Sprint's $199 WiMax EVO Phone Out June 4

NEW YORK -- Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) said Wednesday night that its first Wimax smartphone -- the High Tech Computer Corp. (HTC) (Taiwan: 2498) EVO 4G -- will be available on June 4 at a price of $199.

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse was on hand at the Escape Club on the West Side of Manhattan to show off the new phone. He once again highlighted the video capabilities of the phone, declaring that people could "ditch" their camcorder and point-and-shoot camera in favor of the HD video and 8-megapixel camera built into the EVO. (See CTIA 2010: Sprint Goes Supersonic and Sprint Pins Hopes on WiMax Phone.)

Click on the image below for photos of the phone and the launch event:

Its Here!

Sprint's WiMax partner Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) hasn't yet switched on mobile WiMax in NYC, so Sprint rolled in a radio truck to get faster radio coverage, though no one could tell LR Mobile exactly where the portable cellsite was located.

The faster WiMax service, which hits average downloads of 6 Mbit/s, is available in 32 cities in the US, and Sprint intends to have around 15 more cities online by the end of 2010. Where so-called "4G" connectivity isn't available, the smartphone will switch to the CDMA 3G network.

The phone runs Android 2.1 and can support Flash video. "It looks like its running Flash, so it supports the real Internet," said Sprint's Kevin Packingham, SVP of development, during a video demo, a reference to the spat between Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) and Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE) over mobile Flash support. (See Adobe Fires Back: We Don’t Need Apple.)

The operator also showed how the EVO can act as a WiFi hotspot by connecting an iPad to the WiMax network via the handset. There will apparently be an additional charge of $29.99 a month for using the functionality for connecting up to eight additional WiFi devices.

Users can buy the phone for $199 with a two-year contract and a mail-in $100 rebate. Plans will start at $79.99 for unlimited monthly data access.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile
digits 12/5/2012 | 4:36:23 PM
re: Sprint's $199 WiMax EVO Phone Out June 4

OK, I'm not asking whether it has a flying app -- just wondering, as it's hard to tell from across the pond, whether this is likely to fly out the door on June 4. 

joset01 12/5/2012 | 4:36:22 PM
re: Sprint's $199 WiMax EVO Phone Out June 4

Heh, I think it'll be the most popular device that Sprint has launched in a while. Will it match Apple levels? I can't tell, probably not, I think the plan pricing, particularly with the $30 extra WiFi docking charge might be off-putting.

joset01 12/5/2012 | 4:36:21 PM
re: Sprint's $199 WiMax EVO Phone Out June 4

We'll be there to check it out at launch for sure.

bergea 12/5/2012 | 4:33:37 PM
re: Sprint's $199 WiMax EVO Phone Out June 4

Here is my first take as a first time use of the Sprint 4G EVO from HTC, a day before the scheduled launch on June 4.  It will certainly fly off the shelves as one the most advanced 3G smartphones available, and the 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and 512MB of onboard RAM running Android 2.1 drives the blazing speed of its multimedia capabilities. First I downloaded all my favorite Android apps and tested its video and audio capabilities with a few Youtube videos.  Great out of the box experience. 

With a 4.3-inch 480 x 800 pixel LCD display and a rear kick stand, the EVO looks more like a mobile TV than a phone.  I would not mind watching the Celtics-Lakers NBA Finals on this screen in a pinch.  I cannot wait to try the 8-megapixel auto-focus camera to take photos and the 1.3 MP camera facing me for a Qik two-way video chat.  I will let you know what I will do to test the HD-capable video camcorder.   

Since WiMAX is not yet available either Boston or LA, I will need to rely on Sprint's 3G EV-DO network connectivity to watch sports or news on Sprint TV.  So far so good.  But if I will need to wait a few months or take a trip to test EVO on Sprint 4G, it seems unfair that I have to pay an additional $10 a month for the 4G.  I hope I at least get some exclusive content or unique apps to justify the additional monthly fees. 

I can see that all this multimedia activity will quickly drain the battery, but I hear that the EVO has a longer battery life than the iPhone 3GS, the Droid Incredible and the Nexus One.   Move over Verizon Droid and watch out AT&T iPhone 4 – this Sprint EVO is on fire. 


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