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Jacksonville Network Vision/LTE Deployment schedule update

S4GRU

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by Robert Herron

Sprint 4G Rollout Updates

Tuesday, June 26, 2012 - 2:40 PM MDT

 

The next market in our Network Vision/LTE deployment schedule update series is the Bold New City of the South...Jacksonville. Jacksonville and Florida's First Coast has yet to be announced by Sprint, but is expected to be announced in the near future. Perhaps around the time of the first market launches.

 

The Sprint Jacksonville market encompasses all of the Sprint native coverage in Northeastern Florida and extends down to even parts of the west coast of Central Florida. This includes the Jacksonville Metro area and the Beaches, Orange Park, St. Augustine, Palatka, Gainesville, Ocala, Wildwood and down over toward Crystal River and Homosassa Springs. Sprint's Network Vision OEM Ericsson is scheduled to begin mobilizing with its subcontractors next month. Completed Network Vision sites should start coming online in August.

 

Jacksonville Market Launch

 

It was Sprint's original plan to launch markets when they reached 50% of sites converted to Network Vision. However, it has now been determined that Sprint will move up launches sooner than 50% completion in several markets. This is likely to maintain a Mid 2012 launch in markets that have already been announced. However, in an unannounced market like Jacksonville, we don't know if they will resume pushing back market launches to 50%, or if they will now settle on a 40% completion to be the new normal for market launches.

 

If Sprint waits for 50% completion to launch the Jacksonville market, it would make the launch month to be November (should the OEM stay on schedule). If they plan on a 40% market completion for launch, that would be October. You may think that 40% - 50% site completion is not enough to launch LTE service, but it would provide pretty good coverage. Even Verizon doesn't launch on all sites in a market initially. Usually less than 50%, then filling in with more and more sites every few months.

 

gallery_1_2_5819.jpg

Anticipated Sites Complete at Market Launch. According to the Network Vision schedules

that S4GRU has reviewed, if Sprint launched the market in October, these are the anticipated

sites that would likely have LTE complete at that time. This would provide fairly good LTE

coverage over many parts of the market.

 

Schedule details and the bottom line

 

We currently do not have a date that Sprint will formally "launch" LTE service in Northeast Florida. It is difficult to try to pick a date now this far out, but we will take a stab at it. In looking at the schedule as of today, it would indicate an November or December market launch (going on a 40% - 50% completion for launch). But there is no way to know if Ericsson and their subcontractors will actually hit their schedule dates this early in the deployment for this market. We will be able to gauge better after a few months of production.

 

Ericsson will only need to hit a production rate of 40 sites per month to stay on schedule. This appears to us to be an achievable rate. If properly prepared and equipped and if backhaul is ready timely, this market shouldn't have problems staying on time. But this is easy to say before they get started.

 

S4GRU has examined the schedule in great detail in this market and sees that most of the sites will be complete by March 2013. However, there may be a few sporadic sites that will linger past the completion.

 

800px-Jacksonville_Skyline_Panorama_5.jpg

Photo of Jacksonville skyline provided courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

 

NOTE: S4GRU Sponsor Members can track regular updates of

Network Vision sites completed nationwide. Completed sites are shown in an interactive Google Maps interface. Information about sponsorship can be found here: S4GRU Sponsorship

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Any updates on Central Florida, as far as Tampa/Orlando deployment goes?

 

Thanks!

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Any updates on Central Florida, as far as Tampa/Orlando deployment goes? Thanks!

 

We are publishing articles on every Round Two market. But they are being posted in order of anticipated launch date. So, the Tampa and Orlando articles will post according to their place in the schedule. But do not fret, it should be before the end of this week.

 

Robert

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Any way to get a bigger and more detailed map of this? I can't exactly tell if a tower near me is getting LTE or not.

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Any way to get a bigger and more detailed map of this? I can't exactly tell if a tower near me is getting LTE or not.

 

We do have interactive schedule maps for our Premier Sponsor members.

 

Robert

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To be hoenst, this is not all that impressive. In what I would consider the true Jacksonville metro area there are only about 23 sites. Surely that can't be approximately half the market. From looking at the map it looks like there would be no towers touched in the Southside, Intercoastal, or the Beaches and only one site in Mandarin. If anything, one would think they would hit those areas first. I mean, no LTE in St. John's Town Center (aka the temple of shopping in N. Fla) or the acres of giant corporate office parks around it? Given this I would think most locals wouldn't consider this market "launched". Hopefully Sprint has an agressive rollout schedule to complete the rest of the market.

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To be hoenst, this is not all that impressive. In what I would consider the true Jacksonville metro area there are only about 23 sites. Surely that can't be approximately half the market. From looking at the map it looks like there would be no towers touched in the Southside, Intercoastal, or the Beaches and only one site in Mandarin. If anything, one would think they would hit those areas first. I mean, no LTE in St. John's Town Center (aka the temple of shopping in N. Fla) or the acres of giant corporate office parks around it? Given this I would think most locals wouldn't consider this market "launched". Hopefully Sprint has an agressive rollout schedule to complete the rest of the market.

 

It's unfortunate that you are not impressed. However, I don't think that was Sprint's goal. You are assuming that Sprint is sitting back and choosing winners and losers...which neighborhoods and communities in the JAX market are most worthy to be served first. This is not reflective of what is going on at all.

 

Network Vision deployment order is based mostly on availability of backhaul. There are several backhaul vendors deploying several different types of backhaul solutions. Several types of AAV, terminal end microwave, microwave rings, some fiber connections. And thus, the backhaul schedule is very varied. The sites that are getting converted first are the sites that will be ready first.

 

In order for Sprint to create a deployment schedule of most worthy locations first, would mean they would have to let sites that are ready to be converted sit there and wait for more nifty neighborhoods backhaul to be done. This would be ridiculous and cause further delay. Sprint should convert every site the moment it can be, regardless of geographic location.

 

And since the whole network needs to be converted to Network Vision standards, it doesn't much make sense to try to focus on the best neighborhoods first. Sprint has chosen the best and fastest strategy that's possible. And ultimately that benefits the most people the soonest.

 

Robert

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Thanks for the clarification Robert. What you say makes sense.

 

Question: Sprint has that network enhancement site that they maintain, network.sprint.com, is what shown here related to the expected work shown on Sprint's site? It's hard to tell. It almost seems like there are two network efforts going on - the NV and what's on the sprint site.

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Thanks for the clarification Robert. What you say makes sense.Question: Sprint has that network enhancement site that they maintain, network.sprint.com, is what shown here related to the expected work shown on Sprint's site? It's hard to tell. It almost seems like there are two network efforts going on - the NV and what's on the sprint site.

 

Over at network.sprint.com, they are showing upgrades that are a part of Ericsson's National Network Management contract. Ericsson is supposed to go around and add capacity and incremental backhaul on legacy sites as a part of their contract. You are seeing this work here.

 

Network Vision is a completely different scope then this. Here at S4GRU, we only monitor Network Vision upgrades and deployment. We don't focus on the daily maintenance aspects of the Sprint Network. Hopefully this helps clarify some things.

 

Robert

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I see, thanks.

 

BTW, as part of Network Vision, supposedly Sprint is also making improvements to the 3G network. Do you know what they are doing in that respect or point me to somewhere that describes that? On Sprint's website it just talks about "a new 3G network" but gives no specifics. I wonder what are they doing? Do they mean the 800Mhz overlay? Surely they're not putting in EVDO Rev.B, are they (that would be cool :)?

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I see, thanks.BTW, as part of Network Vision, supposedly Sprint is also making improvements to the 3G network. Do you know what they are doing in that respect or point me to somewhere that describes that? On Sprint's website it just talks about "a new 3G network" but gives no specifics. I wonder what are they doing? Do they mean the 800Mhz overlay? Surely they're not putting in EVDO Rev.B, are they (that would be cool :)?

 

No EVDO-B or EVDO on 800. Sprint's 3G improvements are largely related to slightly stronger signal through using Remote Radios at the top of the tower instead of at the base station, and using new and much faster backhaul.

 

Robert

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I can't express how happy I am to see Gainesville, Fl finally getting some 4G. I just hope they arent to far behind schedule.

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I can't express how happy I am to see Gainesville, Fl finally getting some 4G. I just hope they arent to far behind schedule.

 

I am originally from Eastern Alachua County. It will be nice to have it lit up the next time I come down to visit family.

 

Robert

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I was looking at buying a htc evo 4g lte. I live in Jacksonville. Would you suggest waiting or getting it now? I have heard that 3g is pretty slow on sprint is this true?

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In my opinion, 3G in Jacksonville isn't too bad compared to other Sprint markets becuase there is reasonable 4G WiMax coverage so part of the network load is being offloaded to WiMax (for those users who have older Sprint 4G devices), thus freeing up 3G.

 

In any case, speaking from a general prespective, compared to the other carriers' 3G, Sprint's 3G is atrociously slow. However, once they get 4G LTE going, that should improve the 3G coverage for two reasons: 1. like with the WiMax situation, they'll be offloading users' data onto LTE from 3G and 2. as part of the LTE deploymnet they are also improving their 3G service.

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Hey guys I'm new to the forum. I just wanted to know how to reply is someones comment?

 

Use the quote button underneath your comment. It will then place the quote in the text box at the bottom of the page. Then you can type your response below their quote in the text box.

 

Robert

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Use the quote button underneath your comment. It will then place the quote in the text box at the bottom of the page. Then you can type your response below their quote in the text box.Robert

 

Thanks abunch Robert this is an amazing forum.

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Anyone have info on Tallahassee Market? I dont use sprint but for the last 5 years my friends have complained of terrible service calls/txt and .001 data speeds.

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Anyone have info on Tallahassee Market? I dont use sprint but for the last 5 years my friends have complained of terrible service calls/txt and .001 data speeds.

 

Tallahassee is in Sprint's Panhandle market. Work will not begin in this market until some time in 2013. Final scheduling for 2013 markets will not be completed until later this Fall.

 

Robert

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Anybody seen any work being done in the Jacksonville market ? Any pics ?

 

10/18/12, I drove almost the entire southern half of Jacksonville today and never could connect to Sprint 4G LTE. Mandarin, Westside, Downtown, Jax Beach, and Southside. Only got 3G. I guess nothing is active yet.

 

On my other phone, I have 4G Wimax, and get pretty decent speeds. OP I get 2-5mbps, Mandarin 2 mbps, and Jax Beach is awesome at 6+ mbps.

 

Can't wait for LTE. Please post if anyone has seen any work being done, or if they can connect to LTE at any tower. I heard the one by Everbank Field had LTE, but I passed about a mile or two away from it and didn't get LTE.

 

Will Sprint be turning on individual towers as they are upgraded, or wait till 40-50% and then turn on the switch?

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My 3G speeds have been pretty bad here lately, I have the Galaxy S3 and 3G is horrible. I thought they were upgrading the 3G in town? I work off of University and I95 the 3G is no more that 200k down, i live in OP and i get 150k down. It is very disheartening that the 3G service has gone down so fast. Is it because of everyone switching to the LTE devices and them bogging down the 3G network?

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Sprint has been delayed all over Florida. Sprint's subcontractors ran into issues with the EPA and USFWS over Osprey nesting. In order to prevent being fined, they pulled off all work in Florida as a precaution until after the October 1st nesting season ended. So work just started back in Orlando, Tampa, Miami/West Palm, Jacksonville and SW Florida markets just a few weeks ago.

 

Some sporadic LTE signals will start appearing probably in the next few weeks. Sprint is now working toward trying to have a launchable amount of service in most Florida markets by the end of the year.

 

Robert

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4G Speeds Faster...

I sent my Photon 4G in for repair for 2 weeks and just got it back. Ran some speed tests and got 15mbs in Mandarin, and 9mbs in Jax Bch. This is not always the case. Sometimes I'm getting the old 2-5mbs, but it seems to be consistently faster. I have also noticed the latency has gone to 80-90ms, drastically down from 150-220ms I was getting before. Again, sometimes I get the higher latency, but it is consistently faster. I don't know if this is because I wiped my phone before sending it in for service, a software upgrade sprint did, or increased network capacity. But, I have never seen this kind of speed from WIMAX.

 

One downside is that I seem to lose 4g and 3G coverage frequently, only to have it come back in a few minutes. Again, don't know if this is a qwark of the replacement/repaired phone, or work being done on the network. Anybody else noticing any changes? I still haven't seen any LTE on my other phone.

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