Sprint-Spotify tie-up could include discounted Framily group access
Sprint customers may soon be receiving a discount on Spotify, as part of a deal between the two companies, according to a report. An announcement by the carrier, allegedly scheduled to take place on April 29 in New York alongside its expected HD Voice launch, will apparently see Sprint customers receiving free trials of Spotify Premium, with some carrier subscribers potentially qualifying for Spotify discounts.
Early termination fee payment, phone trade-in bonuses in Sprint promotion
Following the lead of similar promotions by T-Mobile and AT&T, Sprint is looking to poach customers to its network, by paying up to $650 per line. The carrier will provide customers switching their number to Sprint from another network and signs up for its Framily plan with two bonuses, in order to help pay for the cost of transferring to the service.
Revamped HTC One M8 knocks Galaxy S4 from second at Verizon
The iPhone -- specifically, the iPhone 5s -- has been the top seller at all four major US carriers since its introduction, a trend that continued in March according to figures compiled by Canaccord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley. The year-old Samsung Galaxy S4 took second place among three of the four carriers, though it was knocked out of second at Verizon by the new HTC One M8. The S4 took third at Verizon, with the company's Note 3 phablet taking third at AT&T and Sprint, while the LG G2 took third at T-Mobile.
Sprint event asks for attendees to 'hear it for yourself'
Sprint has sent out invitations to an event in New York, asking members of the press to "hear it for yourself." Though the invitation does not specifically mention what exactly will be demonstrated, the April 29th event is likely to be a formal unveiling of Sprint's delayed HD Voice service, and an announcement about the high-quality audio call's national launch.
High-quality voice calls heading to Sprint subscribers this summer
Sprint will be launching its delayed HD Voice on compatible smartphones in the majority of markets across the United States this summer, the head of the carrier has revealed. CEO Dan Hesse revealed during a keynote talk at Oracle Industry Connect that the high-quality voice service will roll out for subscribers throughout the country "around the first of July."
Units are still locked to Virgin Mobile, cannot be legally unlocked
Sprint subsidiary Virgin Mobile, which sells CDMA iPhone models without an obligation to a monthly contract, is running a sale on both the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s, with the 16GB 5c starting at $315, with the 32GB at $385. The iPhone 5s is available for $385 (16GB), $455 (32GB) or $525 (64GB). There is a catch to the offer: the iPhones are all locked to Virgin Mobile, and the carrier doesn't unlock the phones. Under current US law, it is illegal to unlock a carrier-locked smartphone without the company's blessing.
Samsung Galaxy S5 pre-orders similar to other carriers
Following the unveiling of pre-order plans by a number of other carriers, Sprint and RadioShack have both revealed how they will sell the Samsung Galaxy S5. RadioShack will start accepting pre-orders from March 21st, while Sprint has opened up its pre-orders for the smartphone today, and will be offering the new Samsung smart watch range as well.
Total of 330 technical consultants will lose jobs at Sprint
Sprint is closing a number of its stores and repair centers, in an effort to reduce its expenditure. Part of cuts revealed by Sprint in January, the SoftBank-owned carrier laid off a total of 330 technical consultants, shutting down 150 service and repair centers in the process, as well as closing 55 stores deemed to be performing under expectations.
Prepaid service relaunch accompanied by Sprint Money Express
Sprint will offer its customers a revamped third prepaid mobile phone service, alongside existing brands Boost Mobile and Virgin. Sprint Prepaid will apparently offer a similar service to what customers receive under its existing contract plans, with most options offering unlimited talk and text, and while there is a plan to provide unlimited data, it does come with some potential deal-breakers.
Deal likely to be halted by US regulators, but effort will be made anyhow
In a television interview with PBS's Charlie Rose, Sprint chairman Masayoshi Son declared that he was interested in buying T-Mobile. Citing "steps and details" that have yet to be negotiated, the executive claimed that he "would like to have the real fight, OK? Not the pseudo fight, the real fight" with competitors AT&T and Verizon.
Sprint alleged to have overcharged for illegal equipment install
Wireless carrier Sprint is being sued by the US government for overcharging for its services in cellphone surveillance. Allegedly, the carrier submitted $21 million above and beyond its actual expenses (which it is entitled to). The government, however, is seeking triple damages -- $63 million -- as the violation by the carrier is charged to have been a willing and blatant violation of the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA), the law that allows Sprint to be reimbursed for reasonable expenses associated with data collection.
Age of device likely overriding concern
Sprint-based MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) Ting will start supporting unlocked iPhone 5 units on its network by next week, sources say. The carrier's iPhone support has so far been limited to the iPhone 4 and 4S; iPhone 5 support has allegedly been held up by Sprint, which often avoids allowing phones on MVNOs until they're a generation or more behind. Because the iPhone 5s and 5c have been available for several months already, the iPhone 5 has reportedly been given the go-ahead.
Two Android devices work with Sprint Wi-Fi service, more expected later in 2014
Sprint is following in the footsteps of T-Mobile, by allowing customers to make calls over Wi-Fi. The service will let users make and receive calls and texts through their registered Sprint number through the network connection when the device is not able to connect to the Sprint cellular network itself, allowing customers to use their phones at home and at work in signal blackspots.
Sprint claims 53.9M subscribers, 5.6M smartphone sales
Sprint's latest quarterly results show it has suffered a loss of $1.04 billion, an improvement on last year's $1.32 billion loss, under its second quarter of ownership by SoftBank. Revenue from the carrier enjoyed a year-on-year increase from $9 billion to $9.14 billion in the fourth quarter, also up from its third-quarter results, giving it a full-year revenue of $35.5 billion.
Obama initiative valued at about $750 million
US President Barack Obama is today announcing commitments from several US corporations towards connecting more students to high-speed Internet, says the Associated Press. In all, about $750 million has been pledged; Apple is offering $100 million in iPads, computers, and other tools, while Verizon is providing the same amount in straight cash and in-kind contributions. AT&T and Sprint are offering free Internet access; Microsoft is promising copies of Windows at discounted rates, and 12 million free copies of Microsoft Office.
KitKat update for Android starts North American roll-out
Owners of the HTC One in Canada have started to receive the Android 4.2.2 update to their devices, despite it only entering carrier testing late last week. At the same time as Canada's rollout, the Android KitKat update for Sprint subscribers has been made available to download, though as a "customer initiated request" rather than a pushed update.
Four firms singled out for supporting educational high-speed Internet deployment
[Updated with Apple statement] As part of his State of the Union address Tuesday evening, President Barack Obama thanked four tech firms -- including Apple, Microsoft, Verizon and Sprint -- for their involvement and support of his and the FCC's ConnectED high-tech initiative, which aims to level the playing field for poorer districts by providing high-speed Internet access to all of America's schools and students. Obama described the participation as a "down payment" on connecting schools and students over the next three years.
ZTE Optik 2 3G tablet available online through Sprint
Sprint has revealed the 3G tablet ZTE Optik 2, now available online for purchase. The tablet has a 7-inch touchscreen display, and runs Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean. Featuring a 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 1GB RAM and 8GB of storage, the Optik 2 possesses a rear-facing 5-megapixel camera with auto-focus, video recording and flash, and a front-facing camera that enables video chat.
Chrome for iOS to add malware protection to mobile version
Google has announced its latest update of Chrome for iOS, featuring Safe Browsing malware protection akin to what is available for the desktop application. Chrome can now provide warnings when the user is about to visit a potentially dangerous site.
Easy Pay launched same week as Sprint shutters One Up plans
Sprint has launched a new offer that allows customers to upgrade mid-contract, just days after shuttering its existing One Up plans. Billed as a "limited time" offer, Easy Pay will let existing eligible Sprint subscribers upgrade to a new phone, with an initial down payment for the handset accompanied 24 monthly payments for the remainder of the device's cost.
Boost Mobile to offer Moto G, its first Motorola product since 2011
Boost Mobile, the pre-paid Sprint imprint, has announced the release of Motorola's Moto G through its nationwide retail stores and online. The first Motorola product offered by Boost Mobile since 2011, the 3G budget smartphone has a 4.5-inch HD screen made with scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass, and possesses a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core processor.
Sprint customers redirected from One Up to Framily plans
Sprint has withdrawn its One Up early upgrade plan in the United States, less than four months after it launched. The plan, which competed against similar offerings from T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T, was retired on the 9th of January, allowed customers to pay for a device over 24 monthly installments, with the option of allowing devices to be traded in 12 months into the contract and replaced by a new device.
Framily plan puts cost per person on sliding scale
Sprint has made several announcements, beginning with the introduction of its "Framily" plan. The offer -- which becomes available January 10th -- lets up to 10 people, not necessarily relatives, join a group in which each extra person joining lowers the cost for everyone else. For a single person the fee is $55 per month for 1GB of data and unlimited talk and text. Each additional subscriber lowers the cost by $5 a month, although that ceases after the seventh customer, at which stage each person is paying $25.
Softbank's Son said to approach banks for funding.
Sprint appears to be actively moving toward making a bid for T-Mobile next year, as Masayoshi Son – head of Softbank, which bought Sprint this year – is said to be courting banks to finance a potential acquisition. This according to Bloomberg, which cited sources familiar with Son's plans in saying that he is looking for roughly $20 billion to finance a T-Mobile buy. Son is said to have consulted with six banks, including Deutsche Bank AG, JPMorgan Chase, Credit Suisse, Mizuho Bank, and Goldman Sachs.
Report claims discussions occurring between Dish, Deutsche Telekom
Dish Network is still considering an attempt to acquire T-Mobile sometime next year, according to a report. Despite its failure to secure Sprint in the last year, the satellite TV service is still looking towards owning a carrier and offering cellular service, with the potential acquisition attempt seemingly setting up Dish for another battle with Softbank.
Home broadband service will use 2.5GHz Sprint LTE spectrum
Dish is working with Sprint to develop a fixed wireless home broadband service for areas underserved by normal wire-based broadband, the company has announced. Using Sprint's 4G LTE network, the service will use the 2.5GHz bands Sprint acquired from Clearwire, with Dish installing either an indoor or ruggedized outdoor router with high-gain antennas at the customer's location.
AT&T signs deal with EE for 4G roaming in UK, will offer similar connection in early 2014
AT&T has signed a deal with Everything Everywhere in the United Kingdom, allowing the US carrier's subscribers access to the 4G network when visiting, in a similar deal to one between AT&T and Rogers in Canada. Though the pricing of the deal were not disclosed, Pocket Lint reports that EE customers will be able to get 4G speeds from AT&T's network in the US in the first half of 2014.
Number three carrier could gobble up number four
Sprint is working toward a bid to purchase T-Mobile, according to a new report in The Wall Street Journal. The United States' third-largest wireless carrier is reportedly considering offering more than $20 billion for T-Mobile, which sits in fourth place but has been reinvigorated by a number of disruptive "UNcarrier" offerings. Those offerings have given T-Mobile a boost even as Sprint appears to have languished, with drops in subscriber totals and abysmal customer satisfaction ratings.
Technology allows multiplexing of LTE bands, faster downloads
Sprint announced it will begin delivery of the Samsung Galaxy S4 with the enhanced LTE Sprint Spark to its sales channels in the next few weeks. Sprint Spark allows tri-band devices, like the the S4, to support active hands-off mode between 800MHz, 1.9GHz and 2.5GHz, and provide data session continuity as the devices move between spectrum bands.
Cross-carrier stolen phone database will connect with international versions
Work on a national stolen phone database covering AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless handsets has been completed, according to an announcement from CTIA. The wireless association revealed that the multi-carrier database has been implemented before its November 30th deadline, one which it hopes to connect to overseas carriers to protect against thefts worldwide.
Supplies finally catching up to demand
Roughly 90 percent of iPhone 5s models are back in stock at US Apple Stores, according to data collected by Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster. Breaking figures down by carrier, the two biggest US providers -- AT&T and Verizon -- are showing 99 and 98 percent availability, respectively. The ratio shrinks to 72 percent for Sprint; unmentioned are figures for T-Mobile or SIM-free models.
Sprint now lowest rated carrier for satisfaction
Sprint, the United States' third-largest wireless carrier, came in last among the major carriers in the newest Consumer Reports survey of customer satisfaction. The Consumer Reports National Research Center polled 58,399 subscribers, and their responses indicated a precipitous drop for Sprint from last year, when it placed second among the major carriers. The overall leader among the major carriers was Verizon, which saw high marks for both data service and some aspects of customer support.
Will soon support older iPhones
Sprint-based wireless provider FreedomPop has announced that people with an existing Sprint phone can now activate a device on its service. The company offers extremely low-cost data plans, including a free tier with 500MB of data, 500 text messages, and 200 voice minutes. To get access, though, people previously had to pay $99 for an HTC Evo Design, a phone which is now largely obsolete.
Best Buy, Sprint deal provides free talk, text, data to student subscribers
Sprint has started a promotion for students buying any new smartphones in the carrier's range over the holiday shopping period. Customers buying a device under the My Way Student promotion through Best Buy will receive up to 12 months of free cellular service, which the company states will save students up to $70 per month in costs.
Price of Moto X lowered on carriers after Moto G launch
Following the launch of the low-cost Moto G, a number of carriers in the United States have started to lower their prices for the Moto X. While Republic Wireless offers the device off-contract, versions as part of a two-year commitment have received price cuts, with one offer seemingly being priced at $0.01.
Curved smartphone will supposedly hit American carriers
LG's curving G Flex smartphone will not be limited to its native South Korea for distribution, according to a new rumor. Reliable mobile industry leaker @evleaks tweeted on Wednesday that the new phone with a novel form factor has been "confirmed" to be bound for AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. No dates have been announced for the curved smartphone's arrival, but given @evleaks' history of pronouncements, it may be some time in the near future.
Moto X customization now on all major carriers
As many expected, the Moto Maker Moto X customization feature has now expanded from AT&T to include all four major American carriers. The Moto X site now shows Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile as carrier options, along with AT&T. The expansion of the feature to at least Verizon was anticipated by many, as the carrier accidentally leaked a page showing off the Motorola flagship and saying it could be customized. That page, though, was quickly taken down, and the feature was put back under wraps until its proper launch today.
Customized Moto X said to reach T-Mobile today, Sprint on 11th
Customized versions of the Moto X could be heading to the other carriers in the near future, according to reports. Leaked images said to be from Sprint allegedly show that the Moto Maker system will be available to customers in the near future, while another rumor claims that T-Mobile will also be receiving access to it soon.
System uses Sprint Wireless network for telephony
Sprint is deploying a system to make it simpler to cut the cord on traditional landlines. The new system, the Sprint Phone Connect System 1, offers homeowners and small business customers two cordless phones for $50 with a new line or eligible upgrade and two-year service agreement. When bundled with the Sprint Phone Connect plan, customers get unlimited local and domestic long-distance calling while on the Sprint network for $20 per month.
Karma will add Sprint LTE to service, expanding coverage to 230 cities
Pay-as-you-go mobile Wi-Fi hotspot provider Karma is adding 4G LTE connectivity to its service. Using the Sprint 4G LTE network, customers will be able to use the shareable hotspot in more than 230 US cities once it is launched in the first half of 2014, expanding from its existing WiMAX-based coverage of 80 cities. Though the current hotspot will not be compatible with LTE network, Karma will be offering "steep discounts" on the replacement LTE device when it ships.
iPhone support still largely quiet
Ting -- an MNVO carrier launched just last year, and based on the Sprint network -- is now supporting the iPhone 4 and 4S, a report claims. Ting, Apple, and Sprint are said to have signed a deal for the arrangement, which is described as a "beta" in which Ting has to prove that it can support iPhone customers, and hold up Apple's brand reputation, partly through screening for lost or stolen devices showing up on its network. Sources say that Ting is "scared to make Sprint nervous," and that "Sprint is terrified to make Apple nervous," given that Sprint has a deal to sell the iPhone while Ting doesn't. Being able to sell the iPhone often involves strict demands from Apple, including minimum marketing budgets and unit purchases.
Offering available to four phones, five markets at launch
Telecom carrier Sprint has announced its new high-speed "Spark" wireless data service, bridging 800MHz, 1.9GHz, and 2.5GHz data bands. Boasting initial peak speed of 60Mbps, Sprint claims that compatible phones will eventually reach 1Gbps speed as the technology matures.
Sprint loses 313,000 customers, sells 1.4M iPhones in quarter
Sprint's first full-quarter earnings report after the completion of SoftBank's takeover and the acquisition of Clearwire gives it good news and bad news in equal measure, with the carrier's revenues rising to $7.3 billion compared to the $7.2 billion in the previous quarter. Operating losses at the company have shrunk to $398 million, an improvement on last quarter's $874 million loss, though it is still a greater loss than the $231 million in the same period last year.
Sprint 4G LTE network now covers 230 markets
Sprint on Tuesday announced the expansion of its 4G LTE service to 45 new markets across the United States. The addition of the new markets means that Sprint's 4G LTE service now covers 230 markets. In addition to adding 4G LTE in new markets, Sprint made a sizable expansion of its enhanced 3G service, improving signal strength, coverage, and call quality.
Smaller GS4 variant to hit Sprint, AT&T, Verizon
Samsung fans that are looking for a smaller smartphone experience will be able to purchase the Galaxy S4 mini on one of four major American carriers beginning in November. The 4.3-inch handset will be available on AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and USCellular. Samsung has not announced specific launch dates for the device on each carrier.
AT&T retains top spot among US carriers
Apple and the iPhone have topped JD Power's smartphone satisfaction study for the 10th time in five years, according to a newly-released chart. With a score of 856, the company beats out rivals like Nokia (840), Samsung (839), and and HTC (829). AT&T remains the US carrier with the most overall customer satisfaction, garnering a score of 843; trailing behind are Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. Among iPhone users, though, Verizon is the top carrier.
S5 said to be rushed to market
Several Samsung leaks have pointed to alleged launch details for the company's current Galaxy S4 Mini handset and next-generation S5 flagship. Amid reports claiming Galaxy S4 sales have failed to meet internal goals, a report from the Korean site Naver suggests the Galaxy S5 is being hurried onto the market with an anticipated unveiling as early as January.
Black Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 due on Sprint in time for holidays
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 is heading to Sprint at the end of this week, While it is not the first carrier to offer the tablet on its network, it hopes to encourage users to join its network or gain second lines, by undercutting AT&T's $100 price to $50, when bought alongside a newline on a two-year agreement, and with an appropriate data plan.
HTC One gains Android 4.3 on Sprint, Verizon and AT&T to follow
Owners of the HTC One on Sprint in the United States will now be able to upgrade their device to Android 4.3. The operating system, having already appeared on unlocked versions, is said by Android Beat to be heading to other US carriers such as AT&T and Verizon by the end of October, at roughly the same time as updates for french carrier SFR's customers.
Sprint shipping Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Gear on October 4th
Sprint has joined AT&T and T-Mobile in offering the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and the Galaxy Gear smartwatch to its customers. Both will be available from the carrier starting from October 4th, with the Galaxy Note 3 priced at $350 with a two-year contract, as well as under Sprint's new One Up early-upgrade program. The Galaxy Gear, available separately, will cost $300.