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.
If you have Sprint's version of the LG Optimus G, you may want to head into Settings > About phone and see if the latest OTA is available on your handset. The update – which bumps the device up to build LS970ZV9 – is just a small one that brings a couple of fairly minor enhancements to the device:
- Visual Voicemail update
- Battery improvements
This just started rolling out today, so don't stress if it's not yet available to you.
If you want to use Sprint's network without signing a contract, there are a lot of options out there, including its subsidiary Boost Mobile, the American MVNO Virgin, and hybrid provider Republic Wireless, among others. Sprint hopes that there are at least some prepaid customers left out there, because starting on January 25th, it will be offering its service in contract-free flavors.
Update: Sprint confirmed the new service to Fierce Wireless and provided some additional details.
Nearly a couple weeks ago, the Jelly Bean (4.1.1) update to the Evo 4G LTE
XL BBQ began to roll out. By now, we think it's safe to say that most or all of you have it. If you don't, however, or if you've already updated, flashed another ROM, and want to get back to stock, then maybe I can interest you in a nice RUU?
As a side note, if you're HTCDev unlocked, you'll need to relock your handset or you'll get an error while trying to run the .exe.
If you've been waiting for the best possible price on the EVO LTE, it's time to go ahead and buy. Why? Because Amazon Wireless is letting this handset go for a penny, and, well, it doesn't get much more affordable than that. This deal's good for both new customers and upgrades, so it's open for basically everyone (granted you're already eligible for upgrade). And of course, let's not forget that the handset was recently updated to Android 4.1, so now it's full of Jelly Bean goodness.
You know the drill by now. It's time for some new LTE market announcements! Woo! Party hard. The network rollouts today are coming to Pennsylvania, California, Indiana, Virginia and Puerto Rico. This comes on the heels of Sprint announcing its intention to purchase the remaining shares of Clearwire that it didn't already own.
Here's the list of new cities:
The CyanogenMod team has been slowly but surely rolling out CM 10.1 builds for various devices - mostly Samsung - over the last week or so. A handful of new tablets and phones hit just yesterday, including the LTE Galaxy Nexus variants, 3G Nexus 7, Galaxy S, SII, some SIII variants, and Galaxy Tab 2. Adding to that list, builds for the Verizon and Sprint variants just hit the scene this morning.
Today, Sprint announced that it would be spending $2.2bn to acquire the remaining (roughly) half of Clearwire that it doesn't already own. The transaction, which is naturally subject to regulatory approval, will give the carrier ownership of all of Clearwire's significant share of spectrum, which will be a huge boost to Sprint as it attempts to build out an LTE network to compete with Verizon and AT&T.
Of course, these deals can take forever to close, so in the meantime, the two companies have entered into a rather brilliant agreement: Sprint has promised to buy roughly $80m worth of Clearwire stock every month starting in January 2013 for up to ten months (or a total of $800m, and slightly more than 1/3rd of the total Clearwire purchase price).
Apparently it's the Day of the Deal, because the savings just keep rolling in. We've already highlighted a couple of good deals on GSIIIs today, but if that's just not your cup of tea, Amazon Wireless just knocked quite a bit off the price of Sprint's Note II and Optimus G for new customers.
As always, the closer we get to the holidays, the more deals we see. It's anything but uncommon to see one-day super deals pop up just before Christmas, and today Best Buy is offering the Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon variants of the 16GB Galaxy S III for just $50 and 32GB for $99 (Verizon only) with a two-year agreement. T-Mo customers are stuck paying a bit more, with the 16GB handset coming in at $80 and 32GB variant for $130.