Sprint Nextel eyes $3b investment for new WiMAX network

US telecom giant Sprint Nextel will use an emerging technology called WiMAX to build a new high-speed wireless network, according to an Associated Press report.

The report said the new network, expected to be launched by late 2007, would provide customers with wireless Internet speeds on par with DSL and cable TV modems and four times faster than speeds available on current wireless networks.

The report quoted Sprint Nextel CEO Gary Forsee as saying that Intel would be supplying equipment to build the network, while Motorola and Samsung would develop WiMAX-compatible phones and mobile devices.

Sprint expected to spend about $1 billion on the initiative in 2007, and between $1.5 billion and $2 billion in 2008, the report said.

The WiMAX plan also came as Sprint was still rolling out its 3G cellular data network, which just last week the company said it planned to upgrade starting at the end of 2006, the report said.

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