Sprint Shutters WiMAX Network

Sprint Shutters WiMAX Network

It’s an inglorious end for the first 4G mobile broadband service to debut in the US. Sprint has announced that it will officially discontinue operation of its WiMAX network “on or about November 6, 2015.” Sprint completed its acquisition of WiMAX operator Clearwire in the summer of 2013 and has plans to re-farm the Clearwire spectrum for the growing Sprint LTE network.

WiMAX was always the underdog in the 4G mobile broadband race, but Sprint/Clearwire still drew in millions of customers for WiMAX service (including yours truly), and Clearwire used the technology to pioneer a no-contract 4G data plan.

In one interesting deployment, Clearwire partnered with an organization called Mobile Citizen to offer low-cost mobile Internet service exclusively to education and non-profit groups. Today, Mobile Citizen continues to market WiMAX service for the incredibly low price of $120 per year plus the cost of a hotspot, USB, or desktop modem. Sprint will maintain the partnership despite shutting down its WiMAX network, and Mobile Citizen says it is working with the carrier to “determine the timing and pricing of future LTE service plans and devices.”

3 thoughts on “Sprint Shutters WiMAX Network”

  1. Too bad. I’m enjoying having unlimited 4G-like speeds for $25/month. None of Sprint’s (or any other provider’s) plans can come close.

  2. I’ve had unlimited 4G on T-Mobile for $20/mo going on a year now… although I think the current rate is $30 (with 3GB and 5GB coming in less). Of course, what I gained in quantity has been partially offset by what I’ve lost in coverage (compared to Verizon, where I came from).

  3. I’m paying $55 a month for unlimited broadband and use around 160 gigs a month. No one offers anything like that. Dave Z. – Those unlimited plans are for mobile phone data and not for a broadband router and modem device. Closest is Verizon, 50 gigs for $300 a month.

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