quarter of 2010 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, Common Cents Mobile and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. With its customer-focused strategy, you can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.

1 “Up to 10x faster” based on download speed comparison of 3G’s 600 kbps vs. 4G’s 6 Mbps. Industry published 3G avg. speeds (600 kbps-1.7 Mbps); 4G avg. speeds (3-6 Mbps). Actual speeds may vary by plan or based on other factors.

2 Refund excludes usage not included in the plan, premium content, third-party billing and international charges.

Source: Sprint PR

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.

  • http://rickosborne.org/ Rick O

    It's a nice press release, but it's more fiction than fact. I live in Orlando, and while you can occasionally get a 4G signal while driving around, it's very low quality and drops back to 3G if you breathe too hard.

    It looks like the download speeds on 4G are slightly faster than 3G: SpeedTest averages ~1.6Mbps down, but shows a clear cap of 64Kbps up. And the signal is spotty enough that while you might get that speed for a second or two, you'll spend the next 10-15 seconds with nothing as you reacquire service.

    All that at the low, low price of several hours less battery life each day.


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

      Rick, are you sure what you've been observing wasn't just a scaled down test? Chances are, if you try to connect today, 4G will be ramped all the way up.

      Here in the Bay Area, where 4G hasn't been announced yet, we also have very spotty 4G signal. I wouldn't make my judgment based on that if they were to release it tomorrow - I'd go out and try it out all over the place again.

      • http://rickosborne.org/ Rick O

        A few friends and I have been keeping an eye on it since it started to show up a few weeks ago. Coverage has expanded, slowly, in that time, but even today it's not any different than it was last week. Those 1.6Mbps/64Kbps numbers have been pretty constant -- I got them during the test and again this morning. And just like the last few weeks, I was lucky if I was able to maintain a constant signal.

        I will happily come back and eat crow if Sprint throws the magic switch and WiMAX blankets the area. But so far today ... nope.

      • http://rickosborne.org/ Rick O

        I've done a bit more testing with this. If I walk outside and into a large open field, I can get 2 bars of 4G/WiMAX signal and a bit more than 2MBps down / 1MBps up. As soon as I walk indoors, no matter the construction of the building, I drop back to full bars with 3G at 0.5Mbps down and 0.2Mbps up.

        Maybe it's Sprint's master plan that we all get tans in the Florida sun?

        • TST

          Rick, I would just keep testing around, you might be in a bad area. I almost always get above 5mbps.
          Here is a photo of my evo and my brother's epic in altamonte: http://i.imgur.com/3YyL5.jpg

          and here is my brother's Epic at the fastest he's had yet: http://i.imgur.com/rQRhF.jpg

    • http://stuccorx.com Tony I

      Wow.4 g is awesome on the htc evo.crystal clear video chatting.i clocked 8.7 download on speedtest.net .never under 3 .the only time i lost 4 g coverage is when i ventured outside of city limits.

  • TST

    Up until lat wednesday, I couldn't connect o any 4G towers with my EVO while my brother's EPIC was connecting from Longwood through Oviedo down through Orlando(Downtown, Valencia, UCF). We've been comparing speed tests all week and my brother maxed out at 962KBps, we both averaged 600KBps which in my opinion is amazing, especially when compared to Sprint's 3G average of 90KBps.

  • Rob C

    No one has made mention of Tampa, Fl going live with 4G service. I have been receiving 4g signal in Tampa, Fl for over 2 weeks. Download speeds were coming in at just under 4 mbps and uploads aboout 1 mbps.

    • http://OMGrant.com OMGrant

      WTF: I live on Fletcher and I'm not getting shit!

  • Luke

    I was thinking the 4g service would be substantially faster. 669 is not impressive, check out T Mobile speeds in orlando. http://db.tt/MoioI5B

  • http://rickosborne.org/ Rick O

    Well, I said I'd return and eat crow if things got faster. In the days since the launch, WiMAX has been showing up in more places, and the places where it is seem to be getting more solid and speedy. When I can get a good signal, I'm now seeing 4Mbps or better. I still see quite a bit of latency on network changes (i.e., walking outside to go from 3G to WiMAX) where apps will just spin for 20-30 seconds waiting for the negotiation to finish, but ... I guess it's better than not having it at all.