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

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.

TOPICS: 4G, Mobility, Smartphones
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

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  • Too bad I can't access that LTE goodness with a laptop

    There's no real point in offering such fast wireless broadband speeds with an unlimited plan if you cannot use it with a device that can take the most advantage of it - your laptop. Why doesn't Sprint offer unlimited for their mobile hotspot devices, or for that matter, include smartphone tethering in their definition of unlimited?

    21Mbps with a 12GB tethering cap. That's like hitting an empty freeway with a 80MPH speed limit... only to face a $80 toll booth every 5 miles.

    Teaser articles like these do little to hide the fact that mobile broadband in the U.S. still sucks.
  • 4G LTE

    Well, no other carrier has an unlimited plan for a smartphone or a tethered device. So, why pick on Sprint about it?

    Most/Many Android fans will root their devices and use apps available in the Google Play Store to tether a tablet, laptop or other device.

    Sorry, most folks will use a laptop via wi-fi for heaving surfing anyway.
  • NW Houston

    To the writer, what part of Houston did you test this out? I live in NW Houston and have not been able to get a family members EVO LTE to connect to 4G indoors or outdoors...