updated 11:00 am EDT, Thu August 16, 2007
Sprint on Thursday officially rebadged its upcoming WiMAX-based network XOHM (pronounced "zome"), giving an identity to the 4G Internet services that customers will use beginning later this year with trials in Baltimore, Chicago, and Washington D.C. as well as the final commercial service which will go live across a wider area by spring 2008. The cellular provider did not commit to service plans but reportedly intends to offer between 2Mbps and 4Mbps download speeds for approximately $50 per month and has already announced a deal with Clearwire to allow roaming between networks. Visitors can sign up for e-mail notices to learn when XOHM goes live, Sprint says.
Additionally, the company also alluded to a potentially device-agnostic approach to its WiMAX service, suggesting that it would not limit connections to the cellphones and network adapters that are currently offered from cellular networks. Portable media players, cameras, and other devices are expected to suport WiMAX and would let users upload photos or video clips on-location or buy and download whole music albums in real-time, Sprint suggested. Over 50 million individual devices with WiMAX are scheduled for production in the near future.
Sprint also expects to cover a large portion of the country within the next few years, providing about 100 million potential customers with the option by the end of 2008 in tandem with Clearwire and 125 million users by the end of 2010.