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4/5/2012
10:52 AM
Eric Zeman
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HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it

Sprint hopes the 7 million customers who picked up its original EVO devices will stay loyal with the HTC EVO 4G LTE.

Sprint badly needs to accomplish two goals: sign up new customers, and keep the customers it already has. The first part of Sprint's one-two punch strategy to accomplish these goals went into effect in October, when it began offering Apple's iPhone for the first time. On Wednesday, Sprint wound up the second punch, which it will deliver by the end of June: the HTC EVO 4G LTE smartphone.

The EVO 4G LTE will be one of the first devices offered by Sprint that's capable of accessing its forthcoming LTE network. Sprint has promised it will launch LTE in six markets by mid-year, and the EVO 4G LTE's availability will likely coincide with the network's arrival.

Sprint is late to the LTE game. It bet (poorly) on WiMax to provide it with next-generation mobile broadband services. Though it grew its WiMax coverage to 70 markets across the U.S., its partner, Clearwire, has had capital issues and ceased building out the network more than a year ago. Sprint is now in the middle of converting its WiMax network into an LTE network. Once it gets LTE up and running, all four of the major network operators in the U.S. will offer it.

[ Sprint's 4G LTE offering will have a formidable competitor in the iPhone. Read more at iPhone Top Seller At AT&T, Spring, And Verizon. ]

The EVO 4G LTE is a variation of the One X series already announced by HTC. It has a different look thanks to some changed materials, but the base features are the same: 4.7-inch Super LCD with a 720p HD display, dual-core 1.5GHx Snapdragon S4 processor, 8-megapixel camera with 1080p HD video capture, Beats Audio, and Android/Sense 4.0. It is one of the few smartphones that includes a kickstand to provide a level surface for watching videos.

The device will be available for pre-order starting May 7, and will sell for $199 with a new two-year contract.

Sprint is banking on one significant factor with the EVO 4G LTE: customer loyalty.

Sprint spokesperson David Owens told InformationWeek that its original EVO line--which was the first WiMax smartphone to reach the market--was a huge seller. In fact, more than 7 million customers have picked up EVO-branded devices since the original EVO launched in June 2010.

Many of those original EVO owners are just now coming off their two-year contracts. Sprint is counting on those customers to stick with Sprint and scoop up the EVO 4G LTE in record numbers when it goes on sale later this year.

Will they? The EVO 4G LTE is certainly a lust-worthy device, just like the other One X devices made by HTC.

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craigjt12
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craigjt12,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/29/2012 | 3:34:18 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
Ditto...I have been a loyal Sprint customer for 15 years. Bought the Evo 4G (my latest Sprint phone ) and so far have shelled out $ 240 for 4G service that never came. A WHOLE LOT of people have been ripped off by Sprint in this way. And now no ICS for my EVO ??? Come on Sprint...you guys need a realty check.
foura1
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foura1,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/17/2012 | 5:21:01 AM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
Ditto on the loyal customer comments. I have never been with another carrier other than sprint. Bought the EVO 4G with the promise of 4G coming to my area which it never did. $240 later ($10 extra per month) they are jumping to LTE and still not in my area. Love the EVO but dont trust Sprint to deliver 4G.
tharsh
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tharsh,
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4/16/2012 | 6:58:22 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
I have been with Sprint for over 10 years. Had all the Treo's, and HTC's. You would have thought the way they treated Hero users this thread wouldn't even be discussed. And yes I stayed (putz) now I have the Evo4g. My contract is up and I am shopping. Sprint is late to the game on phones and they don't care anymore if you have issues with a current model. And I am paying full price for a phone and never getting in the renewal rebate game again. They replaced a defective phone and then they set my available for new phone back 6 months after my contract expired. Funny as hell. And now they cant tell me how they did it and say they can't fix it. You get what you pay for with them which is a bad phone selection, missed promises on 4G availability, crappy support and now no preferred customer plan. Adios!!!!
NCARABALLO000
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NCARABALLO000,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/10/2012 | 7:45:02 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
I love the Evo phones, I have both the 4g and 3D. I plan on getting the 4g LTE, but my biggest gripe is how Sprint has done away with their Gold Premier program. How do they plan on keeping loyal customers if they get rid of the program that rewarded them. The only big reward was the fact that you were eligible for an upgrade every year, now they are making you wait 20 months. As a 10 year + customer, I find this new policy change rather punitive for someone that has shown nothing but loyalty to sprint. I do hope they stop trying to be like the other companies and focus on the aspect that sets them apart (mainly the yearly upgrade and true unlimited for the best price out of the big 4!)
xDetoursX
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xDetoursX,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/6/2012 | 5:31:29 AM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
I don't understand why people are so hung up about the looks. Do you just sit there and stare at the phone or what? I would hardly call this the "the same old gody evo 4g" either. Look at the specs again compared to the EVO 4G.

I would jump on this phone in a heart beat....but. The concern I have is regarding the network. I've had WiMax 4G coverage in my area for a long time and even though their website map shows I should be getting a good 4G signal at my location, I get zero. So basically I've been paying the $10 4g charge for 2 years with no service. Maybe switching out to LTE will fix the coverage issue, but unfortunately I'm afraid the only way to find out will be to get locked in for another 2 years. I'm pretty confident that I won't be able to trust Sprint to be honest about the true coverage area of their network.
RandAlthor
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RandAlthor,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/5/2012 | 6:18:32 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
I have to agree why would I stay with Sprint they are no better then apple.. they repackage an old phone and call it new... I wanted a new design not the same old gody evo 4g. I like the looks of the white HTC One X and was hoping that would be the design. I think they really blew it... the specs of the phone may be awesome but the look of the phone hasn't changed much and the fact you can't change the battery is a dead NO for me.
lacertosus
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lacertosus,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/5/2012 | 4:52:32 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
Dream on Sprint!!! I've been a loyal customer since 1997 and never thought of moving onto a different carrier till now. I was one of the victims that bought into the idea of 4G and purchased the HTC EVO 4G. Almost two years later, the service is yet to come to my city of 1.3 million people. And now Sprint is asking me to hang on and purchase another phone. Dream on....
littlewhizkid
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littlewhizkid,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/5/2012 | 4:41:47 PM
re: HTC EVO 4G LTE: Sprint Bets Future On it
Kind of hard to remain loyal, both to Sprint and HTC. Sprint never brought 4G service to my area and HTC no longer supports the EVO 4G for an upgrade to ICS. And yes, my 2 year contract is coming up for renewal and I'm now thinking Samsung may get my business. Not sure if I will stick with Sprint or not, just not certain they will ever follow through get me "up to speed".
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