-- Sprint and Motorola(R) extend long-term network partnership
-- Customers enjoy industry's only national sub-second
push-to-talk experience with Nextel Direct Connect(R) and
OVERLAND PARK, Kan.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sprint (NYSE:S) reiterated its continuing commitment to the Nextel National Network and offering greater choice and flexibility to its customers. After careful review of the iDEN business, Sprint intends to retain and rejuvenate this important asset. As part of that commitment, Sprint and Motorola have extended their long-term partnership to provide enhanced network and infrastructure support, including software upgrades, and to provide the best products and services to customers.
"The iDEN network is a key differentiator for Sprint, as it allows us to offer products and services no other carrier in the industry can match. We continue to build on our support for our industry-leading push-to-talk Nextel Direct Connect franchise through our aggressive marketing efforts which exploit the unique features and functionality of the iDEN network," said Dan Hesse, CEO of Sprint. "In 2008, we expanded our product portfolio with a new line of Sprint phones, which combine industry-leading push-to-talk with the ultra-fast speed of Sprint Mobile Broadband (EV-DO Rev. A) and Sprint's largest voice coverage, offering greater choice and flexibility to our customers. We are focusing on plans to continue our push-to-talk leadership and bring more innovation to our customers going forward."
"Motorola has had a long and successful strategic relationship with Sprint, and we look forward to further strengthening this partnership," said Sanjay Jha, co-chief executive officer and CEO of Mobile Devices, Motorola. "With its unique experience and functionality, iDEN has a loyal customer base and will continue to be an important part of Motorola's portfolio. We actively support Sprint's initiative and share its commitment and enthusiasm for the iDEN network."
In addition to the Motorola agreement, Sprint's rejuvenation plans include these elements:
A Powerful Handset Line-up
On Nov. 2, Sprint will launch the Motorola i576, and later this year, will debut the BlackBerry(R) Curve(TM) 8350i smartphone. These devices allow customers to access the benefits of the only national sub-second call-set-up solution in the market, Nextel Direct Connect, Sprint's premier, industry-leading push-to-talk (PTT) offering, as well as Bluetooth and GPS. In addition, Sprint plans to launch a total of eight new Nextel Direct Connect handsets as part of its new device portfolio in 2009, with five expected to launch during the first half of the year.
With Nextel Direct Connect on Sprint handsets, customers can also enjoy lightning-quick broadband services, such as sending large data/video files and multicast capabilities. Sprint's industry-leading next-generation push-to-talk services are available on the LX400 by LG(R), Z400 by Samsung(R), Pro 200 by Sanyo(R), Pro 700 by Sanyo(R) and Motorola(R) Renegade(TM) V950 in select markets.
Refocusing Boost Mobile
In addition, Boost Mobile, Sprint's prepaid business, is being refocused to compete aggressively for customers impacted by the current economic environment with a lower per-minute rate and other attractive pricing options. Boost Mobile offers phones and pre-paid services with no long-term contracts, credit checks or activation fees, primarily on the Nextel National Network.
In early 2009, Boost Mobile plans to introduce Boost Unlimited on the iDEN network, offering a nationwide home calling area for one monthly fee - an excellent value in today's economic times.
Best-Ever Network Metrics with Feature Rich Business Solutions
"Exclusively on the Nextel National Network, customers have the largest selection of military-specification-compliant, rugged devices, as well as an ecosystem of rich business solutions including GPS, inventory and fleet management, dispatch operations and workforce management," said Danny Bowman, president of Sprint's iDEN business unit. "In addition, we have invested billions of dollars in the iDEN network over the past several years, adding thousands of cell sites to bolster capacity and coverage. As a result, our customers on the Nextel National Network enjoy the fewest number of dropped calls in the industry."
The Nextel National Network, performing at best-ever levels, serves the largest community of Nextel Direct Connect subscribers on the fastest national push-to-talk network, more than 16 million at the end of second quarter 2008. Sprint is the leading wireless provider for business (based on an independent survey of corporate-liable users) and also supports assigned sales and care representatives and vertical-solutions experts in each region of the country.
ABOUT SPRINT NEXTEL
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two wireless networks serving nearly 52 million customers at the end of the second quarter 2008; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. For more information, visit www.sprint.com.