updated 03:50 pm EDT, Fri October 31, 2008
Sprint committed to Nextel
Wireless voice and data network provider Sprint on Thursday announced it will extend its long-standing partnership with Motorola and enhance its unique iDEN network. Upgrades will include a greater network and infrastructure support along with software upgrades. In addition to Nextel Direct Connect's push-to-talk (PTT) service that relies on the iDEN network, Sprint will continue to offer its Sprint Mobile Broadband PTT service that uses the newer, faster EVDO Rev. A network to connect users instantly and without associated billable minutes.
At the same time, Sprint said it would add the Motorola i576 handset to its line-up on November 2nd, along with the BlackBerry Curve 8350i smartphone at an unspecified time later this year, both of which will offer the Nextel Direct Connect PTT service that connects users in under one second. Eight other Nextel Direct Connect compatible handsets will launch in 2009, with five of those handsets coming in the first half of the year.
The provider's next-generation PTT service based on the EVDO Rev. A network is available on the previously announced handsets from LG, Samsung, Sanyo and Motorola in about 40 markets.
Sprint will also refocus its prepaid Boost Mobile operations by introducing a lower per-minute rate, as well as a Boost Unlimited plan early in 2009 that will include a nationwide home calling area for a set monthly fee.