Sprint has all but confirmed that tomorrow's handset launch is a Windows Phone 7 device, with the carrier's latest tweet - "Wouldn't it be great to have your phone integrated with your home game console, like Xbox?" - highlighting one of Microsoft's platform's exclusive features. Sprint is expected to officially unveil the HTC Arrive, aka the HTC 7 Pro.
The HTC 7 Pro may well be headed to Sprint tomorrow - based on the carrier's broad teases earlier this week - but it seems it won't be keeping the same name. Sprint has apparently proved unable to resist a rebranding opportunity, and going by the new placeholder at sprint.com/arrive, it looks like the Windows Phone 7 smartphone will launch as the Sprint HTC Arrive.
Looks like Sprint hasn't learnt its lesson. The carrier blew expectations out of proportion for the Kyocera Echo, delivering an awkward dual-display Android handset with seriously niche appeal, and it's headed in the same way with a new teaser campaign building up to Thursday, February 24. "What do you think the next new Sprint phone will be?" the carrier asked via its official Twitter account; our money is on the HTC 7 Pro.
BillToMobile has just signed a deal with Sprint to allow the carrier’s customers to purchase items with their mobile phones. With this deal BillToMobile now has three of the four major carriers in the U.S.--their previous deals with Verizon and AT&T. T-Mobile is the only major carrier to not have a deal with the company thus far.
WiMax appears doomed in the US with Clearwire shutting down retail operations and LTE networks coming online as we speak. Sprint banked on a massive lead in the market for WiMax to offset the slower speeds compared to LTE and that significant lead didn't get Sprint where it hoped to be. According to PCWorld Sprint is now looking at the future of 4G and eyeing LTE.
Skype and Qik jointly announced at MWC 2011 that they plan on further integrating their technologies to help improve Qik's video calls on Sprint and T-Mobile devices and develop Skype's video calling solution for the Verizon LTE network. However, during the talk, Skypes's head of consumer product management, Rick Osterloh, hinted at the possibility of bringing Skype's video calling to AT&T devices. "Let's watch out for some announcements there," said Osterloh when asked about pursuing a relationship with AT&T as a video calling partner.
Nokia has been in talks with Verizon Wireless in the US, CEO Stephen Elop has confirmed to us, and while the Finnish company has no plans to announce today, the possibility of CDMA devices is still on the table. Speaking in an interview with SlashGear at MWC 2011 today, Elop denied the long-standing belief that Nokia's relationships with the North American carriers were poor.
Clearwire is hurting for cash and has been implementing strategies to save up since fourth quarter last year with cutting jobs and canceling some retail launches. However, according to the WSJ's sources, it has now officially decided to abandon its retail operations and focus on growing its network as a wholesale 4G WiMax provider.
Sprint's Kyocera Echo is certainly eye-catching, you have to give it that. Packing two 3.5-inch touchscreens and a clever - if slightly convoluted - hinge, the Echo can be used in a tiny-laptop configuration, as a flattened slate or, if you don't mind a particularly thick device, as a single-display handset. Android 2.2 Froyo and some serious customization are in evidence too; check out our full hands-on impressions - and video - after the cut.