What is Sprint Playing at With 4G?

3:30 PM -- Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) has dribbled away its "4G Now" advantage over the past year, apparently happy to squabble with Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) over wholesale pricing instead of building out more WiMax-powered markets.

On Monday, Verizon Wireless said that it is adding 19 new markets, which means that it will have over 70 Long Term Evolution (LTE) markets online, matching Sprint's 4G city count.

This basically removes one of Sprint's key selling points. It has brought in a decent number of new customers with phones that can run between Clearwire's WiMax network and its 3G CDMA infrastructure.

Now Clearwire needs more funds to continue building out its network. Hence, Sprint is seeing minimal additions to its 4G network.

This is bad news for the carrier. Verizon is likely to quickly ramp up the number of LTE smartphones on its network. What happens to Sprint when an LTE iPhone arrives on rival networks?

To be fair, Sprint still has unlimited data pricing on its side. But the reasons for picking Sprint as a carrier seem to be diminishing, to me at least.

The operator needs to freshen up its 4G plans as soon as possible.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

Be the first to post a comment regarding this story.
Sign In