It’s no secret that cellular carrier Sprint has been struggling for a bit. No buyout news at the moment, but in an effort to raise some cash the company will be selling off some of its cellular towers to private equity company TowerCo.
The exact number of towers hasn’t been finalized, but it’s expected to be around 3,300 which would be most of the towers they own.
The deal could get Sprint around $670 million, which could be used to pay down some of its $24 billion debt and I’d imagine another chuck of it will go towards it’s WiMAX venture with Clearwire.
In order to keep it’s cell business open, Sprint will lease back use of the towers from TowerCo but no lease prices were mentioned.
Look for more info on the deal to be announced within the next 90 days.
Korean communications company SK Telecom has announced that they are in talk with US cell carrier Sprint about acquiring the struggling company.
Sprint is currently the third largest cell carrier in the US, so the move would give SK Telecom a pretty big footprint in the US assuming there wouldn’t be a regulations issues with foreign ownership of the company.
What would SK Telecom do to revive Sprint? We may get to find out.
If you are in the market for an inexpensive cellphone but want more than just a basic model, the price of the Palm Centro with AT&T has dropped $30.
Now, after rebates and signing a new two-year contract with AT&T, the Centro can be yours for $70.
I can’t say I’m a fan of Palm devices lately, but if you’re in the market for an inexpensive smartphone it might be worth checking out.
Last night at 8pm (they pushed it back a couple of hours from the planned 6pm) Apple engineers took .Mac offline and began cutting over to the new MobileMe service.
The upgrade seemed to go okay, then things got really slow and the service went offline again which is where it sits at the moment; if you try and go to me.com it redirects you to the product info page instead of giving you a sign-in page.
No word on when it will be live again, but I’m sure the folks are aiming for ASAP.
UK cell carrier O2 recently began a pre-order program for the upcoming iPhone 3G to allow current customers a shot at securing one before it releases on Friday.
Apparently response was VERY high and the 16GB version quickly sold out and the 8GB version followed before long.
Any still interested in getting an iPhone 3G from O2 is told to “Come back on 10 July for more information.”
Maybe more stock will be made available? We’ll see, I suppose.
To watch the page for yourself check it out here.
Thanks to Bell Canada, Canadian cellphone users will soon be able to get their hands on the Samsung Instinct touchscreen handset that’s been reviewing so well. If they don’t mind using Bell Canada.
The Instinct will have the same custom interface as the US version so it will compete pretty well against the iPhone 3G coming to Rogers, but Bell Canada is hoping to best Rogers with their data plan pricing.
Look for the Instinct to be available in stores in Canada on August 8th for $150 with a three-year contract , $250 with a two-year contract, $400 with a one-year contract, and $450 without any contract.
Lots of people are big fans of OpenTable for easily making restaurant reservations via the Internet but the page is a bit big when trying to use it on a small device like, say, an iPhone.
To help make using their service easier for those people, OpenTable has released a version of their webpage formatted for mobile devices called OpenTable Mobile.
It’s the same service, just using a better layout for small screens.
Jeff Jordan, CEO of Opentable, says “with OpenTable Mobile, we can now deliver the convenience of online reservations to diners who are on the road or out on the town…now mobile users can take the power of OpenTable.com with them wherever they go, to instantly find and book available tables at more than 8,500 restaurants.”
To use OpenTable Mobile, just point your browser to:
Check out the full press release here if you’re interested.
According to Phone Arena, they’ve managed to get their hands on Verizon’s release schedule for phones they’ll be offering this year.
If this info is accurate, here’s what you can expect to see from them:
- CDMA versions of the Touch Diamond and Touch Pro will be coming, possibly under the Verizon name (no date mentioned)
- Motorola Blaze should be out before September 22nd under the model number ZN4 (the ZN indicates that it will be a multimedia phone)
- Motorola VU30 will appear before the Blaze, probably in mid August
- Nokia 2605 under the name Mirage should be out on August 8th.
- Nokia 7205 Intrigue (no date mentioned)
- Palm treo 800w (no date mentioned)
- Samsung SCH-U310 (no date mentioned)
- Samsung SCH-U430 in late August
- Samsung SCH-U440 on August 8th
- UTStarcom TXT8010 in August
Again, just a rumor for now. We’ll see if any of these pan out.
Sprint put a lot of money into promoting the new Samsung Instinct touchscreen phone and so far so good–the Instinct is the best selling EV-DO device ever resulting in product shortages in some parts of the country.
John Garcia, president of Sprint’s Wireless Division, says “we had high expectations going into the launch so our initial order to Samsung was the largest for any Sprint EVDO handset to date.”
According to some Sprint customers who presumably were not paid for their comments and purchased for the device like good boys and girls, even though their comments appear in the press release itself, it’s a hit:
- It’s awesome. I have been a Sprint customer for six years. This device offers every single Sprint feature down to the smallest and jam-packs them all into one device. It is just an amazing device. – William Leak, Millville, NJ
- Instinct offers easy access to everything I need when I’m traveling or at work… even my music! It’s everything I want in a phone and more. – Stanley Long, Philadelphia, PA
- I purchased it because it’s the hottest phone out there and I love the huge screen. – Stephan Boyett, West Orange, NJ
- I was out of contract and stayed with Sprint because of this phone! Also your everything plan includes everything, not like AT&T. – Daphne Wilson, White Plains, NY
- I was blown away the first time I saw the device. The more I play with the device, the more I love it. – Jennifer Hayes, Edison, NJ
For more info check out the entire press release here.
The next Palm Treo, dubbed 800w, will finally be released in July on Sprint’s network.
Features of the 800w will include:
- Windows Mobile 6.1 OS
- 256MB of ROM, 128MB of RAM
- 1.3 megapixel camera
- Built-in Wi-Fi and GPS
- LCD with 320 x 320 resolution
Corporate customers will be able to get their hands on it on July 9th, while consumers will have to wait until July 13th.
Without signing a contract it will set you back $599.