Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Sprint WiMax 4G Reaches Ohio!!!
Ok so this wont really matter to many outside of Ohio but I am GEEKED!!!! Sprint's 4G coverage has finally started to roll out in small pockets around the state. If you're like me you were pissed to have to pay the $10/month up-charge for 4G with the Evo and Epic, especially considering that many states have/had ZERO 4G coverage. Sprint has promised to aggressively roll out 4G coverage and had Cleveland and Cincinnati slated for September as the first cities in Ohio with Columbus rumored to fall somewhere around that time frame. Well I'm not sure when coverage started rolling out but I was hearing rumors that we had spotty coverage areas in downtown Columbus and on the north-side of town near the Polaris shopping area. So of course I fired up my Evo's 4G on OSU's campus and..... nothing; but later when I got home (North-side off of Schrock not too far from Polaris) I happily found I get 1-2 bars of 4G goodness depending on which room I stand in.
This couldn't have come at a better time for me since I recently moved and will be without the web for about a week. Fortunately, my rooted Evo has the Wifi-Tether app which turns my Evo into a Wifi-hotspot just like Sprint's default app, but for free! Couple that with the blazing speed of 4G and I'm back in business!
The one huge downside of 4G for the moment however is its RIDICULOUS drain on the battery. Its so bad that it pretty much renders 4G as a plugin-only feature. But rest assured that this issue should be gradually addressed with software updates and better coverage. I've noticed significant 4G performance variances in different cities; for example 4G in ATL seemed to be slower, spottier and consumed WAAAAY more battery than in Chicago. A Clearwire (Sprint's 4G partner) rep in Chicago explained that this is due to the superior coverage that Chicagoans enjoy. So as markets mature and coverage improves we should hopefully see faster speeds and less battery drain.
Evo and Epic users in Ohio (and other states) I'd love to hear what areas of the state you have found 4G coverage in, and I'll be sure to update my findings as I will be making a trip home to Cleveland this weekend. Don't hesitate to drop a few lines below!
Update: I am seeing reports of 4G up and running in other areas in Columbus:
German Village Kroger area, King and Olentangy, Main and Grant, and Parsons and Livingston