Nokia’s first WiMAX device – the N810 Internet Tablet – this week became available for pre-order from a number of US online retailers for between US$400-500. Unveiled at CTIA Wireless 2008 last month, the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturer said at the time that the device will specifically support Sprint’s ‘Xohm’ WiMAX service, and will be available in stores in areas where that service is available, or through Nokia’s direct sales. The as-yet-unreleased device features a 4.1 inch colour screen, keyboard, built-in webcam and 2GB of memory.
Last month, Sprint Nextel disappointed the WiMAX community with news that it will delay the commercial launch of its Xohm network. The company was scheduled to launch the service in April. Sprint did not specify a new date but analysts believe this summer is a more likely timescale. The delay is said to be largely because of backhaul problems with the new network. Sprint continues to run trial networks in Chicago and Baltimore-Washington. These networks, however, will remain employee test beds for the moment.