Reports suggest that US operator Sprint Nextel has delayed a long-expected announcement that it will adopt LTE technology. The country’s third-largest carrier was expected to provide an update on its 4G plans by the middle of the year, and reports only last week suggested the announcement could be made during its quarterly results release next week (July 28). However, chief executive Dan Hesse has been quoted by numerous reports yesterday as stating that Sprint Nextel will provide “a great story this fall around 4G, and it’ll all become clear.”

It has been mooted that LTE wholesale-only operator LightSquared has signed a wide-ranging deal with Sprint, which would see the pair collaborating on the build and operation of a network – although this has not been confirmed. Any such move would be a major change in technology strategy for Sprint, which currently offers 4G services via WiMAX technology as part of its Clearwire venture.