Friday, February 3, 2012

Sprint Unveils iDen Decommissioning Sites with 4G Rollout Underway

Sprint has activated a new Nextel iDEN network page that lets the user input a zip code and then see a map of iDEN network towers in the area and which are slated for decommissioning.

The first towers being removed from the iDEN network are considered "excess capacity" sites, which were deployed years ago when a much bigger iDEN network was anticipated. To keep the iDEN service in operation for now, other towers in the area will be retuned to cover the lost territory.

Sprint plans to decommission the first iDEN towers in New Orleans, once Mardi Gras is over at the end of the month.
  • In October 2011, Sprint confirmed that as part of Network Vision, it will be decommissioning of over 25,000 iDEN sites.

  • In December 2011, Sprint deployed the first multi-mode base station as part of its Network Vision architecture. The new base station, which has been activated in Branchburg, New Jersey, is radiating multiple spectrum bands (1.9GHz and 800MHz) and powering both 1x and EVDO services. It is fully integrated with the existing network and performing as expected. Under its Network Vision plan, Sprint intends to repurpose some of its 800MHz spectrum for Sprint 3G service, thereby enhancing coverage, particularly the in-building experience for customers. Augmenting its 1.9GHz footprint with 800MHz, Sprint expects its CDMA coverage density will increase throughout the country. More density generally equates to fewer dropped calls and a more seamless network experience for customers.

Network World: Reed Hundt on Why Spectrum Bill is Terrible

Network World published an interview with former Federal Communications Commission chairman Reed Hundt, who has characterized spectrum auction legislation under consideration by the U.S. House of Representatives as "the single worst telecom bill" he's seen. Two major issues of concern for Hundt are: (1) the idea that future spectrum auctions should not have any bidding eligibility rules set by the FCC, and (2) that unlicensed spectrum should not be a priority for the FCC.

Forbes: More Smartphone Shipments than PCs

An article from Forbes notes that sales of smartphones outpaced PCs for the first time in 2011. According to figures cited from Canalys, 487.7 million smartphones were shipped in 2011 versus 414.6 million PCs, which include tablet PCs.