Sprint unveils cities to receive 4G WiMax in 2009 and 2010

Posted by Samantha Rose Hunt

Chicago (IL) - Sprint announced that it will be deploying WiMax services in then cities within the United States in 2009, and five additional cities in 2010. So far, WiMax access is only available in Baltimore.

"Sprint continues to lead the wireless industry by harnessing the power of WiMax," Todd Rowley, vice president of Sprint 4G, said in a statement. "The availability of Sprint 4G in more places this year and our aggressive expansion of Sprint 4G service demonstrates our commitment to provide 4G capabilities and devices nationwide for our business, consumer and government customers. These capabilities enable significantly enhanced performance and productivity for our customers."

This year, Atlanta, Charlotte, Dallas, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Chicago, Seattle, Philadelphia and Portland will get WiMax . In 2010 the service will come to Boston, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. In the next two years, Sprint plans to launch multiple 4G devices including a single-mode 4G data card, devices embedded in laptops, a small-office/home-office broadband modem and also a tri-mode phone.

Despite its poor fourth quarter earnings, Sprint is moving forward with its plans to deliver 4G WiMax. Verizon Wireless has shared future plans for Long Term Evolution (LTE), which directly competes with WiMax.  Testing of LTE has begun in Minneapolis, Columbus and Northern New Jersey. Additionally, the company is testing the product in Budapest, Duesseldorf and Madrid in Europe.

Verizon Wireless claims that field tests have produced download speeds between 50 and 60 Mb/s at its peak. However, the company stresses that average download rates cannot be determined until the service is launched commercially.