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CONFIRMED: Sprint targeting April 15th for Galaxy Nexus launch

S4GRU

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by Robert Herron

Sprint 4G Rollout Updates

Saturday, March 17, 2012 - 4:09 AM MDT

 

There have been a lot of rumors and guessing about Sprint's launch of the Galaxy Nexus. Some folks guessed dates that already have passed by. Some others were guessing it would be July 1st or later. However, lately, most reasonably intelligent people who follow this stuff closely have settled on April 15th. And they would be right!

 

Sprint has set April 15th as the targeted launch date of the Galaxy Nexus

 

S4GRU.com recently received a tip from a Sprint source from within their Product Development division who confirmed the Galaxy Nexus expected launch date. Sprint internally is holding the April 15, 2012 schedule date for its management of the GNex program. However, the 15th is on a Sunday. That seems like a highly unlikely date to start offering the device in stores. It is much more likely that Sprint will start selling the Galaxy Nexus on Friday the 13th, Saturday the 14th, or possibly even the following weekend.

 

Sprint has a Galaxy Nexus contest that ends on April 14th and is also running several promotions on WiMax devices that end on April 14th and there abouts. So there have been many people who have reasonably concluded that April 15th was likely the targeted launch date for the new Galaxy Nexus. This turned out to be pretty good deductions.

 

Other interesting points

 

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Sprint will be taking delivery of their GNex's from Samsung with LTE turned off. Don't worry, the LTE is still capable. It just will not be on by default like many Verizon devices. When you boot up your Sprint Galaxy Nexus it is going to go into 3G mode. You will then be able to toggle into WiFi, 3G or 4G LTE. This is largely because at launch, the Sprint 4G LTE network will not be mature enough to support a 4G LTE always-on connection. Sprint will likely have less than 200 LTE sites live nationwide when the GNex goes on sale.

 

It is anticipated that Sprint will offer sometime in June the ability for the Galaxy Nexus to go into LTE Self Discovery mode, where the device will be able to search for a LTE signal on it is own, and turn LTE off itself automatically if it cannot connect to LTE 1900. This would be a pretty desirable setting. Keeping a LTE signal when at all possible, but minimizing the battery drain of just leaving the LTE on all the time. This will be particularly important during the phase while Sprint is in the process of adding service in your area. Self discovery mode is likely to be added via an OTA.

 

Another aspect of the Galaxy Nexus is that it fully supports eHRPD. This is the protocol established to allow 3G EVDO to seamlessly handoff to 4G LTE. Back and forth. This will be especially helpful in travelling in and out of LTE service while it is under deployment. The eHRPD will be a welcome improvement over the handoff failures that customers often complained about between 3G EVDO and 4G WiMax. Let's hope that Sprint's eHRPD is more successful than Verizon's. Which is often one of the culprits heard blamed for Verizon's LTE outages that keep occurring.

 

We will be bringing you more articles this weekend about Sprint LTE devices due in the next few months. Stay tuned!

 

EDIT: Pardon my ignorance, but I guess it is quite common for Sprint to release devices on Sundays. So maybe Sprint will actually release on Sunday, April 15th? Thanks to all our readers who brought this Sprint trivia to my attention!

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Galaxy Nexus teardown photo courtesy of ifixit.com

 

See also our LG Viper launch story, here: http://s4gru.com/index.php?/blog/1/entry-118-lg-viper-to-see-launch-on-april-15th-alongside-the-galaxy-nexus/

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Robert, you forgot to tell people that the iPad is dropping on Sprint at about the same time :)

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Can't Wait! I'm nervous for the eHRPD. I don't want to end up like Verizon and have an outage every month or so.

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Good news!

 

SIM'less LTE????

 

I would guess the SIM's are there, but perhaps just not user accessible.

 

April 15 makes alot of sense because lots of those day one HTC EVO 4G people become eligible for upgrades on April 1.

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Don't fear eHRPD. When they have an authentication issue or LTE outage-- it's that gateway that is an issue. The phone looks for eHRPD as a fallback and within 30 seconds or so it will switch over to EVDO instead. Good old EVDO still works on the phone, and in the tower you have essentially two different networks (gateways): one set that is LTE / eHRPD with the other set EVDO/1x/CDMA. eHRPD is just EVDO air interface tied into the LTE gateway IP network. There is nothing to fear but fear itself!

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I hope Sprint is using sim cards for LTE phones. I don't want to let Verizon's outages be the reason to be different than the rest of the wireless industry like they always seem to do. I am tired of Sprint doing that.

 

I am curious if MetroPCS uses sim cards for their LTE service. If so then Sprint has no reason not to implement sim cards. Sprint cannot afford to experiment with sim cardless LTE service with Network Vision.

 

Robert, any news on the LG Viper? Is that going to be released any time soon?

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Eric...stay tuned. I will be working all weekend long!

 

Robert

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I hope Sprint is using sim cards for LTE phones. I don't want to let Verizon's outages be the reason to be different than the rest of the wireless industry like they always seem to do. I am tired of Sprint doing that.I am curious if MetroPCS uses sim cards for their LTE service. If so then Sprint has no reason not to implement sim cards. Sprint cannot afford to experiment with sim cardless LTE service with Network Vision.Robert, any news on the LG Viper? Is that going to be released any time soon?

 

 

MetroPCS does use SIM cards for their LTE. I'm in the new/used phone resell/refurbishing business and have a few Metro 4G phones we're having issues selling. The issue with them is the previous customer kept their last 4G SIM card, and MetroPCS requires them to activate the phones as a used phone. Metro does not provide the customer any SIM card unless they buy the phone directly from them or have the SIM card previously used in that phone. The SIM cards are also not available for sale on ebay or any other website for that matter.

 

It is a disappointment that MetroPCS does this as it could lead to customers leaving due to such a restriction on their services. Verizon, as far as I know, does not offer SIM cards to customers either, but their SIM cards can be found and purchased on eBay as I have done so in the past.

 

I don't mind Sprint following the SIM card LTE service, as long as its either not removable, or they are available for the consumer in the "aftermarket" so they may purchase a replacement phone for a lower price on ebay/craigslist as opposed to paying full retail price in the store.

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Thanks for your background Vanakatherock. And welcome to S4GRU!

 

Robert

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You don't think Sprint would release a phone on a Sunday?

 

The Kyocera Echo was released Sunday, April 17, 2011.

The Nexus S 4G was released Sunday, May 8, 2011.

The Samsung Replenish was released Sunday, May 8, 2011.

The Motorola XPRT was released on Sunday, June 5, 2011.

The Motorola Titanium was released Sunday, July 24, 2011.

The Motorola Photon 4G was released on Sunday, July 31, 2011.

The Samsung Conquer 4G was released on Sunday, August 21, 2011.

The LG Marquee was released Sunday, October 2, 2011.

The EVO Design 4G was released on Sunday, October 23, 2011.

The Samsung Transform Ultra was released on Sunday, November 13, 2011.

The ZTE Fury was released Sunday, March 11, 2012.

 

The EVO 3D, Epic 4G Touch, Motorola Admiral and iPhone 4S were the only phones Sprint released on a Friday last year.

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Zachary...I have received several PM's, Tweets and emails saying that. I stand corrected! :)

 

I guess it adds validity to the claim. Also, I am writing another article this weekend about a device that releases on 6/10. That also happens to be a Sunday! Stay tuned...

 

Robert

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MetroPCS does use SIM cards for their LTE. I'm in the new/used phone resell/refurbishing business and have a few Metro 4G phones we're having issues selling. The issue with them is the previous customer kept their last 4G SIM card, and MetroPCS requires them to activate the phones as a used phone. Metro does not provide the customer any SIM card unless they buy the phone directly from them or have the SIM card previously used in that phone. The SIM cards are also not available for sale on ebay or any other website for that matter.It is a disappointment that MetroPCS does this as it could lead to customers leaving due to such a restriction on their services. Verizon, as far as I know, does not offer SIM cards to customers either, but their SIM cards can be found and purchased on eBay as I have done so in the past.I don't mind Sprint following the SIM card LTE service, as long as its either not removable, or they are available for the consumer in the "aftermarket" so they may purchase a replacement phone for a lower price on ebay/craigslist as opposed to paying full retail price in the store.

When you sign up a new line of service or first move to a 4G device, Verizon gives you a SIM card. After that, when you buy a phone, you only get the phone-- you "activate" the new phone by taking your SIM out of your old phone and putting it into the new one. You'll only get a different SIM if yours is broken somehow or lost. People moving from older mini-SIMs (used in HTC phones & older droids) to newer micro-SIM phones (GNex, RAZR, RAZR MAXX, Droid 4) can request a new SIM if they don't want to clip their existing SIM to use.

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I tested my Driod RaZR MAXX on eHRPD after turning off the LTE radio and I get 2.5 megabits down during the middle of the day here in NYC. I am keeping my EVO with Sprint to preserve the unlimited data plan, but if Sprint get rid of it I will be done with them. With Verizon you get what you pay for.

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Zachary...I have received several PM's, Tweets and emails saying that. I stand corrected! :)I guess it adds validity to the claim. Also, I am writing another article this weekend about a device that releases on 6/10. That also happens to be a Sunday! Stay tuned...Robert

 

Is it an htc device?

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I tested my Driod RaZR MAXX on eHRPD after turning off the LTE radio and I get 2.5 megabits down during the middle of the day here in NYC. I am keeping my EVO with Sprint to preserve the unlimited data plan, but if Sprint get rid of it I will be done with them. With Verizon you get what you pay for.

 

Perhaps, but VerizonNYC is not as nifty of a screen name. :P

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Verizon, as far as I know, does not offer SIM cards to customers either, but their SIM cards can be found and purchased on eBay as I have done so in the past.

 

You can get a replacement VZW SIM card for free at any corporate Verizon store.

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I tested my Driod RaZR MAXX on eHRPD after turning off the LTE radio and I get 2.5 megabits down during the middle of the day here in NYC. I am keeping my EVO with Sprint to preserve the unlimited data plan, but if Sprint get rid of it I will be done with them. With Verizon you get what you pay for.

That's typical VZW eHRPD/EVDO performance I see too. LTE has improved lately-- was averaging 25/13 mpbs last month. Now averaging 33/15 mbps. No complaints here! Sprint here runs about 200 kbps if you're lucky. The pings on Sprint's 3G are close to the downloads (kbps) on VZW 3G here, and vice-versa.

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Perhaps, but VerizonNYC is not as nifty of a screen name. :P

 

No really, but I am losing my faith with Sprint a little bit with their unreliable network. I gotta say that Verizon LTE put ATT LTE to shame here in NYC even though AT&T was launched three months ago.

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"Also, I am writing another article this weekend about a device that releases on 6/10"

 

 

Please let it be the Galaxy Note :)

 

TS

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I myself was off by that 5 in the date. lol Though t it was April 1 but its 15th, Tax day. lol Either way, glad to see it finally coming to Sprint.

Good work getting the scoop.

 

TS

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"Also, I am writing another article this weekend about a device that releases on 6/10"Please let it be the Galaxy Note :)TS

 

I will say this, if Robert is teasing us over the lg viper then I am gonna be pissed. LOL.

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I will say this, if Robert is teasing us over the lg viper then I am gonna be pissed. LOL.

The LG Viper was approved by the FCC back on January 9. It should've been made available before the Galaxy Nexus, but all manufacturers have different factory schedules. Apple doesn't submit its new iPhones for approval generally until the day of release to prevent any pre-release info getting out. They run all the tests and hold for the FCC filing until launch day.

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