US number-three Sprint has rolled out its LTE network in 15 markets as part of its Network Vision project. The markets include six cities in Georgia, including Atlanta, seven in Texas, including Houston and Dallas, as well as Kansas City and St Joseph in Missouri.
The company plans to expand its LTE coverage in the coming months and expects to have “largely completed” the implementation of the new network across the US by the end of 2013.
Network Vision is Sprint's strategy to cope with growing voice and data demand by building new 3G and 4G networks across the US, covering 250 million people.
As a result of the work, Sprint said customers should see stronger signal, fewer dropped calls, faster data speeds and expanded coverage. “This new network is performing extremely well and customers should find it consistent, reliable and really fast,” said Sprint senior VP for Network, Bob Azzi.
US market-leader Verizon Wireless already offers LTE in more than 300 US cities, while AT&T’s LTE network is live in more than 40 cities. “Verizon and AT&T have a head start in LTE, but hopefully we will close the gap pretty soon,” Sprint CEO Dan Hesse told Bloomberg in June. “We will be pushing hard to get more markets launched as soon as we possibly can.”
Sprint has been offering WiMAX technology – which it also calls 4G – since 2008 but this is the first time the operator has implemented LTE technology.