Sprint is known for its unlimited data plans and it is currently the only major carrier that doesn’t throttle excessive data use. Following the announcement that Sprint planned to discontinue its WiMAX buildout and switch to the more widely used LTE standard, however, the company never mentioned whether its upcoming LTE network would continue to offer unlimited data plans. To clarify the issue, Sprint on Tuesday confirmed to TechHog that its 4G LTE devices “will be available on Sprint’s network featuring unlimited data.” While the carrier’s initial 4G LTE rollout will be limited, data-hungry users who are not pleased with AT&T and Verizon’s 2GB and 5GB plans may be tempted to switch to Sprint when the carrier’s LTE services begin to go live in the coming weeks and months. More →
HTC and Sprint have a big press conference scheduled to take place this evening, and all signs point to a new flagship smartphone. Persistent rumors suggest the flagship HTC One X will be the star of the show, and with specs that include a 4.7-inch 720p HD display, a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon processor, a remarkable 8-megapixel camera, Beats Audio and 4G LTE on board, there’s no question it would make a great star. A recent report suggests the One X could launch on Sprint later this year as the EVO One, but nothing is set in stone until we hear it straight from the horse’s mouth. BGR will be reporting live from the event in New York City, so be sure to check back for all the news as it breaks.
Bookmark this link, which will go live shortly before the event begins tonight, and make sure to head there for our live coverage of Sprint and HTC’s press conference! Coverage will begin just before 5:30 p.m. EDT / 2:30 p.m. PDT.
While speaking at the Competitive Carriers Global Expo, Sprint’s senior vice president of networks Bob Azzi said that while the company has experienced success with its WiMAX handsets, it will not launch any additional WiMAX devices. The announcement comes after Sprint previously confirmed that it would continue to offer 4G WiMAX devices through 2012 and support the service through 2015. Instead, the company plans to focus on its Network Vision project and upcoming 4G LTE netowrk, Fierce Wireless reported on Thursday. “We are wrapping up final field integration tests,” Azzi said. “The technology works and delivers more benefits than we expected.” The executive noted that the company’s Network Vision project will result in a 50% reduction in cost-per-gigabyte to deliver data and cost-per-minute to deliver voice. “This is a huge benefit to us,” he said, adding that there are between 5,000 to 6,000 people devoted to the project, which is slated to be completed by the end of 2013. More →
Earlier this weak, Australian regulators claimed that Apple was misleading consumers with false promotions and advertisements for its new “4G” iPad tablet. While the new iPad supports some 4G LTE networks, users in most regions are stuck with HSPA and HSPA+ 3G networks. After the allegation, Apple began to offer refunds to Australian iPad owners who felt duped by the company’s 4G claims. Now, regulators in the U.K. have confirmed that they are looking into various complaints regarding the new iPad, Pocket-lint reports. The Wall Street Journal is also reporting that Sweden’s Consumer Agency is considering an investigation into whether Apple’s “4G” marketing is misleading as well. Apple has not addressed the matter publicly. More →
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on Tuesday claimed that Apple is using misleading promotions for its new iPad tablet, Reuters reported. The ACCC will ask an Australian high court on Wednesday to order the Cupertino-based company to make customers aware of the true technical capabilities of the device, correct its current advertising and refund any affected buyers. Apple’s newest iPad can utilize 4G LTE networks, however it can only do so in North America. The company has still advertised the device as a “4G” tablet in countries where it is not compatible. Australian carrier Telstra offers the country’s only 4G LTE network, but it uses different spectrum than carriers in the United States and Canada. More →
Global 4G LTE smartphone shipments reached 6.8 million units in the technology’s first year. According to a study from market research firm Strategy Analytics, global LTE smartphone shipments could surge tenfold to 67 million units in 2012. It is expected to be a breakout year for LTE technology, with Apple, Samsung, HTC and others planning to launch 4G LTE phones in the United States, Japan and South Korea. “The mobile industry is entering a breakout year for 4G LTE technology. Multiple operators and multiple phone vendors will be launching dozens of LTE models across numerous countries worldwide,” said Neil Mawston, Executive Director at Strategy Analytics. “LTE has quickly become a high-growth, high-value market that no operator, service developer, device vendor or component maker can afford to ignore.” Read on for Strategy Analytics’s press release. More →
Apple’s new iPad has already seen massive success, selling over 3 million units in less than four days of availability. The tablet features an updated A5X chip, a beautiful Retina display and 4G LTE connectivity. Due to the blazing fast 4G speeds on Apple’s iPad Wi-Fi + 4G models, it is estimated that half of all new iPads sold will be LTE enabled. Analytics firm Localytics has countered previous reports, however, stating that only 6% of all iPad sessions using apps with its tracking software installed connect to the Internet through a cellular network. The firm found that 89.7% of all iPads are Wi-Fi only, while 8.8% were 3G-enabled and 1.5% included 4G. Users with iPads equipped with 3G use cellular data 45% of the time, while users with 4G devices only utilize LTE 36% of the time. Localytics compiled its connectivity report using data collected between March 16th and March 21st, and the company’s infographic can be found after the break. More →
In a recent report, an analyst for global financial firm UBS predicted that sales of Apple’s new iPad tablet will be split 50/50 between Wi-Fi-only and Wi-Fi + 4G models. “With an HD screen, faster processor and higher-resolution camera, we believe this device will drive demand for faster connectivity,” UBS senior analyst John Hodulik said in research note. Due to Verizon’s superior LTE coverage, Hodulik believes the carrier has a definite edge over AT&T when it comes to selling the device. GigaOm reported on Thursday that previous generations of the iPad were split 60/40 between Wi-Fi-only and 3G models, although it is unclear if users’ tablets were actively subscribed to a carrier’s network. More →
AT&T on Monday confirmed that it sold and activated more iPad tablets this past Friday than it has on any other single day. “On Friday, March 16, AT&T set a new single-day record for its iPad sales and activations, demonstrating robust demand for the new iPad on the nation’s largest 4G network, covering nearly 250 million people,” AT&T said in a statement. The carrier did not share any sales figures, however, and neither did Apple CEO Tim Cook earlier on Monday when he said that Apple’s new iPad saw record sales during its debut weekend. BGR noted on Friday evening that while iPads were much easier to find this year compared to Apple’s previous two iPad launches, AT&T’s iPad Wi-Fi + 4G was sold out more than any other model at more Apple Stores we spoke with.
NetZero burst onto the scene in 1998 as the first in a crop of Internet service providers that gave subscribers free access to the Web using an advertising-supported model. NetZero’s patented ad technology displayed highly targeted ads to users as they browsed the Internet at dial-up speeds, but it was forced into a freemium model when a number of other ISPs began offering free Web access as well. NetZero continues to offer basic paid dial-up and broadband services, but now the company is going back to its roots in an effort to disrupt the wireless industry as it did to the dial-up industry nearly 14 years ago. More →
A recent report from The Verge has confirmed that Apple’s new iPad does not support FaceTime video calling over LTE networks. When trying to initiate a FaceTime call over 4G, the user is prompted to first connect to a Wi-Fi network. The news comes as little surprise since FaceTime on Apple’s iPhone is also limited to Wi-Fi. Verizon and AT&T’s 4G LTE networks are faster than some Wi-Fi connections however, and it is disappointing to say the least that the service isn’t supported. Oddly enough, the iPad does support a mobile hotspot feature, at least on Verizon, and users can successfully make a FaceTime call from an iPhone while tethered to the iPad. At this time it is unclear whether FaceTime’s Wi-Fi limitation is Apple’s decision or a move requested by wireless carriers. Verizon and AT&T did not immediately respond to a request for comment. More →
Research in Motion’s BlackBerry PlayBook may be down, but it’s definitely not out. Over a year ago, the company revealed plans to release an LTE-compatible PlayBook as well as a 3G model that will work on HSPA+ networks. Details surrounding these variants have been few and far between, with some assuming they were simply canceled. As it turns out, two tablets from Research in Motion recently passed through the FCC equipped with HSPA+ connectivity and AT&T compatible LTE radios. BGR in January exclusively reported details about RIM’s plans to introduce a new PlayBook tablet around May or June that will be equipped with a 1.5GHz processor, built-in HSPA+ and NFC support. More →
Following a brief unconfirmed nationwide outage suffered by Verizon Wireless’s 4G LTE network on Tuesday morning, the carrier seemingly sought to draw attention to LTE expansion rather than the growing pains that have repeatedly plagued its next-generation wireless network. While speaking with Dow Jones Newswires on Tuesday, Verizon Wireless chief technical officer David Small said the carrier plans to double its LTE coverage by the end of 2012. “By the end of the year, our plan is to be in at least 400 markets across the country,” Small said, suggesting that approximately 260 million Americans would then be covered by Verizon 4G. Read on for more. More →