Sprint cuts price on mobile WiMAX service

Sprint Nextel has quietly lowered the monthly service price for its CDMA/mobile WiMAX service from $79.99 per month to $69.99 per month, and is throwing in a free month of service as an extra bonus.

The price cut, outlined by research and consulting firm Current Analysis, comes just a week after the carrier launched mobile WiMAX service in Las Vegas, Atlanta and Portland. Including Baltimore, the carrier now offers its Sprint 4G-branded service, which includes roaming onto its 3G CDMA network, in four markets.

Current Analysis described Sprint's move as "slightly positive," adding that the new price "is more palatable to prosumers and consumers during these tough economic times. ... These initiatives considerably reduce the cost barriers to adoption, increasing the carrier's potential consumer base." The firm also pointed out that Sprint is offering its 3G/4G USB Modem U300 for free with a two-year service contract and $50 mail-in rebate, down from an initial price of $149 in December.

Sprint representatives did not immediately return requests for comment on the price cut.

Sprint's actions comes just days after Verizon Wireless announced it completed a test of its forthcoming LTE 4G service in Boston and Seattle.

Clearwire, the carrier building the network on which Sprint is selling mobile WiMAX service, said it will offer 4G WiMAX service in more than 25 markets by year-end, reaching approximately 30 million people. Verizon Wireless has said it will commercially launch its LTE 4G network in up to 30 markets in 2010, covering 100 million people.

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