Better late than never, I suppose. Today Sprint announced that it's bringing new LTE service to Boston and Framingham, Mass., Austin and Bryan-College Station, TX, Fort Wayne, IN, and Western Puerto Rico. The latter is actually not the first round of 4G coverage for the territory, as PR has had coverage in a few southern cities for a while. Additionally, the carrier improved its 3G services throughout the entire island.
It's a good start for 2013 as Sprint continues its Network Vision plan, which should only ramp up this year as a variety of deals—including the Softbank acquisition, the Clearwire buyout, and spectrum purchases—finalize.
AT&T has a problem on its hands. It's big, but is it big enough? If you're a CEO of a major corporation the answer to that question is always "no." However, the carrier has difficulty expanding on the home front. An overwhelming majority of U.S. citizens have phones with one carrier or another, so there's very little wiggle room to grab new customers. And gaining in market share when you (and all your competitors!) are dead set on locking people into two-year contracts is very difficult.
Have you heard that T-Mobile is working on an LTE network? It's true. According to an interview with the carrier's USA EVP and CTO Neville Ray over on FierceWireless, the company is "days away" from flipping the switch on its new towers. The initial rollout will take place in Las Vegas (where T-Mo had hoped to debut in time for CES, but was delayed), followed closely by Kansas City.
Thinking about switching to a prepaid carrier? As the fifth-largest U.S. cellular provider, MetroPCS should certainly be on your list (at least if you live in an urban area). Today they've shuffled up their tiered service plans, adding in some more full-speed data at the lower tiers and consolidating the highest tier into a single plan. For those of you who want the genuine article, don't worry: the $60 plan remains, with real unlimited 4G LTE data.
If you're a Verizon customer in an area that has yet to receive its share of the company's expansive LTE network, then every month's "new LTE list" is probably a nail-biter for you. Good news, though – you'll be covered by the end of 2013, according to a new post on Big Red's blog.
In its current state, Verizon's 4G LTE network covers an impressive 473 markets, which reaches roughly 273.5 million users.
T-Mobile is the smallest national US carrier, and it was also the last to announce a cogent strategy for the deployment of 4G LTE. Yes, after years of insisting to no end that HSPA+ is 4G, the magenta carrier is rolling out LTE. As part of that move, new phones are going to be needed. The first device designed for T-Mobile's LTE is a revamped version of the popular Samsung Galaxy S III.
Break out the popcorn, folks, it's time for some corporate drama. As we reported last month, LTE service provider Clearwire is looking to sell itself, with 50% stake holder Sprint Nextel the obvious choice. But while Sprint's $2.2 billion offer (plus another $800 million in staggered investments) sits on the desks of both Clearwire shareholders and the Federal Trade Commission for approval, satellite TV provider Dish Network has made another offer.
Samsung's on stage today at CES announcing all the devices (TVs, cameras, smart fridges and microwaves... seriously). Among them is a shiny new LTE version of the Galaxy Note 10.1. No word on how much the unit is going to cost but it will be arriving on Verizon sometime this month.
There's also no word yet on how much the plans will cost, but we can likely expect it will launch with comparable prices to the myriad other LTE tablets with Share Everything plans.
Android Police is live at NVIDIA's 2013 CES press conference at the Palms Hotel, primed and ready for what we can only assume will include the announcement of the next generation of Tegra mobile processors. Check out the ScribbeLive widget below for our coverage as it happens, starting at 7:45PM PST (that's 10:45PM EST).
Another day, another set of LTE networks. That's how the old saying goes, right? Eh, it's something like that, and when we're talking about the mobile world, I'd say that's pretty damn accurate. Just five days ago, AT&T announced a handful of LTE Market updates and expansions - not to be outdone by Verizon's twofer this month, though, Big Blue has just upped the ante with another set of activations.