updated 07:25 am EDT, Mon October 18, 2010
Sprint 4G due for NYC Nov 1, LA and SF in December
Clearwire, Sprint and today finally committed themselves to launching their WiMAX-based 4G services in three of their most important markets. The companies will launch their flagship New York City access, along with rebranded Time Warner Cable service, on November 1. All will have a fallback to 3G for devices like the HTC Evo 4G or Overdrive routers that have both 3G and 4G onboard.
Los Angeles residents should get Clearwire and Sprint access without a cable partner on December 1. San Francisco will get its access only at the very end of December, but it will be supported by Comcast's rebadged Xfinity Internet 2go. Some readers have already reported getting 4G service on their smartphones in recent weeks, however.
Prices vary depending on the device and service, and whether it's fixed or mobile. Sprint's smartphone plans carry a $10 premium and cost $80 per month for unlimited data on 4G.
The expansion promises the first real 4G services in the respective cities and should give speeds between 3-6Mbps in real-world conditions, or about twice the speed of typical 3G. Clearwire and Sprint are nonetheless in a race as they already have to face T-Mobile's faster HSPA+ 3G speeds as well as the 12Mbps peaks of Verizon's imminent LTE network.