Sprint 4G LTE network live in Houston: Hands-on

Summary:Sprint customers are quick to brag about their true unlimited data plans, but until yesterday could only look at LTE longingly from afar. That's changed in a few cities as the Sprint LTE network has gone live.

Galaxy SIII tribe

There is 4G and then there's 4G LTE, and those lucky enough to use the latter are familiar with the consistent speeds it provides. Sprint has rolled out its first LTE coverage in a few cities, and my home base of Houston went live yesterday. I have been testing the new network today using the spiffy Galaxy S III smartphone, and it is smoking hot on LTE.

You can check the Sprint 4G LTE coverage map to see if your area is covered yet, and if it is you may want to think about a Sprint phone. Currently that coverage area consists of Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Kansas City, San Antonio, and Waco.

Sprint is the last remaining big U. S. carrier that offers true unlimited data plans to everyone, and LTE is the best way to take advantage of that speed.

There is a big advantage to being an early adopter on an LTE network. I experienced this first-hand when Verizon first rolled out its LTE network in Houston a while back. Due to the lack of LTE data customers, the data speed was insanely fast for those who signed up early.

That will be the case for the Sprint network as my bandwidth tests have confirmed in the downtown Houston area today. While Sprint claims a 2 - 3 Mbps upload speed, I have been seeing much faster speeds consistently on the Galaxy S III.

If you like unlimited data, and you're thinking about LTE, and you happen to live in a live coverage area you may want to hoof it to a Sprint store and check out the EVO 4G LTE or the Galaxy S III. Two good phones with a super-fast data network all to yourself.

Sprint LTE speedtest

Topics: 4G, Mobility, Smartphones

About

James Kendrick has been using mobile devices since they weighed 30 pounds, and has been sharing his insights on mobile technology for almost that long. Prior to joining ZDNet, James was the Founding Editor of jkOnTheRun, a CNET Top 100 Tech Blog that was acquired by GigaOM in 2008 and is now part of that prestigious tech network. James' w... Full Bio

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