Sprint recently announced plans to switch from using WiMAX as its 4G standard to LTE. The carrier has revealed more details about this plan at 4G World, going on now in Chicago.
The goal for Sprint, according to a representative on the floor at 4G World, is to have 12 phones launch on its LTE network by or around June of next year. He added that Sprint’s commercial launch of LTE will be on the company’s 1900 MHz spectrum.
Sprint’s shift to LTE will not involve an out-and-out dropping of Clearwire’s WiMAX network — at least initially — said the company rep. Instead, the company will continue to support the Clearwire network in the coming years, and it will run concurrently with Sprint’s new 4G LTE network.
“Eventually it will be phased out,” the rep said in reference to Clearwire’s network. “But that won’t happen until a few years down the road. Think about how many devices we have on the Clearwire network right now. We can’t just shut it down.”
That won’t be the end of Sprint’s network adjustments, however, as the company’s vice president of network development and engineering, Iyad Tarazi, also said at the conference that Sprint will move on to LTE Advanced (Release 10 in a 10×10 configuration) by the first half of 2013.
With LTE Advanced, Sprint estimates that it will be able to offer download speeds of up to 12 Mbps – 15 Mbps, as well as Voice over LTE. Tarazi said that Sprint plans on launching VoLTE devices during the first quarter of 2013.