In a bit of a surprise turn of events, Sprint has chosed to implement a 1xEV-DO 3G data network. Similar to Verizon’s network, it will run at speeds of 300-500 kilobits and a peak burst rate of 2.4 megabits.
Sprint expects to have inital service in select markets this quarter, with most major metropolitan markets getting service in 2005. Plans, pricing and applications have not been determined.
1xEV-DO is fully backwards compatible with Sprint’s current 1xRTT (PCS Vision) data network, and can be used whenever EV-DO service is not available.
Sprint does indicate that their plans to implement 1xEV-DV, the faster more advanced cousin to EV-DO have not been cancelled, but rather delayed. Sprint says that they plan to invest more than $1,000,000,000 to complete both EV-DO and “a subsequent, more advanced release of CDMA technology that is expected to be available… in 2006”.