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Thread: SouthernLinc strikes deal to add nationwide GSM/UMTS

  1. #1
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    SouthernLinc strikes deal to add nationwide GSM/UMTS

    http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/...ice/2013-03-12


    http://www.fiercewireless.com/press-...l-nationwide-v


    MVNE Prepaid Wireless Wholesale to supply connections
    March 12, 2013 | By Phil Goldstein


    Regional carrier SouthernLinc struck an agreement with MVNE Prepaid Wireless Wholesale to add nationwide GSM and UMTS service to its iDEN network footprint, though it is unclear exactly which GSM network SouthernLinc will use for the effort.

    SouthernLinc said the deal will allow it to provide its customers with iDEN push-to-talk service as well as high-speed data on GSM and UMTS networks. The announcement comes as Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) continues its shutdown of its iDEN network, an effort that is slated to be completed by the end the end of June.

    In December, SouthernLinc said it would continue to invest in its iDEN network despite Sprint's decision to turn off its iDEN network. At the time, SouthernLinc CEO Don Horsley promised the carrier would launch a "solution" that would allow it to continue offering nationwide service--the carrier's new agreement with Prepaid Wireless Wholesale appears to be that solution.

    In conjunction with the new offering, SouthernLinc said it expects to introduce a new dual-SIM smartphone from Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Motorola Mobility and a "suite of high-speed nationwide services in late spring 2013."

    SouthernLinc spokeswoman Lynda Swaney told FierceWireless that "under the terms of our agreement we cannot disclose the network the service will use." AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) and T-Mobile are the only national U.S. GSM carriers.

    SouthernLinc is the only other wireless carrier in the United States that operates an iDEN network (besides Sprint), although there are millions of iDEN subscribers in markets across the globe. In the United States, SouthernLinc maintains 850 towers in parts of Alabama, Georgia, Florida and Mississippi, and counts around 150,000 subscribers.

    Swaney said the carrier's GSM/UMTS service will be bundled with the carrier's traditional regional iDEN services and that pricing is not yet available. She also declined to comment specifically on what kind of "high-speed nationwide services" SouthernLinc will offer, but said they will "will provide the unique combination of the best in class iDEN PTT, the reliability of the SouthernLinc Wireless network, and nationwide high-speed data, voice and messaging services."

    Sprint is working to move its remaining iDEN subscribers onto its CDMA network. To smooth that transition, Sprint has launched a PTT offering from Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) dubbed CDMA Direct Connect. Sprint was able to recapture 51 percent of leaving Nextel postpaid subscribers to its Sprint platform, down from 59 percent in the third quarter; Sprint has also said that this recapture rate will decrease as the shutdown nears.

    Meanwhile, AT&T has taken aim squarely at Sprint's remaining iDEN subscribers (just 2.08 million at the end of the fourth quarter) by launching its Enhanced Push-to-Talk offering as well as new smartphones for the service.

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    Oddly I haven't seen a single iDen tower removed anywhere around me yet. Every one is still physically up. Not sure what's going to happen to all of these iDEN cell sites come June but that is just a few months away so they better start moving quickly.
    Sprint user since 1997

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    Quote Originally Posted by larryt510 View Post
    Oddly I haven't seen a single iDen tower removed anywhere around me yet. Every one is still physically up. Not sure what's going to happen to all of these iDEN cell sites come June but that is just a few months away so they better start moving quickly.
    They have actually physically decommissioned a cell site here leaving a bare guy tower, ironically enough the site has been leased by SouthernLINC to have iDEN installed

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    This is a very exciting thing for us LINC customer's. It's seeming like they will actually let us use more than likely AT&T's UMTS 4G network for data IN MARKET!! And their reliable iDEN for PTT and Voice. Wonder if SMS will still travel via iDEN or GSM. We don't have MMS capability so hopefully they can use GSM for SMS/MMS..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wireless Junkie View Post
    It's seeming like they will actually let us use more than likely AT&T's UMTS 4G network for data IN MARKET!!
    Nope, it's looking like SouthernLinc's GSM/UMTS affiliate, Prepaid Wireless Wholesale, LLC rides on t-mobile's network. I know that's a let-down to be sure.
    Thrill me...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan702 View Post
    Nope, it's looking like SouthernLinc's GSM/UMTS affiliate, Prepaid Wireless Wholesale, LLC rides on t-mobile's network. I know that's a let-down to be sure.
    it's still way better than anything they have now and let's be honest EDGE is way better than anything iDen could ever do, it'll be like going from Dialup to a good DSL connection.
    Left: Verizon Unlimited LTE, Right: WideOpenWest 500/50

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    That's very true, but I've read on more the one occasion Wireless Junkie lament t-mobile's lack of coverage compared to at&t in his neck of the woods.

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    Nextel Mexico has 1700MHz UMTS (like T-Mobile) along with their iDEN service. Their UMTS phones somehow provide PTT. Perhaps they'll use similar equipment? Not an exciting selection, though, but it's something.
    http://www.nextel.com.mx/equipos/index.htm
    Carriers I've used: Sprint, T-Mobile, Cricket, AT&T, Verizon, Page Plus, Virgin Mobile, Movistar, AT&T Mexico, Telcel, Straight Talk, RingPlus.
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    SouthernLinc Strikes Deal To Add Nationwide GSM/UMTS

    I am a former Nextel user. Does SouthernLINC roam onto Nextel sites in non-SouthernLINC areas currently?

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    Just switched over last week from Nextel iDEN to Sprint's CDMA PTT using Kyocera Torques. Prior to the switch, our Nextel iDEN service was absolutely flawless, I assume because they have not decommissioned any towers around here that I know of (LA, Ventura, Kern Counties), and with so few people left on iDEN, the network was amazingly strong. Can't even recall the last time a call dropped or got garbled.

    So far the Sprint Direct Connect in our area is decent, better than AT&T's or Verizon's PTT, but Sprints CMDA PTT is still not as good as Nextel. We have spotty 3G signal here, which really hurts Sprint Direct Connect's performance (connection speed, reliability of connections, & audio quality all take a big hit when 3G is weak).

    The Torques are nice for "smartphones", although the early models have been quite glitch so far (random lockups & reboots, no mic in speakerphone mode). Kind of like Sprint Direct Connect itself...the Torques work well when they are working, problem is, neither works well all the time like Nextel did.

    I'm adjusting, but I really miss the simplicity of my old i580 & i365, and the bulletproof PTT on iDEN. I do wish they had kept just enough iDEN gear in each tower to handle only the PTT traffic using iDEN, forcing all voice & data to go over CDMA 3G or LTE 4G. I think they probably could have rebuilt the network that way, had they wanted to, and I know for a fact the PTT on iDEN is still superior to the PTT on CDMA. It's too late to turn back now, but I surely will miss Nextel phones, bulletproof PTT, & reliable, WYSIWYG network performance.

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    Sprint must have really pissed off SouthernLinc... If they parted IDEN as friends, I'd have figured they would have inked a nationwide roaming deal with Sprint. A dual mode CDMA/IDEN PowerSource-type phone that could do PTT while on home IDEN service, with QChat with IDEN interconnect while on Sprint's CDMA network (IIRC they already had Nextel-to-SoLinc PTT working before the end, even QChat to SoLinc)--even offering 3G data via Sprint CDMA on an MVNO basis in SoLinc home areas wouldn't have been a stretch had they developed a handset that could offer IDEN and CDMA voice service (that was always what I didn't understand about the PowerSource phones--seemed like it could be enabled with a software upgrade)

    --Nat

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    I am a former Nextel user. Does SouthernLINC roam onto Nextel sites in non-SouthernLINC areas currently?

    yes SL can roam onto Nextel towers as of right now BUT after sprint turns off IDEN for good SL wont be able to roam after that...i heard that SL is going be a nationwide carrier.

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    SouthernLinc strikes deal to add nationwide GSM/UMTS

    Quote Originally Posted by cricket101 View Post
    ...i heard that SL is going be a nationwide carrier.
    Be still my beating heart! Hopefully not a delayed April Fools Day entry ;-)

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    Motorola IRONROCK XT626 Android Smartphone

    I was looking online at the Motorola IRONROCK XT626 Android Smartphone. It looks like it is both GSM and iDEN. I was trying to determine if it will also do Direct Talk in addition to Direct Connect, but I can seem to see anything about that. Does anybody know how or where I can go to find that out?

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    Here's a mid=2012 press release by Motorola, maybe some links there you can follow:

    http://mediacenter.motorola.com/cont...3&NewsAreaId=2

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