sprint

If you've been following our coverage, you'll know that you can now order the Sprint Touch Pro 2 from Sprint telesales directly (866-866-7509).

A few lucky users got theirs delivered yesterday -- a mere 24 hrs after placing their order! Not bad. Of course the rest of us (including yours truly) will have to wait till Tuesday (we loved that band) due to that Labor Day/Sprint doesn't deliver on Saturday's thing (boo).

So, did you get yours yet?  If so, does it have unicorn support, fairy-dusted magic battery life and dream-fulfilling processing power? Let us know in comments!

Photos via stevedusa

   

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5

Sprint Touch Pro 2 Tutorials

Need something to pass the time while you wait for the Sprint Touch Pro 2 to be released? Sprint may have just what you need over on their support pages. Sprint has added tutorials and instructional videos for the Touch Pro 2 on their website's support page.

The tutorials range in topic from installing and charging the battery to setting up your email accounts. The videos offer a broad overview of the Touch Pro 2 as well as more specific instructions on the GPS system, Touchflo 3D and other features on the Touch Pro 2. Sprint also makes available the Touch Pro 2's User Guide for those in need of some light reading.

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We're getting word that as of today, September 3rd, you can now place pre-order for the just announced HTC Touch Pro 2 via Sprint TeleSales (866-866-7509).

All sorts of prices are being thrown around, depending on your current contract-status. There is a $100 MIR and you should be able to get the fee for over-night shipping waived. Some SERO users though are getting denied, so be careful.

The devices are also suppose to be in stock now, meaning deliveries could start as early as tomorrow (no tracking numbers have been confirmed as of yet) but most people are being told it won't ship till next week, so 3-5 business days.

Good luck everyone!

Update:  SERO users should try and call 1-888-503-3078--reportedly orders go through that channel with no problem. (thanks Russelhi).

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Not that it was a big secret that the HTC Touch Pro 2 would be coming to Sprint, but we now have a date and a price to go along with it.

On Sept. 8 (just as we thought), the TP2 will be available for $349.99 after $100 rebate and two-year contract. As we noted last week, it'll have Windows Mobile 6.1 on board. And, yeah, that's a whole lotta jing. But remember that the T-Mobile Touch Pro 2 was priced the same at launch just a few weeks ago, and we already can get it for just $149.99 from a couple of sources (WMDeals and Amazon).

Sprint's presser (read the whole thing and see one more official pic after the break) says it'll be available via telesales (800-SPRINT1) and sales representatives, so in-store is looking likely, too.

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8

Friday Fun: Commercials

Go ahead and admit it, T-Mobile may have turned heads when they were the first to release the Touch Pro 2 but what really turned heads was the company bringing back Catherine Zeta Jones back as a spokesperson. It added a certain zest back to their commercials.

Sprint, AT&T, Verizon and even Altel have cranked out some enjoyable commercials over the years. From Dieter Chad at Alltel to the "what if firefighters ran Congress?" commercials from Sprint these commercials make an impression on the viewer. You may not remember the sales pitch but the slogan, punch line or even the spokesperson keeps the company fresh in your mind.

Follow the break for a few more memorable commercials from wireless service providers.

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Okay folks we have some good news/bad news:

Bad news first is that Sprint and Verizon are launching the hotly anticipated Touch Pro 2 with the same build of Windows Mobile 6.1 as the recently launched Telus version (review).

Interestingly, US Cellular will be launching out the gate with Windows Mobile 6.5 on its Rhodium device, though we have no firm date on that release yet.

Now some goods news:  Sprint and Verizon both have working test-ROMs with Windows Mobile 6.5 already, meaning an official update won't be too far off after launch (8-12 weeks?).  Seems both companies are racing to get it out the door ASAP, so no one is waiting for a stable Windows Mobile 6.5.

Finally, Verizon is not only keeping the GPS unlocked, but it looks to be shipping with Bing/Live Search in the actual ROM. This is odd for them since Verizon usually includes its own Nav program and not Bing/Google Maps (like on the Ozone). Definitely a change in practice there!

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It hasn't been too much of a secret that we're expecting the Sprint Touch Pro 2 in the early part of September. We've already seen a direct ship date of Sept. 3, and now it looks like that's been pushed to Sept. 8, which could point to an in-store date of Sept. 13, if Sprint follows its MO of Sunday launches. Price is $599.99, before rebate and subsidy, we presume.

After the break, we look at a gem of a leak scored by bigchico68 at SprintUsers.com. (And thanks, aero, for the tip!)

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Here's an interesting development. The CDMA Development Group (CDG) just announced its "CDMA2000 1x Advanced Specifications", which appears to be a significant optional upgrade for EV-DO networks (Sprint and Verizon here in the U.S.).

One of these advances allows networks to increase voice capacity on their existing systems by taking advantage of  "...several interference cancellation and radio link enhancements. Among these improvements are base transceiver station (BTS) interference cancellation, improved power control, early frame termination, and smart blanking".  Whatever that means.

Perhaps even more impressive for customers is the creation of SVDO which is simultaneous 1X Voice and EV-DO Data. Unlike GSM, EV-DO cannot do both right now, so our 3G data connection becomes interrupted during calls. We also can't take advantage of "live" services like caller-ID look-up programs (like 'True Caller').

Unfortunately, no word from Sprint or Verizon on whether they would take advantage of this new advancement.  From the details, it looks like they can do this piecemeal or all-at-once, offering networks options for updating their existing technology. 

Perhaps if we shout loud enough, they'll hear us?

 

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1

Wireless data number crunching

 

GigaOM Pro Analyst Network has compiled, crunched, compared, and slide-showed wireless data stats for the second quarter of 2009. The numbers seem to indicate that the demand for wireless data continues to grow despite the national economic picture.

The highlights of the report are as follows:

  • U.S. wireless data service revenue grew 7% during the second quarter to $10.6 billion (with a "B"). This represents a 30% gain compared to the second quarter of 2008.
  • Verizon and AT&T represented the largest gains with both seeing an 8% increase.
  • The U.S. is now the largest mobile data market in the world passing Japan and China.

Broken down by service provider, Verizon is tops with regards to the total number of subscribers with 87.7 million followed closely by AT&T with 79.6 million.  Sprint was a distant third with 49.7 million subscribers.  Combined, AT&T and Verizon account for 69% of the data market and 61% of the wireless subscriber base.  Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon each saw an increase in Pre-Paid subscribers

GigaOM Pro offers a full review of the second quarter numbers here (subscription required) or you can follow the break to catch the slide show highlights.

More at GigaOM.

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No sooner do Malatesta and yours truly mull over whether the Sprint Touch Pro 2 will have a 3.5mm headphone jack in the upcoming podcast (look for it Monday) does Engadget give us the answer (as well as the best pics we've seen so far).

So, to recap, the Sprint, Verizon and Telus versions have it. T-Mobile doesn't. And while we're early into the leak cycle of the AT&T Tilt 2, we're gonna go out on a limb here and say odds are looking pretty good.

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10

Sprint Touch Pro 2 Specs Surface

While the earlier report that the Sprint Touch Pro 2 would hit the shelves in mid-June was blown out of the water (we did say "may" drop in mid-June), specifications for the phone has surfaced over at Sprint's developer site. Not that the speculation Sprint was getting the Touch Pro 2 needed more credence the specifications gives it more of an "official" feel that the HTC Windows Mobile phone is headed to Sprint. We just don't know when.

Not much stands out with these specifications that we didn't already know. The Sprint TP2 will apparently launch with Windows Mobile 6.1. Then again, if this drags on much longer Windows Mobile 6.5 might come into play. Thanks goes to Terry Owen for sending us this tip via our contact form

Via ppcgeeks

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We really have zero doubt that we'll see the Touch Pro 2 on Sprint, and this just about wraps it up. We've gotten a glimpse at the leaked phone itself. We seen ROMs that point to its release. And now it's appeared on Sprint's NASCAR site for, natch, the Sprint Cup. [via Engadget]

It's a little odd that the phone's listed as the Rhodium, which as we all know is its HTC codename. (The asterisk, for the record, points to the Rhodium as one of the "devices (that) support NASCAR Sprint Cup Mobile full audio and video content.")

So we'll avoid saying that Sprint's revving its engine on the Touch Pro 2 (or getting ready to drop the green flag) and instead say that it's coming, get ready.

And if you ain't first, you're last.

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One of the biggest question burning up the comments and the forums is "When can I get the Touch Pro 2?!?!?!?"

Aside from T-Mobile's announced Aug. 12 release, we're still left guessing when Verizon and Sprint will get theirs out the door. (And other than that leaked render, we haven't seen anything else from AT&T.) We're hearing rumors of a September launch for Sprint (rumors only, folks), and we're now seeing a little evidence that shows we shouldn't expect it before then.

PPCGeeks users Godzson and and Major Nate are shepherding a thread with the Sprint playbook, which most notably has a slew of rebate information. Absent from that playbook is any mention of the Touch Pro 2 (or any other new Windows phone, for that matter).

The playbook is dated July 12-Sept. 7, so it's not looking likely that we'll see anything new before then.

That said, Sprint (and the other carriers) could announce any phone they want at any given time. And if they decided to do so sooner rather than later, well, we'd be just fine with that.

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We're getting word that both Verizon and Sprint's upcoming Touch Pro 2 — aka "Rhodium" — are getting closer to launch.

How do we know? Evidently the ROM has been finalized and is ready to ship:

  • RUU_Rhodium_W_VERIZON_WWE_1.16.605.1_RS_1.71WV_NV_VZW_1.38_0505_PRL58002_Ship_PPST
  • RUU_Rhodium_W_Sprint_WWE_1.21.651.3_RS_1.96WF_NV_S PCS_1.42_0430_PRL60652_Ship.exe

With the ROMs locked down, it seems more about dotting their i's and crossing their t's now, specifically time-to-market, FCC, packaging, production, etc. One thing looks certain: Verizon and Sprint are both racing to get this out at the same time.

We can also confirm the radio frequencies available for this CDMA/GSM world phone on both carriers:

  • GSM; GPRS; EDGE; CDMA;UMTS-HSUPA 2Mbps; CDMA2000-1xRTT; CDMA2000-1xEVDO; CDMA2000-1xEVDOrA RL-1.8M,FL-3.1M

Looking pretty sweet.  Verizon, along with its HTC "WhiteStone" device, is poised to make one heck of a WM splash in the next few months.

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2

Sprint purchases Virgin Mobile USA

Sprint this morning announced it was gobbling up Virgin Mobile USA in a deal worth $483 million. That includes the 13.1 percent of Virgin Mobile USA that Sprint already owned. The deal is expected to bolster Sprint's end of the prepaid market, which already includes Boost Mobile.

Said Sprint CEO Dan Hesse:

“The acquisition of Virgin Mobile USA positions Sprint for even greater success in the prepaid wireless segment. Prepaid is growing at an unprecedented rate with consumers keenly focused on value. Virgin Mobile is an iconic brand in the marketplace that will complement our Boost Mobile brand.”

Full presser after the break.

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