Sprint Nextel Corp. has announced its plans to develop and deploy a 4G (fourth generation) network across the USA to provide broadband mobile services. The 4G wireless broadband network will use the mobile WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) IEEE 802.16e-2005 technology standard.
Working together with Intel, Motorola and Samsung, Sprint Nextel will develop a nationwide network infrastructure as well as mobile WiMAX-enabled chipsets that will support advanced wireless broadband services for computing, portable multimedia, interactive and other consumer electronic devices.
The Sprint Nextel 4G mobility network will use the company's 2.5GHz spectrum holdings, which cover 85 percent of the households in the top 100 U.S. markets.
To access that network, Sprint Nextel will work with Intel, Motorola and Samsung to incorporate WiMAX technology for advanced wireless communications and help make chipsets widely available for new consumer electronics devices, connecting consumers to the Internet and to each other while providing them with the flexibility to do what they want or need to do regardless of time or place.
The company's deployment plans target a launch of the advanced wireless broadband services in trial markets by the end of 2007 with plans to deploy a network that reaches as many as 100 million people in 2008. Sprint Nextel plans to expand mobile WiMAX network coverage thereafter.
The company will continue to invest in and offer access to its current wireless and Sprint Power Vision mobile broadband networks to serve customer communications needs today and into the future.
Sprint Nextel has created a unique business model designed to foster the rapid deployment and adoption of mobile WiMAX technology in the United States and abroad. the company is expecting to invest US$1 billion in 2007 and between US$1.5 billion and US$2 billion in 2008 relating to the 4G mobile broadband network.
The WiMAX technology to be deployed in the network is expected to offer a cost-per-megabit and performance advantage that reflects a substantial improvement in the comparable costs for the current 3G mobile broadband offerings.
Motorola and Samsung will also support Sprint's current and CDMA/EV-DO network technologies by creating multimode devices that will support services on both the 4G network and the 3G network in areas outside the planned 4G coverage, and will provide voice service using the core 3G network. The 4G broadband network will offer a complementary, high-bandwidth service driven by data centric devices.
Sprint Nextel's long-term goal is to have a broad range of mobile WiMAX-enabled chipsets and modules and an array of portable data and consumer electronics devices available from multiple vendors which work seamlessly among Sprint's network offerings.