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This was a conversation I saw Det_Conan_Kudo on twitter having with some people so I started a petition about it on change.org. I'd be curious what sort of discussion this would kindle here...

 

 

We all know how quickly technology changes in this day and age. Sprint-Nextel uses a technology that has essentially dead ended, its voice (x1) and older data network (3G-EvDo). This means that unlike GSM carriers, such as T-Mobile they can’t easily ramp up speeds and are more dependent on LTE.

 

Let's face it; phones aren't really phones anymore. They're data devices for accessing the Internet and everything connected to it, that happen to also make calls. Carriers are racing to gobble up spectrum for the tidal wave of data that is being used. Even companies not associate with the cellular industry seem to know this, as Dish Network, a satellite TV operate, has made a move to challenge SoftBank for ownership of Sprint-Nextel.

 

So why would anyone want to be tied to a technology that has no update path? The major handset manufacturers already have the mounting difficult task of supporting more and more LTE bands, meaning that there will be more one off devices that are tied to a specific vendor as the phones are locked down.

 

A big examples of how this affects handset choices is the compromises that have been made with the Google Nexus program they sell it completely unsubsidized (full price) to the public and without a contract on the Google Play store. You're free to use it on any carrier you choose, both here in the U.S, on AT&T or T-Mobile,. and overseas. The Nexus 4, sells for as little as $299, and by current standards, is among the best, most powerful handsets on the market. However Sprint and Verizon, only have the older version of the Nexus, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, not only that they have only recently received the newest version of Android, Jelly Bean. With Google I/O around the corner no doubt they will lag by several months, if they are even updated.

 

T-Mobile, last year after the failed AT&T takeover, made public plans of their new “Challenger Strategy.” In a nutshell their new strategy was a, from the ground up reorganizing of their spectrum. They did this to better align with the fact more Carriers use 1900 MHz for UTMS than their less common AWS (1700/2100 Mhz). By doing this T-Mobile has better aligned itself to provide more handset selection to its customers, as now any AT&T phone will be able to work without giving up network performance. For Sprint, it would also mean they would have a much more capable 3G network and could move more data faster and more easily add more performance via software upgrades much like T-Mobile did in its early 3G days moving from 3.6 Mbps > 7.2 Mbps > 21 Mbps > 42 Mbps in very short order. PC Magazine summed it up nicely, in their annual State-of-the-Cellular Networks http://bit.ly/KOkLpE to quote from them directly

 

T-Mobile's HSPA+ 42 is the 4G dark horse. It's really fast, covers a lot of the country, and is inexpensive. We found it to be faster than Verizon LTE for downloads in 11 cities (T-Mobile didn't win, though, because Verizon had much faster upload speeds.) Outside cities, where T-Mobile has coverage, it blew away other 3G networks.

 

Here is where this petition comes in UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) technology is global and used by the vast majority of Carriers around the world, it has a future as well as scale. Sprint, as part of its “Network Vision” upgrades to its network installed technology agonistic SDR equipment (Software Defined Radios). This means they can dynamically move from one technology to another with minimal costs, as the backbone and backhaul could be reused. Moving to UMTS can provide Sprint better handset flexibility, more flexible options for use of its spectrum; allow it to move more data faster, as well as better align itself as a better competitor of the big two, AT&T and Verizon.

 

SoftBank Corp. has already expressed his willingness to do away with the stagnant norms of the U.S. cellular market. So here's your chance: sign this petition to tell SoftBank Corp. & Sprint-Nextel Corp. to move to UTMS based technology and create an affordable way for consumers to purchase their devices. I've been a long-time Sprint-Nextel supporter; I don't want them choosing technologies that limit their ability to cause true disruption and make AT&T and Verizon actually compete.

 

Help us Masayoshi Son & Dan Hesse, your our only hope…

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CDMA is not going to die soon. Sprint has just started marketing a 1xRTT only M2M solution in responce to Verizon and AT&T shutting down their 2G (or as AJ would say lower end 3G) technologies.

 

GSM UMTS in the form of HSPA sounds nice from a standards perspective, 5 years ago.

 

We are in a transitional period with Sprint moving to LTE, (the newest UMTS tech), for all of its data demands and in plurality with CDMA a solution to its voice needs.

 

What would be nice to see is perhaps Google making a device that operates on LTE for Sprint and competitive carriers with LTE band 25, 26, 12 and 4 as well as CDMA and HSPA radios that will work for Sprint, T-Mobile, US Cellular, C-Spire, and even AT&T out of the box.

 

One topic that I feel hasn't been adequately addressed is the anti-competitive and anti-consumer nature of CDMA carriers only allowing whitelisted devices onto their networks. It has never made sense to me that Sprint refuses to activate a Verizon or US Cellular device and vice versa.

 

I feel the FCC or whoever has the power to regulate this stuff should ban all carrier locks and pass new rules preventing carriers from creating barriers to prevent a cellular device from passing from one carrier to another. A device shouldn't need to be unlocked, ESN cloned, flashed or any of the other now illegal BS we have to hurdle through to get a device operating on a network it's technically compatible with otherwise.

 

Sprint is not perfect and one of my beefs with them is shown most vividly in the US Cellular spectrum purchase. Current USCC customers will not be able to just continue using their compatible phones on the Sprint network because they're not Sprint devices. Thousands of devices are now almost worthless, how wasteful is that?! I think Sprint and all other CDMA carriers need a serious kick in the butt on their device policies.

 

I also think all of Sprint and Verizon's GSM compatible devices should be unlockable to be used on other GSM carriers, locking them locally is also anti-competitive.

 

Another thing. Before anyone makes the "Its a subsidized device so the carrier owns it until the end of your contract to recoup subsidy losses",

 

NO! When Sprint or any of the carriers get you the customer to sign a contract with an early termination fee, you own the device. The device is essentially a loan with repurcussions for not paying the loan which can be levied against you by collection agencies, destroying your credit.

 

Last I heard, you don't have to keep your home ordered according to what your mortgage lender preferred when he lent you the money to buy it or agree not to refinance under another lender.

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Too late... May as well go to VoLTE. There's also the problem of spectrum constrained markets, which explains why Sprint couldn't move to UMTS even if they wanted it.

 

VoLTE is close enough that it's not a big deal.

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And VoLTE is so far away...

 

Sent from my little Note2

Like I've said on multiple threads now, the pace of innovation on VoLTE is accelerating greatly. SK Telecom already has Downlink CoMP up and running and they're very close on Uplink CoMP.

 

http://www.telecoms.com/139021/cto-sk-telecom-south-korea-sdn-and-network-virtualisation-hold-great-promise-for-mobile-carriers/

 

Yes, South Korea has a higher cell density for VoLTE too. Yet, technologies to make VoLTE complete are very close to full deployment on other carriers.

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That argument is about a decade too late. Not to mention that Sprint enjoyed many benefits of their technology decision over the past decade as well so it's hardly something that's even worth discussing anymore given that they're moving to LTE for their "Next-gen" network anyway.

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I think because Sprint is putting LTE on EVERY tower that the point is moot. The only reason these legacy networks are still a priority is because 1) not everone has an LTE handset and 2) LTE is not fully deployed yet. The funny thing is that all the other carriers besides maybe T-mo are not even putting LTE on every tower, which makes them even more dependable on the legacy networks. Sprint is headed in the right direction, and because they have LTE on every tower, will make them probably less dependent on 3G than any other carrier. Although, i have had a few beers so...what do i know. :)

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There are many places where one can only receive a 1xRTT or EvDO signal due to the frequency LTE is being deployed on currently. Even when LTE is in the 800MHz range, I have been made to understand that you will have to have a better signal to have a reliable VoLTE call versus a call over the older 1x network. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but based on that I don't think CDMA is going away for a long time.

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Plain and simple, it isn't going to happen. The spectrum is not there to do so. Instead of partitioning switch to another carrier that fits your needs.

 

Sent from my little Note2

 

 

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So I guess in Houston Sprint would have to switch everyone to UMTS phones right away. :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

 

Still, if SoftBank makes such a move, I'm sure modding here would be interesting for a while. :lol:

 

I pushed for a CDMA carrier to switch to UMTS as an interim step for LTE once. It wasn't Sprint though, it was Verizon... which would have had a much better position to move than Sprint did. Plus, such a move would have caused an early collapse of the CDMA economies of scale.

 

If VZW had went to UMTS, there's a good chance that Sprint would have had to go C11.

 

(This is all my opinion and does not necessarily reflect the view of S4GRU or other moderators.)

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I am, or at least partially I use T-Mobile for my phone and Sprint for a hot spot. I was just curious to see the feedback, but I guess Sprint's EV-DO must use a lot less spectrum than I am imagining. And really as far as speeds go minus video, >1 Mbps is generally ideal. I do wish perhaps that CDMA in generally was not so handset locked down, ie making it easier to bring other phones, I had previously been with Verizon, and had Sprint allowed me to bring my OG Droid, I would have in a heart beat for example. At least a while back my buddy used to get ~2.6 Mbps down on EV-DO in Franklin TN. Though that was a while ago...so YMMV

 

It's 1.5 MHz blocks. UMTS uses 5 MHz blocks. That would have been the key problem in spectrum constrained markets. They would have had to switch everyone in one fell swoop, and for a while, run THREE seperate networks (Legacy, Network Vision as UMTS, and Nextel). It would have been a mess.

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Wow those are rather narrow channels, I suppose all things considered its rather impressive they move so much data on such thin swaths of spectrum. Also isn't Nextel's iDEN literally going to be shut down officially in like a month, I seem to remember June/July 2013?

 

Yes. ~14 mhz across most of the nation except for certain areas in the southeast where Solinco is not sharing the spectrum with sprint. In that area, Sprint has to utilize a 3x3 setup for LTE in addition to a different channel for CDMA 1xA. Rest of the nation, except for the exclusion zones around the borders, will have just enough spectrum for one 5x5 LTE setup alongside a CDMA 1xA V setup in addition to the guard bands.

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Wow those are rather narrow channels, I suppose all things considered its rather impressive they move so much data on such thin swaths of spectrum. Also isn't Nextel's iDEN literally going to be shut down officially in like a month, I seem to remember June/July 2013?

 

June 30.

 

Also, a little history lesson here...

 

http://www.ericssonh...g/A-new-fight-/

 

Edit: Then again, I see this slide, and I begin to wonder...

 

1. Is SoftBank going to add CDMA to Japanese handsets? Or

2. Is Masayoshi Son crazy enough to cause the mother of all S4GRU meltdowns?

 

ScreenShot2013-05-06at32428AM_zpsa9479283.png

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I see this slide, and I begin to wonder...

 

1. Is SoftBank going to add CDMA to Japanese handsets? Or

2. Is Masayoshi Son crazy enough to cause the mother of all S4GRU meltdowns?

 

ScreenShot2013-05-06at32428AM_zpsa9479283.png

 

While there is some precedent for phones that might work/have worked on both networks (Galaxy Note II, iPhone 5/4s, Photon Q, Photon 4G, etc...) for them to exercise their combined buying power on the level of any particular handset, I look at mentions of "economies of scale" to mean that together they will have the critical mass to sustain the adoption, improvement, and integration of TD-LTE modem chips and equipment, regardless of the existing voice network, as it is of prime interest to their future machinations. "Economies of scale" is an advantage WiMax fleetingly possessed since it was finished before LTE, but quickly flipped the other way-round

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The Canadian CDMA carriers for example have realized this years ago and I believe have all made the switch to UMTS (though they continue to support their CDMA networks to some degree).

 

At this stage in the game however, it is simply too late for Sprint to take this up. The narrow nature of 1x channels are a good, flexible voice solution for Sprint until VoLTE comes around. LTE is the future. The investment required doesn't make sense at this point.

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You know what I dont love? Tmobile roaming coverage in my state and all the states I border. A move to less efficient umts would not only take time and cost a huge portion of the users handset fees , it would reduce sprints geographic roaming and send all of their reciprocal roaming agreements up in smoke. I have zero interest in relying on the att for rural coverage

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They really should just move to 100% LTE and just have some 1X for old phone's. There is no point to moving to UMTS now.

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This was a conversation I saw Det_Conan_Kudo on twitter having with some people so I started a petition about it on change.org. I'd be curious what sort of discussion this would kindle here...

 

Okay, we need to get a few things straight.

 

First, call a spade a spade. UMTS is W-CDMA and should be referred to as such. GSM fans tend to hate that because it more accurately shows that their 3G airlink is really just another variation on Qualcomm's intellectual property that underlies cdmaOne and CDMA2000.

 

Second, Neal Gompa is a friend, but his W-CDMA advocacy goes a bit too far. His opinions on this matter should be taken with a grain of salt, as his agenda colors his assertions about what is practical or possible.

 

Third, even one W-CDMA carrier requires a total of 10 MHz (5 MHz FDD or 5 MHz x 5 MHz) of available spectrum. This spectrum outlay is one reason why AT&T and T-Mobile have for years lagged so far behind in their W-CDMA overlay compared to VZW and Sprint in their EV-DO overlay. And it is also the reason why T-Mobile has had to aggregate excessive amounts of spectrum to support running W-CDMA in parallel on both AWS 2100+1700 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz while also deploying LTE in AWS 2100+1700 MHz.

 

Fourth, a CDMA2000 carrier -- either CDMA1X or EV-DO -- requires a total of only 2.5 MHz (1.25 MHz FDD or 1.25 MHz x 1.25 MHz) of available spectrum. This much smaller spectrum outlay allows Sprint, for example, to deploy CDMA1X in SMR 800 MHz and to continue to operate in markets where it has historically held 20 MHz or less of PCS 1900 MHz spectrum. Running W-CDMA in those markets would require an impractical overnight flash cut from CDMA2000 to W-CDMA.

 

AJ

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The Canadian CDMA carriers for example have realized this years ago and I believe have all made the switch to UMTS (though they continue to support their CDMA networks to some degree).

 

The Canadian CDMA2000 carriers -- Bell and Telus -- commenced a W-CDMA overlay for a couple of reasons. They wanted more roaming revenue from the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. And because wireless consolidation is even worse in Canada than it is in the US, Bell and Telus have spectrum to burn. In the end, the W-CDMA overlay was chickenshit move that looks pretty myopic now, as LTE quickly supplants W-CDMA.

 

AJ

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The Canadian CDMA2000 carriers -- Bell and Telus -- commenced a W-CDMA overlay for a couple of reasons. They wanted more roaming revenue from the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. And because wireless consolidation is even worse in Canada than it is in the US, Bell and Telus have spectrum to burn. In the end, the W-CDMA overlay was chickenshit move that looks pretty myopic now, as LTE quickly supplants W-CDMA.

 

AJ

 

I wouldn't call it "myopic", considering their consumers could get pretty good UMTS coverage out of the gate at 21 Mbps while EV-DO was limited to 3.1 Mbps. Then you consider that AWS was their only deployment option for LTE more or less in Canada due to the much longer period of time it took to clear broadcast out of 700 MHz up there, then it doesn't look like such a bad move, all things considered. Sure LTE may supplant UMTS in the long run, but as many people have accurately pointed out, VoLTE is a ways away, even now. When the triopoly up there gets LTE frequencies, they'll be in a really good position to launch LTE over the lower frequencies quickly.

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Please note that S4GRU does not support the petition referenced in the Original Post and does not endorse nor advocate a move to WCDMA as a bridge to LTE. It makes no sense for Sprint to do so from a business standpoint. And the spectrum issues make it beyond reasonable.

 

The billions wasted on something temporary would be foolhardy and would rival the Nextel purchase decision. Those billions could be spent on much better things like 800 expansion, Network Expansion, Small Cell deployment, network management and capacity upgrades, etc.

 

It just doesn't make sense for all the reasons explained here. It's just a machination of WCDMA fans and those who want to swap SIM cards. If you want to be able to swap SIM cards, Sprint is capable of making that switch within the current network architecture if they so choose. I suppose you could petition that.

 

Robert via Nexus 7 with Tapatalk HD

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