Tag - Xohm
Sprint on Thursday reported continued losses in income and customers in its results for the last quarter of 2008. The cell carrier says it shifted to a $257 million loss from a $325 million profit the year before and has dropped below 50 million cellphone subscribers for the first time in years, falling from 53.8 million users in December 2007 to 49.3 million by the end of the past year. This was also down 1.3 million users from the summer.
Wireless provider Sprint Nextel will offer handsets that can switch from the existing CDMA network to the WiMAX mobile broadband network currently being built up across the United States by Sprint's recent partner, Clearwire. Apart from the handsets, Sprint will carry other WiMAX products and services, including the first hybrid CDMA/mobile WiMAX modem. All will be branded as Sprint 4G, replacing the existing Xohm brand name for the existing high-speed mobile broadband gear.
Clearwire today said its recently completed deal with Sprint for WiMAX will use the "Clear" name on its own side of the network rather than use Sprint's Xohm naming scheme. Worth about $14.5 billion, the agreement will effectively replace Xohm on Clearwire's portion of the network rather than see the two provide a united naming scheme.
A merger between telecommunications companies Sprint and Clearwire announced back in May could be completed before year's end, as Clearwire's shareholders have approved the deal today, according to a Thursday report. Earlier this month, the FCC approved the merger as well, bringing the $14.6 billion venture one step closer to completion. The new company, also called Clearwire, will work on developing a mobile network based on WiMAX technology that promises wireless data transfer rates faster than any current network, approaching wired broadband speeds.
HTC on Wednesday rounded out the last of its major touchscreen phone introductions with its highest-performing device yet. The MAX 4G is the production version of the T8290 and shares the 3.8-inch, 800x480 screen of the Touch HD but adds a WiMAX connection for 4G-level Internet access in the multi-megabit range. A GSM connection is still built in to make conventional phone calls.
The FCC late yesterday approved Sprint's deal with Clearwire for a national WiMAX network. The deal will allow the two to spread an effectively unified 4G wireless Internet service across the US that should cover as many as 140 million users by the end of 2010. FCC Commissioners, including Chairman Kevin Martin, describe the approval in historic terms and suggest it will create a genuine new competitor for high-speed Internet access in the US.
Next year will bring devices that have two competing 4G data formats at once, a note from ABI Research. Company principal analyst Philip Solis explains that multiple carriers have expressed interest in supporting both Long Term Evolution (LTE) and WiMAX on the same chipset, letting them support either standard depending on the provider and region. The move would let carriers such as KDDI and Vodafone serve both their own services, which will prefer LTE, without the cost of building a second device for a WiMAX network in another country or a related provider.
Carrier AT&T and PC builder Lenovo say they have collaborated on a project meant to drive down the cost of 3G broadband on notebooks. Buyers of Lenovo notebooks in the ThinkPad T, X and SL series will get a free 30 days of AT&T's DataConnect service, if they sign up for a two-year contract; more critically, models with the necessary Ericsson module will not cost any more than a regular version, which the companies claim will save as much as $150 per computer. The arrangement is being targeted mainly at small- to medium-sized businesses.
Nokia in a low-key move has started shipping the N810 WiMAX Edition in the US, giving Sprint's new Xohm network its first handheld device. Following a long delay from its April launch, the tablet is Nokia's first with long-range wireless and should have broadband-level Internet speeds anywhere in Baltimore and future cities that will get Xohm. Sprint estimates 2Mbps to 4Mbps downstream, which should allow full video streaming, VoIP, and other services sometimes too demanding for 3G.
Apple is giving both its iPods and MacBooks wide-area wireless in South Korea, a statement reads. The American company has signed a memorandum of understanding with major telecoms provider KT Corp to bundle KT's WiBro (WiMAX in Korea) mobile broadband service with Apple's portable music players and notebooks. Neither firm is specific on details, though the iPod touch and similar devices would require built-in hardware to support the feature where MacBooks could use USB or ExpressCard adapters depending on the model.