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The Sprint markets of Memphis & Minnesota are slated to begin Network Vision/LTE in the 2nd Half of 2012

Posted by S4GRU, in Author: Robert Herron 25 March 2012 · 18,563 views

Sprint Network Vision LTE Exclusive Ericsson Samsung Minneapolis Minnesota Memphis Tennessee
The Sprint markets of Memphis & Minnesota are slated to begin Network Vision/LTE in the 2nd Half of 2012 by Robert Herron
Sprint 4G Rollout Updates

Sunday, March 25, 2012 - 1:29 AM MDT



From the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes to the gates of Graceland!  We are now prepared to tell you about two more Round Two markets in Sprint's Network Vision/LTE deployment plans for 2012...

Memphis and Minnesota!  

Sprint's Memphis market

Sprint's Network Vision vendor Ericsson is scheduled to begin the Memphis market early in the Second Round. Ericsson and their subcontractors are scheduled to begin mobilization into Memphis in June 2012 with the first sites starting to come live before 4th of July weekend.

Sprint's Memphis market covers Western Tennessee, Northeastern Arkansas, the little boot of Missouri and Northern Mississippi.  Including the cities of Memphis, Jackson, Union City and Dyersburg in Tennessee; Jonesboro, Paragould, Blytheville and Forrest City in Arkansas; Tupelo, Columbus, Starkville, Oxford, and Greenwood in Mississippi.  It is bordered by the Arkansas market to the west, the Mississippi market to the south, Alabama and Nashville markets to the east and the Missouri and West Kentucky markets to the north.  The Memphis market will have 333 sites in total after Network Vision is complete.

Posted Image

Sprint's Memphis Market. All 330+ Network Vision sites are shown for the Memphis market in this map. Click on image to enlarge.


Sprint's Minnesota market

Sprint's Network Vision vendor Samsung is scheduled to begin the Minnesota market later in the Second Round. Sammy and their bands of merry men are scheduled to begin to start work late in the Fall in Minnesota.  This seems like a less than ideal time to start work in a place like the Upper Midwest.  But if you live in this market, you have to welcome this over having to wait until Spring thaw.  Although the weather this past winter would have been ideal for Winter work!

Sprint's Minnesota market is East Central, Northeast and Southeast Minnesota, as well as Western Wisconsin.  It includes Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, Duluth, St. Cloud, Mankato, Austin, Winona, Grand Rapids and Brainerd in Minnesota; Eau Claire, La Crosse and Superior in Wisconsin.  It is bordered by the Dakotas market to the west, North Wisconsin market to the east and Central Iowa market to the south.  A total of 807 Network Vision sites.

Posted Image

Sprint's Minnesota Market. All of the approximately 800+ Network Vision sites are shown for the Minnesota market in this map. Click on image to enlarge.


Although we know the scheduled start date...

It's exciting that we can tell you the start dates of the Memphis and Minnesota markets.  However, we cannot guarantee at this time that things will not change.  Sprint has not officially announced these markets and for good reason.  

Sprint has three different OEM vendors, with several different crews in many markets at once. There could be final permitting and design delays, some vendors and/or crews will work at different speeds, weather issues and any number of unforeseen circumstances to complicate matters even further.

The work hasn't started and they are keeping their options open.  Sprint has said they may elect to slow down Network Vision in future quarters if cash flow becomes strained.  And this could affect these markets.

All of these reasons explain why Sprint likely elected not to announce these markets themselves at this time.  But we know you don't want to wait for Sprint to tell you!  With these caveats understood, we are releasing the information about these markets as it exists to date.

Posted Image

Photo of  Memphis skyline courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.


We won't stop digging for you!

Sprint 4G Rollout Updates will continue to scour through the data and gather deployment information for your use. It is our intent to provide at a minimum, all the Sprint markets that will likely begin Network Vision/LTE upgrades in 2012. And we intend to release the remaining unnamed markets in the next week. We will not likely announce communities slated for 2013, because the dates we hold for 2013 markets appear very tentative and subject to change. With many variables to sort out between now and 2013. Sprint could make significant shifts in deployment plans based on dynamic need change, funding, market permitting difficulties, etc.

With the release of Memphis and Minnesota markets today, that brings the total of Network Vision markets announced to 39. We have have a thread in our forums where we are keeping track of all the markets announced by Sprint and S4GRU.com.  Click on this link here to view the Network Vision Market Running List.

Stay tuned to Sprint 4G Rollout Updates. On Wednesday we will be releasing our Final two Round Two markets for Sprint Network Vision and LTE deployment. We will be talking about it in a few hours in advance in a S4GRU Live Chat at 9:30 PM Mountain Time on Tuesday evening. Come join us!

Posted ImagePhoto of  Minneapolis skyline courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.


Information about the source: The information for all of our Network Vision information has been freely provided by several sources close to the Network Vision program who choose to remain anonymous. No source information will be released to protect anonymity.

Special thanks to S4GRU Member digiblur for creating the Memphis and Minnesota market maps! Thank you!




I really should have made this chat tonight! Thanks for this great information. The whole state too! WOW. More reason to visit home more often.
im telling you phoenix and tucson/yuma are next i just know it. i can feel it in my gut (eww that was nasty, but kinda true lol).if im wrong then you guys can call me a idiot. but i wont be, cause im never wrong. hahahahahahaha
Awesome! Glad to see that Minnesota will be getting Network Vision in later 2012! I was thinking that Minnesota would probably be an early 2013 market; I'm glad to see that I was wrong.

Robert, do you have any idea if and how Sprint will notify customers within the various markets that Network Vision work in their area is complete? I would think that once Network Vision is complete within a particular market, Sprint would somehow want to advertise the fact. Any idea if they have plans to do so? Or do I just have to keep doing speed tests to see if work in my area is done?
Wow! It looks like North Mississippi along I-22 is going straight from 1x to LTE! It will leave those folks wondering what the 3G buzz was all about the past decade.
(Pleasantly) surprised Memphis is getting in on the action so early, especially after getting passed by during the WiMAX rollout. SEC fans in particular should be very happy if they get Oxford and Starkville done before fall comes around.
Awesome! Minnesota will definately benefit from a speed upgrade. My speed tests were brutal.
Are all the little gray circles on the map receiving 4g LtE? Or are some of them going be upgraded 3g that allows for a 5mbps download but no 4g?

I'm on the western outskirts of Minnesota upgrades and they're definately needed. Speed tests last night gave 48kbps down with 900ms ping. It feels like I'm living in the past with dial-up.

Are all the little gray circles on the map receiving 4g LtE? Or are some of them going be upgraded 3g that allows for a 5mbps download but no 4g? I'm on the western outskirts of Minnesota upgrades and they're definately needed. Speed tests last night gave 48kbps down with 900ms ping. It feels like I'm living in the past with dial-up.

These gray circles are towers and they will be getting 4G LTE, 3G backhaul upgrade (3G should be around 1mbps) and 1xAdvanced for enhanced range and capacity for voice calls. Once the tower is upgraded, there should be no issue with speed on LTE or 3G. There should also be a little better range than what it had before. The gray circles are just a set radius from the tower, not necessarily signifying holes in the coverage.
It almost looks like there is a LTE tower in the boundary waters canoe area... too bad there are no plug ins anywhere near there. LOL

Robert, do you have any idea if and how Sprint will notify customers within the various markets that Network Vision work in their area is complete? I would think that once Network Vision is complete within a particular market, Sprint would somehow want to advertise the fact. Any idea if they have plans to do so? Or do I just have to keep doing speed tests to see if work in my area is done?


Ryan...Sprint will announce the market "Live" when it reaches 50% completion. They probably will only announce 100% complete in a Press Release after the fact, kind of like how they are announcing 3G band-aid fixes via PR's. LTE will be usable at each site once it is upgraded. So early LTE device holders will be discovering LTE service frequently in markets prior to official "live" market announcements and market completion.

Wow! It looks like North Mississippi along I-22 is going straight from 1x to LTE! It will leave those folks wondering what the 3G buzz was all about the past decade.


There are quite a few areas that will be going from 1x to LTE. We have members in Norfolk, NE and Niles, MI who are still on 1x. And the day their sites get EVDO for the first time will be the same time they get LTE. Part of me wants to laugh, however, I doubt customers in those areas think it is funny.

(Pleasantly) surprised Memphis is getting in on the action so early, especially after getting passed by during the WiMAX rollout. SEC fans in particular should be very happy if they get Oxford and Starkville done before fall comes around.


Yeah, Sprint is not follwoing Clearwire's WiMax deployment strategy. It is completely different this time around.

It almost looks like there is a LTE tower in the boundary waters canoe area... too bad there are no plug ins anywhere near there. LOL


Apparently, beggars can indeed be choosers! :hah:

Are all the little gray circles on the map receiving 4g LtE? Or are some of them going be upgraded 3g that allows for a 5mbps download but no 4g? I'm on the western outskirts of Minnesota upgrades and they're definately needed. Speed tests last night gave 48kbps down with 900ms ping. It feels like I'm living in the past with dial-up.


Yes, all these areas are getting 4G LTE service on 1900. Only about 80% of them will get 4G LTE service on 800 in 2013, though. Sprint 3G EVDO will not be capable of 5Mbps speeds, even after Network Vision. The maximum real world ideal conditions 3G speeds that Sprint network will ever achieve is around 2.5Mbps. But realistic 3G speeds after NV will be more in the 1Mbps to 1.6Mbps range in most areas. Spectrum constrained markets will be more of a challenge for Sprint.

LTE speeds will be highly variable from 4Mbps to 25Mbps, highly dependent on signal strength.

Robert
Nice to see La Crosse and Eau Claire are getting LTE. Now announce something for Eastern Wisconsin.

just curious, why is it the Minnesota market and not the Minneapolis market? Seems all of the other market announcements are cities, not states.


There is no rhyme or reason to Sprint's market naming convention. Highly inconsistent.

Robert
As far as the reasoning behind markets, I know from working there it was in some cases due to how they originally set things up when Sprint initially launched cell phone service back in the 90s: some markets were (and still are) affiliates, and some were not. That was a question we always asked as employees and that's what we were told, although it still didn't really explain the reasoning. Probably things started out that way and they just stuck with it ever since, I'm guessing.
Looks like OKC/Oklahoma still has one shot at being announced tomorrow, but I won't hold my breath! Maybe they'll throw some more band aids at us as whatever good the last round of band aid fixes did is already largely gone.

just curious, why is it the Minnesota market and not the Minneapolis market? Seems all of the other market announcements are cities, not states.


Maybe Sprint thinks the same as all the sports teams... I always wondered why they were all called Minnesota _____. Maybe they figure that everything that isn't the Minneapolis Metro is wilderness.
The sports team naming, at least, is due to not wanting to take a side in the Minneapolis-St. Paul municipal rivalry; same reason why I-35 splits into "W" and "E" rather than one "side" getting I-35 and the other getting I-235 or something. A bit like the "Texas Rangers" being halfway between Dallas and Fort Worth.
You stated the Minnesota market is bordered by the Dakotas Market. I assume that means cities like Fargo and Grand forks ND that border Minnesota are not going to be part of this one?

You stated the Minnesota market is bordered by the Dakotas Market. I assume that means cities like Fargo and Grand forks ND that border Minnesota are not going to be part of this one?


That is correct. In fact, all of Western Minnesota is also in the Dakotas market. You can check out this market map: http://s4gru.com/ind...et-map-dakotas/
So if we can see that Sprint is adding a tower in my area does that mean they are updating NV in the area at the same time. Or is that a totally different part?

So if we can see that Sprint is adding a tower in my area does that mean they are updating NV in the area at the same time. Or is that a totally different part?


So far, the adds done before NV crews arrive have been with legacy equipment. However, Memphis is so close to starting you would think they would use NV equipment on any new installs.

If you get a chance to go over to the new tower and take some pictures of the antenna panels and the base equipment, I can tell you if the site is being built with NV equipment.

Robert
Ok I will go and take some pictures now and update this with some pictures.
Robert I sent them to your Twitter account. Let me know if you want me to email them to you. Please tell me some good news. The last 3 days Sprint 3G in Minnesapolis and St. Paul have been the worst I have seen. I hope that is because they are updating the network.

Robert I sent them to your Twitter account. Let me know if you want me to email them to you. Please tell me some good news. The last 3 days Sprint 3G in Minnesapolis and St. Paul have been the worst I have seen. I hope that is because they are updating the network.


I've looked through all the photos. I don't see any RRU's on the rack that appears to be Sprint's up on the tower. I do see some RRU's, but the appear to be on AT&T panels. Also, the equipment cabinets that appear to be Sprints look like legacy cabinets.

In the one shot where you see the cabinets on the right almost behind the AT&T equipment building, were there additional cabinets behind the building that you could see?

Robert

So far, the adds done before NV crews arrive have been with legacy equipment. However, Memphis is so close to starting you would think they would use NV equipment on any new installs.


The so close to starting part sounds like music to my ears for memphis. Maybe in a week or so i might ride around and see if i notice any work being done on some towers if i can get close enough

I've looked through all the photos. I don't see any RRU's on the rack that appears to be Sprint's up on the tower. I do see some RRU's, but the appear to be on AT&T panels. Also, the equipment cabinets that appear to be Sprints look like legacy cabinets.In the one shot where you see the cabinets on the right almost behind the AT&T equipment building, were there additional cabinets behind the building that you could see?Robert



Yea I think there was another cabinets but it is in a wet spot and didnt want to try to get around to the other side. If you serach Ham Lake MN and look a little north of 18 you will see the new tower. I have a feeling they used the old system. when I was at the tower the best I got was 1 mg download. :( Has anyone have problems with 3g in the minneapolis area? The last few days I cant get speeds to be better then .300kb down. Other then being next to the tower.

Nice to see La Crosse and Eau Claire are getting LTE. Now announce something for Eastern Wisconsin.

what about central Wisconsin like in the Wausau area.