Jul 19th, 2011

Fielding a question at Sprint’s Overland Park headquarters in Kansas regarding Sprint’s stand-still status on 4G WiMax rollouts, CEO Dan Hesse let everyone know that he hears your concerns about the lack of deployments in recent months and says to expect a big announcement regarding 4G sometime this fall.

You know what immediately came to our mind – Lightsquared. Hesse is rumored to mention a deal with Lightsquared in a financial earnings call on July 28th, a deal that would eventually bring LTE speeds – hopefully some of the same speeds Verizon customers currently get – to their subscribers.

A fall announcement doesn’t fit in with July 28th, but Hesse could always choose not to talk about that on the conference call as it’s not really a formal platform for such an announcement.

Another possibility is that the fall announcement is something different altogether, but we can’t imagine what it’d be. For starters, we know Sprint wouldn’t wait that long to announce new rollout plans with Clearwire after they invested in the company to keep them afloat in order to continue rolling WiMax service out.

And if this autumn’s announcement is indeed LTE-related, the wait for a widespread network like Verizon’s is further off than you might hope. Sprint still has many devices with WiMax radios and many customers own those devices – it’s not smart business to just leave them in the dark. A 4G LTE launch regiment will need to take into consideration Sprint’s WiMax network so expect them to tread lightly, cautiously and probably slowly. [BGR]