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Sprint's $199 HTC EVO 4G Gets Release Date of June 4 182

Posted by timothy
from the blanket-the-earth-with-signal dept.
Chameleon Man writes "The first 4G phone ever to be released, the HTC EVO 4G, announced back in March, has finally been given a release date of June 4. Along with the release date, Sprint has provided information on phone plans and pricing. From Engadget: 'Unfortunately, there's a downside to all this: customers will be paying a mandatory (as confirmed to us by Sprint reps) $10 per month "Premium Data add-on" on top of their plan — ostensibly for the privilege of enjoying WiMAX when they're in a Sprint 4G market — and the 8-device Wi-Fi hotspot feature runs an extra $29.99 a month, which Sprint is quick to point out is half what you'd pay for a dedicated mobile broadband account.' In 4G areas, it might be a formidable option for anyone who hates their ISP *ehem* Comcast *ehem.*"
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Sprint's $199 HTC EVO 4G Gets Release Date of June 4

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  • No... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Darkness404 (1287218) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:42PM (#32200598)

    In 4G areas, it might be a formidable option for anyone who hates their ISP *ehem* Comcast *ehem.*"

    While paying for 4G might allow you to get rid of Comcast for "ordinary" browsing, mobile phone providers are going to be a lot more strict about caps and such than Comcast most likely because bandwidth is more limited.

    • Re:No... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:45PM (#32200648)

      Sprint has specificaly stated that paying your $10 surcharge for 4G gets you truly unlimited data (as in no cap).

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        Sprint has specificaly stated that paying your $10 surcharge for 4G gets you truly unlimited data (as in no cap).

        The word "unlimited" has a special meaning in the field of telecoms, I think you'll find, and it's not the one in the dictionary.

    • Re:No... (Score:5, Informative)

      by hahiss (696716) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:53PM (#32200742) Homepage

      Except that the extra $10 gets you no cap, at least according to PhoneScoop:

      http://www.phonescoop.com/news/item.php?n=5973 [phonescoop.com]

      I know, I know, mobile provider promises and $2.50 will get you a ride on the subway. I'm skeptical too.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Dishevel (1105119) *
        Seriously though. If you have to extra on top of the data plan to get a "Truly Unlimited" data plan. Sprint would find it very difficult in court to justify any cap.
        • Re:No... (Score:4, Insightful)

          by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @06:58PM (#32201540)

          Seriously though. If you have to extra on top of the data plan to get a "Truly Unlimited" data plan. Sprint would find it very difficult in court to justify any cap.

          It should be difficult in court to justify unlimited not really meaning unlimited, but alas, they have shaken our faith.

          This is well earned distrust.

      • by BitZtream (692029)

        Yea, just like comcast sells you unlimited service.

        Unlimited means they just don't tell you the limit, not that its actually unlimited.

    • by jasonwc (939262)

      I'm interested to know if anyone has actually had their Comcast connection terminated (on the East Coast) due to exceeding the 250 GB cap. I have exceeded the cap numerous times and never heard as much as a word from Comcast. In fact, a Comcast tech mentioned that they don't enforce the cap at all in my area.

      I wonder if enforcement is regional in nature. It seems stupid to have a rule that generates such bad PR if they're not even going to enforce it.

      • by edittard (805475)
        Should apply cap "yes" or apply cap "no". Comcast apply cap "guess so".
    • Sprint's 4G is really clear.com's service and they have made strong implications of unlimited service. Clear's site goes so far as to bash the concept of the 5 gig limit of most 3G providers. They market the service as a broadband replacement for home use.

      If this turns out to be true, my Verizon 3G data package is going to be in serious jeopardy next fall. (Assuming clear/sprint roll out coverage in my area by then.)

      • Re:No... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by orcateers (883419) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @06:10PM (#32200948)
        I used to have Clearwire in Seattle, (which I believe was the same network this phone will use), the speed was good for streaming video, and they didn't have any cap on monthly usage, but they throttled me for bittorrent, ostensibly because of the upload quantity, but ftp uploading to my web host never caused any alarm. (I noticed that the sprint service for evo will cap uploads at 1 mbps). On an unrelated note, the wimax service varied greatly based on what window I put the antenna in, or what corner of the house I was in etc, so you'd have to test it out on-site before getting an idea of what it can really do for you.
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Beardydog (716221)
          They throttled me too : ( And then their local storefronts disappeared, and then they changed their name from something recognizable and google-linked to several vitriolic websites to something that is difficult to search for effectively.
          On the bright side, my modem reached Texas before they forcefully renewed my two year "Please Throttle Me" plan.
    • by caladine (1290184)

      Until 4G actually meets the speeds I can get currently (20 Mbps down, 5 Mbps up), I'm not sure I see the point in trading providers. I do hope this leads to improved service due to improved competition and the like, though.

  • HTC has released the Max 4G more than a year ago.

    • by sznupi (719324)

      How much "4G" is it anyway? This table [wikipedia.org] (yeah, I know, just what was agreed there) seems to place mobile WiMax in "3G transitional", together with other tech of comparable speeds which is generally regarded as "3G"

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by mlts (1038732) *

        I wonder how "3.5G" networks such as T-Mobile's HSPA+ will compare to this. T-Mobile is supposed to have this rolled out at the end of this year, and because it isn't as big a hardware change, towers can be converted faster as compared to a completely new wireless technology.

        I've heard people in Philadelphia say that T-Mobile has the edge compared to Clear WiMax, but it has been stated that T-Mobile has a 5 GB limit per month, so that makes it useless for a primary Internet connection.

        • by ZosX (517789)

          I've been told that the android data plan is unlimited. When I signed up, I asked the rep specifically about caps, and he said there were no caps. I don't know if this is true or not, but I do know that if you exceed your cap it generally kicks you down to edge, or at least that is how it used to. I've heard quotes of 10gb caps for t-mobile, so I'm guessing that their different data plans are all not the same. Do you know if hspa+ will be supported on all the htc android phones, or will it require all new h

  • by RightSaidFred99 (874576) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:50PM (#32200712)
    They only think they're charging for the wifi hotspot functionality. You can already do this with current Android phones with a little work, and someone will hack the Evo to do it natively for free within a reasonably short period.
  • A Sprint "Everything [google.com]" data plan, even with a $10 tariff for 4G, is still ridiculously cheaper than the crazy high prices that AT&T gouges from its Apple-dazed captive masses.

    If you decide to swing an employee referral plan [fatwallet.com] for the Evo then you are really coming out ahead.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      SERO usually doesn't get any of the good phones.

    • What high prices? It's $10 more for AT&T service that is at least top two in the country. SERO "used to be" good when it was $30, now it's no better than anywhere else.

      Sprint on the other hand has tons of trouble and I can't find anyone happy with it where I am.

    • by BitZtream (692029)

      Apple charges $30 for data ... since when did sprint start charging $20 for unlimited data?

    • A Sprint "Everything" data plan, even with a $10 tariff for 4G, is still ridiculously cheaper than the crazy high prices that AT&T gouges from its Apple-dazed captive masses.

      Hardly. I just just checked prices (because I'm out of contract with AT&T and thinking of upgrading to a smart phone), and AT&T will charge me $130/mo for two iPhones while Sprint will charge me $128/mo for two Droid phones - and that's without the 4G tariff.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        ok, but that's apples and oranges
        that price with AT&T is for 550 minutes of talk, sprint gives 1500
        sprint also gives all mobile class (to any carrier) free and nights/weekend from 7pm
        you'd also need to add $30 to AT&T for unlimited texting and $10 a month per phone
        for navigation. Then if you have more than 2 lines AT&T charges $10
        for the extra line but then would still need the $30 data and $10 nav fees
        where Sprint just charges $20 with all data/text/nav/any other feature included

      • because except for a business need which is paid for by work, I do not waste money on plans like these.

        In a day and age when people are complaining about not having enough money for this and that or worse, demanding government take money from others to relieve themselves of expenses they could help pay for in total or part, we have people who throw over a thousand at a cell phone. I know a few myself who spend a fortune and the phone does what most of the day, sit dormant, but they are so cool, I guess

        My p

      • Hardly. I just just checked prices (because I'm out of contract with AT&T and thinking of upgrading to a smart phone), and AT&T will charge me $130/mo for two iPhones while Sprint will charge me $128/mo for two Droid phones - and that's without the 4G tariff.

        I don't see how you can price a comparable plan on AT&T for $130.
        I have 4 phones on my family plan and everyone in my family would sure like an iPhone, but the value is just not there when you compare AT&T prices to Sprint.
        You would have to find an AT&T plan that charges $40 for 2 lines since you need to add at least $90 in add-ons ($60 (2x$30) for iPhone data plan + $30 for family messaging) to match the Sprint plan.
        The "Sprint Everything Data Family - with Any Mobile, AnytimeSM" get you, for $

  • The $50 question... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mlts (1038732) * on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:55PM (#32200768)

    When will someone get the Evo rooted and able to have custom ROMs. This is my biggest decision maker on what phone I select. If the phone has hidden obstacles (partitions that can't be mounted rw even with root, fastboot issues, etc.), or have other gotchas (such as the radio ROM upgrade on the Cliq), then I'll pass, even if it has a fast Internet connection.

    I can think of a lot of very useful things that could be useful with a device offering a fast connection and with a custom ROM. A quick and dirty failover connection on a LAN, to plugging into a server and running some firewall/VPN software on the Android level for a fast remote access ability, to load balancing (if someone has a slow, but low latency DSL connection, the packets for games go through that, while the video streaming and such will go through the high bandwidth, high latency 4g connection).

    Of course, I wonder how well this will perform if not on a Clear/4G network. How well will it failover to 3G gracefully if I'm in the sticks and able to get a "generic" CDMA signal?

  • Not quite.. (Score:4, Informative)

    by SirFozzie (442268) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:59PM (#32200818)

    The summary states it's $199. Not really true.

    Not just the $10/mo fee for data.. but..

    A) $100 Mail-In Rebate (so $299). And remember how much fun trying to claim a Mail-In Rebate is (and the lengths that they'll go to deny such claims?)
    B) You have to be able to switch phones.. for those of you who still have an agreement length date.. if you really want it.. throw in an early termination fee.. ($449)
    C) Plus you're locked in for two years.

    • Re:Not quite.. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Tumbleweed (3706) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @06:10PM (#32200954)

      A) $100 Mail-In Rebate (so $299). And remember how much fun trying to claim a Mail-In Rebate is (and the lengths that they'll go to deny such claims?)
      B) You have to be able to switch phones.. for those of you who still have an agreement length date.. if you really want it.. throw in an early termination fee.. ($449)
      C) Plus you're locked in for two years.

      So, in other words, all the normal things that happen when you get a new phone/upgrade an existing phone.

      You may be able to avoid the MIR if you get the phone at Best Buy, though I can't recommend 'experiencing' Best Buy just to avoid an MIR. *shudder*

      • by Dishevel (1105119) *

        though I can't recommend 'experiencing' Best Buy just to avoid an MIR. *shudder*

        I can. I would rather go to Best Buy for 15 min than do a $100.00 MIR. I wouldn't want to buy anything else there, or listen to a salesman throw out some tech words hoping I am stupid and just say ok. But I will be purchasing my EVO from Best Buy,

        • by Tumbleweed (3706)

          I would rather go to Best Buy for 15 min than do a $100.00 MIR. I wouldn't want to buy anything else there, or listen to a salesman throw out some tech words hoping I am stupid and just say ok. But I will be purchasing my EVO from Best Buy,

          I heard they might be doing the pre orders already, if you want your EVO on day one. FYI.

      • by hAckz0r (989977)
        With the amount of fighting I have had to do with SprintPCS directly I would say going to Best Buy would be well worth it! To get a rebate you need a sales slip, which is never in the package delivered to your door (at least not mine). They don't accept other documentation other than what they list on the MIR forms. The MIR processing itself is handled by an outsourced company that can't or won't look up your Sprint records and absolutely refuses to honour anything as far as I can tell. Ok, once. I have bee
        • Everything you've said is true.

          I have attempted several sprint rebates... both took over 7 months to complete... one had to be completely resubmitted 3 times... the other, two times.

          I am not posting anonymously so you can see my name and contact me later if you decide to push forward for class action. I will gladly testify to my experience. Despite ultimately receiving the rebates it was very clear to me that they deliberately mis-process and lose your information as standard practice to prevent what they

      • So, in other words, all the normal things that happen when you get a new phone/upgrade an existing phone.

        You may be able to avoid the MIR if you get the phone at Best Buy, though I can't recommend 'experiencing' Best Buy just to avoid an MIR. *shudder*

        YMMV, but I was able to do this at Radio Shack for my last three sprint phones.. they give you the MIR as instant there, I didn't have to ask about it, it was just the way it worked.

      • I currently work at Radio Shack (between college times, surprisingly more enjoyable than I expected) and I know they don't do mail-in rebates. Can't say anything about pricing, as any such communications I may or may not have received are confidential, I am not a corporate representative, nothing I say here is to be taken as Radio Shack policy, etc, etc.
        Also, at least in my area of California the state still charges tax on the FULL, unsubsidised price of the phone. So expect a nice hefty tax ($50 or so in
      • by Aceticon (140883)

        So, in other words, all the normal things that happen when you get a new phone/upgrade an existing phone.

        Some of us actually just buy unlocked phones: after my first phone, I have never again been locked in a mobile phone contract (saved tons of money btw).

        Is this not an option in the US with this mobile phone?

        • by Tumbleweed (3706)

          Some of us actually just buy unlocked phones: after my first phone, I have never again been locked in a mobile phone contract (saved tons of money btw).

          Is this not an option in the US with this mobile phone?

          It usually is an option. In fact, there's often an in between 1 year contract option many times. If you have the money, go for it.

      • by T.E.D. (34228)

        You can also pick up your EVO two days earlier if you get it from Best Buy. Now is it worth it?

        Not for me. I'm getting it from my local Sprint Store. But I had to ask. :-)

    • by hhawk (26580)

      You maybe be locked into a contract to have the service with Sprint but you are able to change your plan during the contract period or so I've been led to believe by talking to the Sprint support staff.

    • by Splab (574204)

      How nice it must be in the land of the free.

      Here in communist Denmark, companies are by law not able to lock people in for more than 6 months, rebates are unknown - if they want you to have it cheaper, they have to lower the price, no suckering in the lazy.

    • A) $100 Mail-In Rebate (so $299). And remember how much fun trying to claim a Mail-In Rebate is (and the lengths that they'll go to deny such claims?)

      If you buy the phone at best buy, it's an instant rebate. I'm just sayin'.

  • by owlstead (636356) on Thursday May 13, 2010 @05:59PM (#32200820)

    30 dollars just to turn on a feature of the mobile phone? Who are they kidding? Will anybody pay that price? And how long until somebody hacks the device to turn it on? Or maybe they are just relying on some businesses and rich people that don't care about 30 dollars a month?

    Personally I think it's a ridiculous amount - and I do think they simply disable it because they are afraid of large downloads. Ultimately, I do think that is ungrounded, it will be some time before wireless beats wired internet for continuous downloads.

    That said, at least there is the option. I am happily using my android phone as 3G modem while on the road. I've got only 128kbit, but for browsing while I'm in a train, it's just perfect. But there's no way I'm going to pay 30 dollars for that kind of infrequent use.

    (in June there will be Android 2.1 for the Hero, I'm looking forward to using bluetooth instead of the USB cable, although that will drain the phones battery instead of charging it)

    • by Tumbleweed (3706)

      Personally I think it's a ridiculous amount - and I do think they simply disable it because they are afraid of large downloads. Ultimately, I do think that is ungrounded, it will be some time before wireless beats wired internet for continuous downloads.

      While I'm disappointed at the extra fee, I think a phone like the EVO 4G on a WiMax network will encourage people to do a lot more downloading of video, which will impact their network. As they say, this IS half the price of their tethering plan, so while it

      • by owlstead (636356)

        I'm paying less than 25 euro per month for my Android experience right now. That includes I think 100 minutes a month (or SMS) and an unlimited 128 Kbit data plan, although that is only valid within the Netherlands (we tend to travel outside a lot, NL is not that large). In addition, I payed just 30 euro for the phone itself. 30 dollars per month seems quite a lot for just a WiFi hotspot feature to me, it's as much as my total costs (if I don't phone over 100 minutes of course - no problem I use email for m

      • I need to find an HDMI-to-DVI cable for this thing...

        The video signal is, for all intents, the same- just a different pinout/connector.. I assume the EVO will have a proprietary plug on it so their cable will have that on one end and HDMI on the other. If that's the case, you can use a simple dongle [amazon.com] but DVI doesn't carry audio. Here's a rather unwieldy and way overpriced unit [gefen.com] that gives you HDMI -> DVI + optical (toslink) audio

        • by Tumbleweed (3706)

          but DVI doesn't carry audio. Here's a rather unwieldy and way overpriced unit that gives you HDMI -> DVI + optical (toslink) audio

          Oh crap, didn't know that about DVI. How irritating. :(

          That way overpriced solution IS _WAAAY_ overpriced $299 is more than the phone! :)

    • by barzok (26681)

      30 dollars just to turn on a feature of the mobile phone? Who are they kidding? Will anybody pay that price? And how long until somebody hacks the device to turn it on? Or maybe they are just relying on some businesses and rich people that don't care about 30 dollars a month?

      Except it may actually be worth it to some people.

      Doing this gets you up to 8 WiFi connections to "hang" other devices off. I'm paying Time Warner $50/month for RoadRunner at 10Mbps. If I were already going to buy this phone, I could pa

      • by owlstead (636356)

        I presume then that they have already turned off all tethering. Other it would not be hard to have another device act as the router, using the droid as a USB modem (it can charge at the same time). Maybe that's a bit of a kludge, but at 30 dollars per month it might be worth it - until somebody hacks the phone of course.

        • by barzok (26681)

          I've been wondering the same thing. My wife has thought about getting a USB dongle for 3G access on her laptop; if tethering is allowed with the EVO 4G without paying the extra $30, that would take care of just about everything.

    • 30 dollars just to turn on a feature of the mobile phone? Who are they kidding? Will anybody pay that price?

      I dunno. Perhaps the people who are currently paying $60/mo for a Sprint Mobile Hotspot, but would prefer to pay half that cost?

  • $30 (Score:2, Informative)

    by Beardydog (716221)
    ClearWire is $40 per month here, with a USB stick for your laptop... Or $30 per month with a netbook-sized modem and a lantern battery in a fanny pack.
  • $29.99 per month to flip a bit? I'm in the wrong business.

    • by hhawk (26580)

      Clearly in that it supports 8 Wifi connections it could run them a lot of data. I see this as an option for small offices and remote productions (TV, sports, catering, etc.) where a team is in a remote location and everyone has wifi devices.. the boss brings an Evo (has to plug it in or go through a few batteries) but everyone gets' internet... worth the 30.00

      • by RMH101 (636144)
        well yes, but isn't this what the MiFi is for?
        • by hhawk (26580)

          yes, was hoping it was part of the regular data plan and it should have been.. but it's hard to have a phone w/ no cap and then allow eight users to bang on it.. so it's not as great as I would have liked but can understand sprints' position..

          For those who need it, it's clearly a good value. Just wish there was a low volume alternative included "free" with the 70-120 dollar a month plans..

  • by EmagGeek (574360) <gterich@@@aol...com> on Thursday May 13, 2010 @08:50PM (#32202556) Journal

    "In 4G areas, it might be a formidable option for anyone who hates their ISP *ehem* Comcast *ehem.*"

    Not really... I tried a 4G service out last week and the latency was so horrible that it wouldn't matter if it had a 100Mbit transport, it'd still be slow as all hell and basically useless.

    Latency to the gateway was between 75 and 125ms. That's horrible every day of the week.

    • by MrZilla (682337)

      That is not really exceptional. You will have the same issue in a 3G network, owing to how the internal network is structured.

      Radio Access Networks (RANs) are by and large still constructed with voice in mind, so you get low latency in voice communication, where you set up a permanent circut throughout the RAN and Core Network, whereas data packets need to be routed individually.

      Newer technologies are focusing on lowering latency on data, LTE for instance is designed for data rather than voice, and the goal

      • by T.E.D. (34228)
        He wasn't comparing it to 3G. He was comparing it to a cable modem. What he's saying is that anybody who does gaming had better not switch from cable or DSL to Sprint's 4G just yet.
  • I'm waiting for the actual cost data. I really want this phone, but I saw the "fine print" in the e-mail announcement, and now I'm not so sure.

    $199 - after rebate, Ok. It's tolerable.
    $69 for "Anything" basic service - which does or does not include SMS? I tend to text more than call, lately.
    $30 for "wireless hub" service - ouch.
    $? for a data plan -- ? ... and whatever else they want to throw in.

    • by Tumbleweed (3706)

      I'm waiting for the actual cost data. I really want this phone, but I saw the "fine print" in the e-mail announcement, and now I'm not so sure.

      $199 - after rebate, Ok. It's tolerable.
      $69 for "Anything" basic service - which does or does not include SMS? I tend to text more than call, lately.
      $30 for "wireless hub" service - ouch.
      $? for a data plan -- ? ... and whatever else they want to throw in.

      All that information is already available:

      $69.99 'Everything 450' includes EVERYTHING except unlimited voice. You

  • should be investigated by Congress -- just my opinion, but to force customers to pay an extra surcharge per month to buy the product should be illegal but only if it can be proved that all of the wireless providers colluded to force the customer into this racket. I think the odds of this being the case are high since every provider is perpetuating this scam.

    Case in point: I already have a work provided wireless device that provides a data plan, I don't need to pay an extra monthly fee on my personal mobile

    • by harl (84412)

      Or you could call sprint and find out that the summary is wrong.

      The $10 bumps you from a 5GB limit to no limit.

      Go check 8668667509

  • I have a five year old Sprint plan that they are surely trying to kill off. Instead of paying $55 like I currently do for talk + unlimited text and data, they want me to pay $80 / mo to own the first decent phone Sprint has released since the Pre. For the same exact plan.

    No wonder they nixed the Nexus One - if I could buy the phone to own it outright, then how else could they force an additional $25 / month into my plan?

    TMobile, please bring 3G to my area!
  • I like the idea of 4G phones and banishing Comcast & Verizon to the netherworld... (actually I'd probably be happy with just the 4G service to a USB/Ethernet port -- forget the pricey "phone") Points 1 to Sprint for promoting competition and offering alternatives.

    However, to view the sprint.com evo announcement requires that ones browser have Javascript enabled and Flash 9 installed. And yet the web page is lots of "text" which requires only simple HTML to display [1]. A lot of people don't want to b

  • So... you do know how Sprint has this 4G network, right? They haven't built it, this little company Sprint invested in called "Clearwire" actually built and maintains the 4G network Sprint handsets use.

    Guess who else is a minority owner of Clearwire? Comcast.

    Do you really believe that Sprint and Comcast view each other as competitors?

  • I just got off the phone with sprint. They flat out said "The premium data plan is optional." 5GB limit without it. Unlimited with it.

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