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CNN looks at WiMax, Sprint Evo 4G

The HTC Evo 4G is the first Android smartphone to take advantage of Sprint's WiMax 4G network, and CNN Money has taken a look at the technology behind the next-generation of high-speed wireless data and to play with the phone a bit. Take a look after the break. [CNN Money] Thanks, Nextellian!


Reader comments

CNN takes a look at WiMax, Evo 4G


Amazing how small the infrastructure is compared to 3g. I wonder how this compares to LTE infrastructure changes needed. Knowing nothing about the technology, it sure looks like they could put the changes in fairly quickly compared to 3g.

Something they didn't mention about the 4G infrastructure in the story was the mesh nature of the towers. The two microwave dishes are actually pointed at two other 4G towers. Each tower has two paths back to the back-haul, making it very resilient.

Also, not all of that mess on top of the tower belongs to 4G. Most of that garbage is 3G and 1x stuff. I can't wait until it is all retired and those massively ugly towers are taken down.

with as small as those 4G boxes are, i feel like sprint should be pumping them out to all cities and the even to large suburban areas.

That has always surprised me about CDMA hardware - it takes up so much space compared to gsm/edge (building full of hardware vs. gsm which I've seen literally integrated into the base of the antenna/tower mounted).

Can anyone from the cell industry comment on that?

Yeah all things considered, that box is no bigger then the stoplight boxes placed at every intersection... Considering how small and cheap it is to deploy 4G as opposed to 3G, I really hope to see 4G in my area before the end of the year!

I herby command you to release this device, release it. I herby command you to release this device by June 2010. I herby command you to sell this device for $150.00 w/ 2 year contract. I herby command you to give an option of selling for $50.00 with 3 and/or 4 year contract. I command it so it be done.

Guess I could just say please release it. Please,

Is saving $100 upfront really worth an extra 2 years on your contract? I can't image wanting to use a 4 year old smart phone. That would be like using a WinMo 5.0 device today.

Plus Sprint gives you a new smart phone ever year if you have a data plan.

I love how fast that Youtube video "buffered". Sprint hurry and launch 4G in NY please :P

From what I heard LTE is faster but Sprint claims they can support that fairly easy. We will see.

i have a 4g laptop card with sprint and i am highly reconsidering going back to Verizon 3g cdma until LTE. Coverage was a lot better on Verizon than Sprint, and it was a more stable internet connection.

4g peaks at times with slightly quicker speeds, but it is nowhere near as a quality network as Verizon.... Thank you for the trial Sprint, but i now know why your investors seriously do hate you.

of course as yet its not as complete a coverage or high a quality as verizon's 3G network... but its far better than Verizons 4G network!.. :)
Besides your card can default to Sprint's 3G network in areas where there is no 4G service.... and there certainly is no issues with Sprints 3G coverage or quality

Considering that 4G is just now being rolled out for TESTING in a limited area, I can see there being a bit of a problem from time to time

That's what you get for helping then TEST the new equipment

The guy starts off talking about how this is a look behind 4G networks operate and the challenges/opportunities they face.

This isn't about 4G, its about Sprint's WiMax 4G and gives nothing more than a simplistic view. It does give some oppertunites (faster speeds, smaller cell tower sites/equipment, less power to run the cell sites). But it doesn't present many challenges.

Sprint's 4G/WiMax operates at 2.5 or 2.6ghz. Since higher frequencies can't travel as far, and can't penetrate solid objects (walls!) as well, they're likely to have signal propagation issues and will need MORE TOWERS per square foot/mile/etc, than their current CDMA/EVDO network which operates at 800/1900Mhz. And will likely have in-building coverage issues because of it. More towers = more cost to build, and the hurdles of acquiring new locations for the additional towers.

That is a BIG challenge for Sprint/Clear.

AT&T, VZW and T-mobile have all agreed to LTE using the 700Mhz spectrum. Lower frequency... travels farther, penetrates walls/buildings better. So less towers needed (sprint needs about 3x more than AT&T/VZW/T-Mobile will for the same coverage their networks give).