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Yeehaw! Austin is moving up to the First Round of Sprint Network Vision/LTE Deployment with some sites already live!

S4GRU

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Robert Herron

Sprint 4G Rollout Update

Sunday, March 25, 2012 - 10:30 AM MDT

 

BREAKING NEWS and a S4GRU.com EXCLUSIVE...We have some good news for y'all in the Heart of the Lone Star State! Sprint's Austin market is now confirmed to be in the First Round of Network Vision/LTE deployment.

 

Austin was originally slated to be in the beginning of the Second Round of deployment. However, since the original Network Vision schedules were compiled back in October 2011, Austin has apparently been moved up. Ericsson is the Network Vision OEM Contractor that oversees the Austin market. Ericsson has created a 4G LTE FIT (field testing area) within the Austin market just south of the city of Waco.

 

It now appears that Ericsson and its subcontractors are rolling right out of this 4G LTE FIT and right into full scale deployment. In the latest Network Vision schedules obtained, Ericsson will be deploying a total of 19 sites within the FIT area. Starting in April they will continue deployment steadily across the market.

 

Phased for your LTE enjoyment

 

The Austin market deployment is now made up of two phases. The first phase is scheduled to run into July 2012. It's at the end of Phase 1 that Sprint will come out and announce that the Austin market is live! Phase 1 includes approximately 50% of all the sites that will receive Network Vision and LTE upgrades. Phase 2 will continue immediately after the conclusion of Phase 1 until the entire markets completes around the end of October.

gallery_1_1_63222.jpgLive Network Vision sites - Austin market. There are six sites currently live in the Austin market in the Waco 4G LTE FIT.

 

There are already six sites live in the Waco FIT area (shown in the map above). These are reported to have full Network Vision upgrades including 4G LTE already operating. Granted, that LTE is unusable to Sprint customers at the moment, as there currently aren't any Sprint 4G LTE devices on the market. Although we have reported that will change soon with the releases of the Galaxy Nexus and LG Viper that are anticipated on April 15th.

 

You won't need to wait until launch to enjoy some early LTE goodness

 

Even though the formal launch of the Austin market is not anticipated until July 2012, Sprint is planning to allow all of its customers who do buy LTE devices the ability to use the LTE service prior to market launch, should they find themselves in an area with LTE coverage. Sprint plans to instruct its sales and customer service channels that customers may discover LTE in their market prior to launch, but it is not "optimized" for use until formal launch announcement. However they will be encouraged to use their LTE, but with the caveat that LTE services in their area are not supported until formal launch. In other words, don't call and complain to them if it goes down!

 

In the Austin market, there is anticipated to be 35 sites live when LTE devices are expected to go on sale. And there will be over 200 sites live when the market is formally launched in June. So there will be several months of unofficial LTE sites coming live across the market. If you live in the Austin market and are one of the early LTE device buyers, you will need to scan for a LTE signal every couple of days. Because that 4G LTE signal could just jump out at you at any moment! Unofficially, of course! ;)

 

 

800px-WacoBridge02.jpg

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

 

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.

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Wow great news. I just hope that more markets jump into the first round. Seems like Ericcson and Alcatel Lucent are rocking with Network Vision progress with the majority of the first round markets but Samsung is lagging behind. Hopefully Samsung can make up ground and have more first round markets.

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Am I supposed to feel less screwed for buying into the whole 4G WiMax thing I've paid a fortune for over the past two years but could rarely use?

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Am I supposed to feel less screwed for buying into the whole 4G WiMax thing I've paid a fortune for over the past two years but could rarely use?

 

Whether you feel screwed or not, is not anything we can help you with. We are not an official Sprint site. We are a conglomeration of wireless dorks who are Sprint customers who often receive inside information. We report that out to you all. You can do with it whatever you please.

 

Robert

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Good to see the actual progress no matter where it is. :)

 

(Too bad I no longer live in Texas.)

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Wow, must be good to be a Texan. I wish Ericsson was in my neighborhood they are kicking butt. But alas, I have Samsung doing my region. The slowest provider of NV rollouts so far although it's market is the largest but hasn't the population centers that Ericsson and A/L have. They don't even have to do the upper mid-west down to Wyoming since Sprint has no native coverage in that vast swath of territory. Now I now what the Phoenix people feel like.

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Whether you feel screwed or not, is not anything we can help you with. We are not an official Sprint site. We are a conglomeration of wireless dorks who are Sprint customers who often receive inside information. We report that out to you all. You can do with it whatever you please.Robert

 

I understand this, I've also found that industries tend to watch their fan sites, and other forums they don't host themselves while ignoring / censoring the outcries on their own forums. (To Sprints credit they usually don't censor their forums this way, but many other corporations do) Outcry on Slashdot is usually one of the best fixes for any tech industry wrong that needs righting, and I've personally sparked responses and even changes within at least two large industry players by making well informed statements that can be backed up, without angry name calling.

 

I went with Sprint because a colleague highly recommended it to get the Evo 4G. He lives in an area with great WiMax coverage and works inside the loop, which also has great WiMax coverage. To his/their credit only recently has someone come up with a mobile that beats the Evo 4G in every department, that's two years at the top. Sure some phones beat it in one or two areas before then but none all around until the Galaxy S 2 came out.

 

I on the other hand live about a mile south of excellent WiMax coverage. If I'm spending time on Bay Area or NASA Parkway I too can get great coverage. I live less than a mile South of NASA Parkway and tend to head South when I need something instead of to the more crowded North. If I stand outside where I live sometimes I can get a weak WiMax signal. If I go any further South the 3G coverage becomes so weak my battery drains at nearly three times the normal rate just by having data polling on and if I decide to upload a picture while in Galveston I can use up 10% of my charge just for trying. At least text and voice coverage is superb, Sprints data leaves something to be desired. If the rumored iPhone 5 exclusive happens there's going to be a lot of upset hipsters unless they really fix the issues with the LTE upgrades.

 

So far Sprint has been great about a few things. They don't care about my custom firmware, you seem to actually gain a level of respect with some of the store employees I won't single out, if they know you're running it. They allow me to use Google Voice integration which I totally love. Despite having custom firmware I actually do pay the $30 extra a month for tethering, and when I'm between Texas City and Conroe it works great even if I can only use it at 3G speeds most of the time. In their core areas 3G is awesome! On the outskirts the backhaul connection bites, even when I get a great 3G lock on data is slow, this is most of Louisiana and anything more than a couple of miles from major white collar employers.

 

Sprint needs to hear these things in the open, like here, and not in the shadows where it can be easily covered up. One of my coworkers has T-Mobile with LTE and he has awesome coverage nearly everywhere. Just a few years ago T-Mobile was one of the crappiest large carriers there was, at least in this area. I'm encouraging Sprint to follow their lead by posting as I have. My contract is up in a few months. If I can walk into the Sprint store off of 646 and I-45 (even further South from the white collar coverage zone than I live) and they have an Android phone cooler than my Evo with LTE coverage that works in the store and the surrounding area I'm sticking with them. If not I'm going to T-Mobile.

 

My biggest complaint about Sprint outside of the "protection level of coverage" they offer is my phone would be next to useless had I not put custom firmware on it. The apps that were pre-packaged and could not be removed or disabled ate batteries at a phenomenal rate. Even after rooting the phone I had difficulty removing these apps (it's easier now that newer ROMs are out).

 

As long as you root your phone and live in a dense white collar area Sprint is the best phone company around as it stands. I want to encourage them to expand on that.

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One of my coworkers has T-Mobile with LTE and he has awesome coverage nearly everywhere.

 

Not to be a wiseguy, but T-Mobile has not even started upgrading their network to LTE. Your coworker might have HSPA+ which they have marketed as 4G but it is an entirely different technology.

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We all know about Sprint's past. Our site is not a catalog of complaints about Sprint's past, but a site of information and discussion about Sprint's future. There are many places around the internet that are well suited to host Sprint complaints.

 

They are well aware of their problems, and Sprint does indeed read our site. In fact, this site is full of information about the things Sprint is planning and doing to fix their issues to the best of their ability with the resources they have. They have heard from people like you loud and clear, and they get it.

 

Our site is not well suited for those who are not focused on Sprint's future. We can understand if a forum for Sprint fans that brings original internal sourced information is not for you. We are working diligently to bring an upbeat and positive place for Sprint customers on the web who are interested in solutions for the future, delivered in a constructive format. Our members are counting on me to maintain that environment. If this sounds like a place for you, I encourage you to hang around here and get to know our members in our forums.

 

Best Regards,

Robert Herron

S4GRU.com

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Am I supposed to feel less screwed for buying into the whole 4G WiMax thing I've paid a fortune for over the past two years but could rarely use?

 

Yes, you should feel less screwed. I've paid the same prices as you and NEVER once gotten a WiMax signal. I take that back - vacation in Orlando. I thought (hoped, prayed) Sprint might start the LTE rollout in larger cities that had no WiMax coverage. Alas, no love yet for Louisville, KY. If they don't get to us until 2013, I might be on my 3rd "4G" device and two full years worth of "premium data plan" before ever basking in the warm glow of LTE goodness.

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According to the sites being activated recently it appears that they are in Waco, not Austin. Is it possible that Austin really isn't on the first round?

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According to the sites being activated recently it appears that they are in Waco, not Austin. Is it possible that Austin really isn't on the first round?

 

Waco is in Sprint's Austin market. Also, I have the dates now for all the sites in the first two rounds. Austin is indeed in the first round. The first sites in the Austin market (around Waco) are in a 4G LTE FIT. The main part of the rollout in the Austin market should start ramping up in April.

 

Robert

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Any updates on LTE going live in Austin itself? I love my Galaxy Nexus, but I'm getting a little tired of the slow 3G data connection :-(.

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Any updates on LTE going live in Austin itself? I love my Galaxy Nexus, but I'm getting a little tired of the slow 3G data connection :-(.

 

The are more LTE sites that went live last week in the Waco area of the Austin market. June is went sites will start to go live in the Austin Metro area.

 

Robert

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Thanks Robert. Appreciate the reply. Any info on specific locations of the planned LTE sites in Austin Metro area? I'm particularly interested in the SW region of Austin (78735).

 

Thanks again.

 

-Matt

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Thanks Robert. Appreciate the reply. Any info on specific locations of the planned LTE sites in Austin Metro area? I'm particularly interested in the SW region of Austin (78735).Thanks again.-Matt

 

Matt:

 

Network Vision is not being scheduled neighborhood by neighborhood, but rather site by site. So one site in your neighborhood will likely be one month, another the month before, and the other one two months later. It's very difficult for me to give neighborhood schedule assessments. Sorry :(

 

Robert

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Understood. I did just notice that the antenna tower near my house (DA04X030) has recently become TWO towers. :) Maybe a good sign?

 

Thanks.

-Matt

 

open?id=0Bz4Zxhxo6ByBbW1KRm5fbWgzcG8

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Understood. I did just notice that the antenna tower near my house (DA04X030) has recently become TWO towers. :) Maybe a good sign?Thanks.-Mattopen?id=0Bz4Zxhxo6ByBbW1KRm5fbWgzcG8

 

Looks like September for that site, according to the schedule now.

 

Robert

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Looks like September for that site, according to the schedule now.Robert

 

Arrrgh. I was hoping for June. Thanks for the info.

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so robert/s4gru,

 

I cant seem to find the interactive map for the austin market for LTE, i saw a NV map but nothing with lte on it. is it live/up to date?

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so robert/s4gru, I cant seem to find the interactive map for the austin market for LTE, i saw a NV map but nothing with lte on it. is it live/up to date?

 

This map shows all the live Network Vision sites in the country, including the ones in the Austin market. Currently, the only sites live in the Austin market are in the Waco area. There will be more that are scheduled to start coming live in June in the Austin metro area.

 

Each live NV site map is marked with which NV technology is currently live, 3G, 800 and 4G.

 

Robert

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This map shows all the live Network Vision sites in the country, including the ones in the Austin market. Currently, the only sites live in the Austin market are in the Waco area. There will be more that are scheduled to start coming live in June in the Austin metro area.Each live NV site map is marked with which NV technology is currently live, 3G, 800 and 4G.Robert

 

 

thanks for the response, so no map for *planned* 4G sites (at least for austin)? only maps for completed NV sites (and their type of upgrade) TIA

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