It's only been a couple years since the EVO launched as not only the first WiMax phone, but the first "4G" phone (by carrier reckoning). Now, though, Sprint says that not only will there be no more WiMax phones, which we knew earlier, but no more WiMax devices at all. That means hotspots and tablets will also lack any WiMax antennae. Don't worry, though. Sprint has promised 15 LTE devices by year's end.

Sprint's LTE plans have been no secret, although not without a fair amount of bumps in the road.  Still, Sprint insists that its LTE plans are on schedule. So far, no LTE markets have been lit up, but Sprint should be activating our favorite network acronym in a few cities by mid-2012. "Mid-2012", by an unsurprising coincidence, is also around the time that the so-called EVO One is rumored to land. An early June release date for an EVO sequel would follow the pattern, and June is just about as mid as 2012 can get. If the information we've heard is true, and Sprint's variant of the HTC One X does, in fact, carry LTE, Sprint users' long wait to taste those high-bandwidth waters may finally be over in a few short months.

The most interesting tidbit, though, is what Sprint's Senior Vice President of Networks, Bob Azzi, had to say about how this new LTE network would affect Sprint's bottom line. Azzi said that Sprint's new network plans would result in a 50 percent reduction in cost per gigabyte to deliver data, and also a 50 percent reduction in cost per minute to deliver voice.

This is great news for Sprint, which hasn't exactly been swimming in cash lately. However, it does raise the question, if Sprint is able to cut delivery costs by 50% with a new CDMA-LTE network, why are other carriers so insistent that data costs for their fancy new networks are rising, not falling? Perhaps the number of customers gobbling up data is growing at a much faster rate (which is almost certainly true), or maybe Sprint has some kind of deal with other LTE carriers that reduce its costs.

Azzi also notes that Sprint's Network Vision plan "will be nearly complete" by 2013. It's unclear just what this plan entails, or how much of the country it plans on covering in LTE. In fact, given the recent upheavals with Sprint's partners, we'd be surprised if even Sprint knows for sure. Still, good to see that the failed Lightsquared deal hasn't set Sprint too far back. Or so it seems.

Source: Fierce Wireless

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • Michael

    Anyone know what current WIMAX 4G phone owners can expect as far as future service?

    • http://www.sytlogic.com Karl Carpenter

      They will maintain WiMax until 2015(? maybe an old figure?) as is. No growth, but no degredation in service.

      • http://soundcloud.com/spriteman Spriteman

        When will WiMax stop growing? There have been promised upgrades in my area, methinks. My 4G is somewhat spotty at times.

  • Michael Berrios

    you will still have 3g just no 4g as of 2013 if i remember correctly

  • Skillit

    Sprint releasing LTE phones is as silly as AT&T releasing them, the frist has 0 LTE areas the second has only a couple...

    • Liam Vain

      Sprint has the same four starting areas as AT&T and has already said they will be add more by the end of the year.

      • reala

        Think I heard that before......With wimax maybe?

        • drksilenc

          no they have lte up in 4 cities...

  • Nathan A


  • toshistation

    So, there's going to be the Galaxy Nexus, the LG Viper, the EVO One, the Galaxy S III, the iPhone 5 (if it ends up being LTE) at least two mifis, let's assume two tablets, one Moto, and one Samsung or HTC LTE Phone. That still only brings us to 11 devices. What are the other four going to be, is my question.

    • Zachary Jacob Zblewski

      Mid-range phones?

  • Awesome Sauce

    My sprint nexus s 4g has never been slower. 3g is a joke, the phone sucks, switching from 3g to 4g takes at least a minute. Anything is better than the current hell we get to pay out the nose for. Where's the official ICS?

  • Shad0wguy

    I'm hoping they keep unlimited data when they add LTE. Or at least let prior customers get grandfathered in. Otherwise I'll likely jump ship, since that is the only reason I've been putting up with Sprint's crappy 3g speeds.

  • Rockingmyevo3d

    I wish sprint and their LTE network well. I have moved on to my GALAXY NEXUS on Verizon and happy to have the BEST stock device on the planet. My sprint friends and family should be happy to be seeing another EVO coming down the pipe. If it wasn't for the orginal EVO the very first 4g android device who knows how networks will be today. Sprint ushered in the 4g era and I appreciate that most.

  • Pino

    then whats the point of paying for the premium wimax up charger if were not receiving it

  • Sprint Bites

    For what its worth: Spent 4 years on Sprint and was miserable. No 3 or 4g in my area (Verizon has 3g and is prepping for 4g, ATT is running 3.75g HSPA+). Was with ATT for the last 5 years. Recently went to Verizon and have never been happier. Sprint stinks on all fronts and will never go back.