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Sprint exec says he is "still bullish on Apollo"

Could we see Windows Phone 8 devices on Sprint?

When it comes to Windows Phone, we've been pretty hard on Sprint in the past, and rightfully so. After testing the waters with the first-generation WP7 HTC Arrive, they have been a non-player, even going so far as to make the Arrive the poster child for their buyback program. Well, we could possibly be seeing that stubbornness come to an end with the imminent arrival of Windows Phone 8 (Apollo) later this year. Speaking at CTIA, the carrier's director of consumer acquisition, David Owens, said that he's "still bullish on Apollo." 

This is the same man, mind you, who said back in January:

"We have a Windows device in our lineup, but honestly, it hasn't done well enough for us to jump back into the fire. We told Microsoft: You guys have to go build the enthusiasm for the product."

Microsoft certainly paid heed to his word, setting off on a monstrous advertising campaign with the help of its partners, like Nokia and AT&T. Since then, we've seen huge demand for other Windows Phone handsets, like the Nokia Lumia 900. Perhaps the shifting momentum has changed Owens' mind. Or perhaps he has caught a glimpse of Mango's successor, Apollo, and liked what he saw. Owens failed to elaborate on his comment, so we'll just have to wait and see.  However, it gives us some hope that we could see an Apollo device or two in Sprint's Fall lineup.

Source: PCMag; Thanks for the tip, Vallos!

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Reader comments

Sprint exec says he is "still bullish on Apollo"

69 Comments

So what exactly does this comment mean? Guess its too much to ask for him to just say they are looking forward to releasing more handsets on the next version of the OS?

Too Little, Too late. I broke my family plan contract 3 months early and I love my Lumia 900 and AT&T LTE in my area. Sprint lacks vision, the CEO taking a pay cut is just the first small step to making them meaningful again

Me too. I don't even miss sprint. ATT network is much faster, plus they have other features that make the experience better

I was fortunate enough to live in an area where Verizon was a dead zone. Since they were unable to provide the service they were contracted to, I was able to have both my wife and my termination fee dropped. We proudly have a radar and lumia on t mobile for a fraction of the cost now.

They better conform soon. I'm seriously considering leaving Sprint for AT&T... Just don't know if I want to wait that long.

I too broke my contract with Sprint, and I told them why. I am currently enjoying my Lumia 900 on AT&T. Too bad, the Arrive was a great phone that never really got to enjoy carrier support.

I think Sprint has made some poor decisions and is little gun shy at the moment. They chose WiMax over LTE. The $10 monthly fee some if my friend's paid over there, for the slower 4g, felt like a poor investment to them. Sprint is scrambling to buy LTE towers now. They backed WebOS phones, which didn't fare to well, and then they paid 15 bil (according to rumor) for the iPhone. It sounds they're strapped for cash and bit non-committal right now.

They had to initialize a WiMax rollout. Why does nobody remember this fact? If they hadn't begun rolling out WiMax when they did, they would have lost the entire spectrum to the FCC who would have put it back on the auction block.

What are you, some kind of idiot who can't check the damn facts?
 
If that's the best retort you got, you might as well shut the hell up.

Actually, I believe that Sprint's investment in WiMax is wise. Had Clear kept expanding WiMax, Sprint would have a huge head start compare to other carriers.
Down the road, Sprint could then slowly transition from WiMax to LTE.
Instead, Sprint decided to abandone WiMax and start a new 4G network which put it back to square one.

I worked there through March. They hadn't had raises in around 2 years due to the performance of the company. They have made a ton of horrible business decisions. The entire time I was with the company, I had a Verizon phone and didn't regret it one bit. Sure, you get 100% free service, but come on. Poor, free service isn't nearly enough to make me switch from reliable, paid service.

Sprint can go kick rocks! I was grandfathered in on a pretty decent package and I still left why? Because their choice of phones SUCK!!! and im sorry but LTE for the WIN as well. Love my Lumia 900!

yep, I also just ETF'ed my sprint contract to get a Lumia 900. I'm going where the windows phones are, and it certainly not the android infested Sprint network. I still use my HTC Arrive to finish up some games where I have saved progress.

"We have a Windows device in our lineup, but honestly, it hasn't done well enough for us to jump back into the fire. We told Microsoft: You guys have to go build the enthusiasm for the product."

SEriously??

i hope MS replied with ,
* how bout you DO YOUR JOBS AND PUSH OUR PHONES!!!*
what do we pay sale reps for any ways!!!!!!!!

It seems to me Microsoft went and told them we'll build enthusiasm, with AT&T and the Nokia Lumia 900. I think the sales of the Lumia 900 on AT&T over the last few weeks has convinced the other carriers and OEMs that Windows Phone can succeed and now they are finally willing to commit serious resources to its success.

My kudos to those of you who left Sprint for greener WP pastures. Maybe they are getting a bit jealous seeing ATT actually market the devices and having success. This is the best way too make carriers take notice.

i love my HTC Arrive! I have very little desire for a new phone as this little lowly spec phone runs circles around my wifes iPhone and all my friends are envious of it! I wish they had advertised it more sure but its a great phone.

I have had Sprint for years and at the moment I can't afford the swap to Verizon. AT&T is out of the question as I refuse to be a supporter of them. But Sprint has the best prices on plans and the unlimited data is a big draw. However if their 4g service doesn't exist in Birmingham by the time my contract ends I will go to Verizon.

So Sprint needs more Windows Phones, and 4G in Birmingham and they have about a year to do it. (when my contract ends) However I'll be fine either way as like I said, I still love my Arrive.

Sprint and Verizon have the best coverage in my area. AT&T and T-Mobile are complete and utter garbage.
 
Stop spewing this nonsense. Like any carrier, the speed and coverage vary from region to region and where I live, it's quite good.

Yeah I really like my arrive.  Custom fully unlocked tango rom with tethering....can't go wrong.  Sure it has outdated specs but it still smokes most android devices out there. I get no lag and it nevers requires a reset.  I just want a bigger screen and better camera.  Hopefully sprint gets a win8 phone.  I don't want to give up my awesome SERO premium plan.  Can't beat 40 bucks a month for ulimited data, pics, text, and any mobile to any mobile.  Once they get LTE and a win8 device or two, i'll be sitting pretty with sero premium at 50 bucks a month.  How can you beat it? 

Hey, how'd you get the tango rom with tethering? I'd love to have that too. And yes, SERO is the greatest thing since sliced bread ;)

check out xda-developers site.  There are a couple of good custom roms for the arrive.  Anzar's tango rom and DFT freedom mango rom.  Both are great.  Fully unlocked and tethering.

You pay for what you get...40 bucks gets you slow data speeds,horrendous network coverage and ONE windows phone to choose from. That's no different than those pre paid services running around the backwoods of the USA.

Its a plan that was available a while back for people who knew someone working at Sprint. I think the original deal was like $30 for 400minutes, unlimited data and text or something like that.

I feel I'm getting much more than I'm paying for.  Slow data speeds?  Hardly.  In my area I get top notch 3g speeds everywhere.  Sure it's not 4g (the arrive isn't 4g capable).  In my same area, 4g speeds are consistent at 10 mbps.  That's not bad at all on 4g phones(certainly not the highest though).  Sprint coverage is excellent in the st. louis area.  I never get a dropped call.  I travel between two states in this area too.  Sprint even came in to my office building and wired up a system so that all of us can get coverage inside this huge place with no windows.  I stream music over 3g all day long.  Zero issues.  Maybe I'm not a 'power user' needing 10+ mbps download speeds but for $40 it can't be beat.

Finally! I have been hanging on to my crappy old phone which I have had since 2010, ever since windows phone first came out so I can get 2nd+ gen windows phone on sprint unlimited.

Sprint is a follower not a leader....thats why they were late getting the iPhone and Android and now they are going to be late with Windows Phone

I was with Sprint for 11 years, then left because they weren't giving any indication they were going to support Windows.
On T-Mobile now.  100x better than Sprint.

If Sprint wants me to stay as a Subscriber, it's in their best interest to offer a Third Generation Windows Phone that runs Apollo.

I'm just going to say the truth... my first cell phone was the HTC Mogul on Sprint. I moved to the Touch Pro, and then the Touch Pro 2 and then at the initial death of Windows Mobile, I decided to check out Android with the EVO. However, I *hated* Android, and my Sprint service was always lame, so I got the HTC Arrive about 4 months after its release. I *loved* Windows Phone immediately, but my service continued to suffer in my area. Upon the release of the HTC Titan, I decided a switch was in order... I moved to AT&T, and after years and years of hating on AT&T, I won't lie-- I'm MUCH happier that I moved. Better service, better phone selection, and my prices are only $5/month more for the same service plan. Sprint needs to get their head in the game on this. Not just Windows Phone, but all their phone options need to step it up.

So, Verizon says they want to support a 3rd phone OS (meaning Windows Phone 7) in the marketplace, saying they can do what they did to the "droid" name with Windows Phone 7...
 
I guess time will tell with what Sprint does...
 
Sprint sucks anyway....

Those of us who are currently on contract with Sprint need to let them know what we want! As I said above, I'm currently happy with my HTC Arrive but a year from now when my contract is up I'll be ready for a new Windows Phone. If Sprint doesn't have it, I will go elsewhere. I also want this to be my last 3G phone.

Not a Sprint evangelist, but I've invested the time to research their network and determine the causes for their slow 3g speeds and plans to address their network issues.  I came to my Sprint Arrive on release day from a Verizon Blackberry and I have to say, my Windows Phone downloads data much faster than my Blackberry ever did.  Given the difference in phone equipment and carrier, I can't claim whether the Blackberry device or Verizon network were to blame for data speeds.  Not important to me because I moved to Sprint to get the Arrive and for the affordable family plan.
I have been researching the issues with Sprint's poor 3g network performance as well as their Sprint Network Vision network overhaul that is being rolled out now across the US.  Based on my research, I believe slow 3g network performance on Sprint can be tied directly to their backhaul network.  This is not your connection from your phone to the Sprint tower, but the tower connection to the internet.
Sprint towers are primarily connected to the internet via T-1 and bundled T-1 lines, not microwave or fiber connections.  The backhaul network is overloaded in busy areas because the T-1 connections can't handle all the requests coming from 3g devices.  The Sprint Network Vision plan includes upgrading towers from T-1 lines to fiber or microwave backhaul connections.  These backhaul upgrades are happening now, independent of their LTE rollout, because they need them in place to support the LTE upgrades.
As part of this Network Vision upgrade, Sprint is shutting down their iDEN push to talk Nextel network, which runs at a good building penetration low frequency in the 800mhz range so that they can deploy LTE at that low frequency.  This will provide customers with good inside building LTE coverage.  They are also going to run LTE at their current 3g frequency of 1900mhz.  Clear is converting their WiMax network to LTE at their even higher frequency.  Also, by folding their Nextel towers in with their CDMA towers, they are going to expand to a greater number of POPs.
All this to say, that if Sprint is going to roll out Windows Phone 8 devices when my contract is up next year, I will be happy to maintain my unlimited 4g data plans on all 4 of my smartphones and pick up a new device from Sprint.  Just hoping it's a Lumia of some sort.
Bing "Sprint 4g rollout updates" and you will find a site (s4gru) that provides a forum where Sprint insiders go in depth with details of what is coming in the Sprint Network Vision network update.
 

That network vision rollout and the site they created is a lie! It said that upgrades were completed in my area during the last 6 months with only one voice upgrade planned, yet my speeds are still slow before I left.

I wouldn't say there's "huge demand" for the Lumia 900 at bestbuy.com. Here are the sales rankings for this week:

AT&T (72 phones offered)
20. HTC Titan (19. a week ago, 53. a month ago)
23. Nokia Lumia 900 Black (29. a week ago, 34. a month ago)
30. Samsung Focus Flash (27. a week ago, 28. a month ago)
44. Nokia Lumia 900 Cyan (40. a week ago, 45. a month ago)
56. Samsung Focus S (55. a week ago, 54. a month ago)
64. HTC HD7S (64. a week ago, 63. a month ago)
67. HTC Surround (68. a week ago, 65. a month ago)

T-Mobile (28 phones offered)
7. Nokia Lumia 710 Black (6. a week ago, 4. a month ago)
8. Nokia Lumia 710 White (7. a week ago, 5. a month ago)
9. HTC Radar (8. a week ago, 7. a month ago)

Verizon (57 phones offered)
37. HTC Trophy (36. a week ago, 52. a month ago)

Sprint (51 phones offered)
32. HTC Arrive (42. a week ago, 28. a month ago)

"We have the worst 1st generation Windows Phone in our line up, and no one is buying it. So Windows Phone is crap." No wonder Sprint is failing as a company. Worst leadership ever.
Is he that ignorant to blieve that consumers desire value and are not dumb. Only serious windows fans will buy the HTC arrive. I am sorry if that offends anyone, but honestly we all know it is not the best smart phone on Sprint. Offer a modern Windows Phone and people will buy. I just want to scream right now.

I had to buy a Samsung focus S unlocked to t-Mobile better than my HTC sensation. My data speed suck anyways. Can't wait for my contact to be over to switch to at&t. Most likely they will get dips on the first Apollo

Please.. Sprint could actually provide timely updates instead of blaming Microsoft. Can't wait for my sprint contract to be up...

LOL.  I broke my Sprint contract too.  Although, I loved my HTC Arrive, the Nokia Lumia 900 is the hardware I wanted to carry around.  Also, as of right now, I am getting way better service on ATT than Sprint in the DC area. 

I would not believe anything this gentleman says. Sprint has literally bet the farm on the IPhone. They went very heavily in debt to get the device on their network. I cannot see them welcoming a device that would directly compete with it.
Just my opinion....