Sprint plans to initially release the new Evo in parts of Texas, Georgia, Florida (just Miami), Massachusetts, Washington, Colorado, New York, Northern California and the Washington, D.C. metro area (see update below). The phone goes on sale at 8:00 a.m. local time on Thursday, May 18 in Sprint Stores.
Why those cities and not others? “They were selected based on the size of our customer base in each market and the relative benefit to those customers and to Sprint,” a Sprint spokesperson told Mashable.
Sprint’s rollout of its high-speed LTE network may certainly be a factor, since the phone needs LTE for customers to enjoy its full benefits.
The rep also said New York and California weren’t shut out of the launch, and that Sprint was working on bringing the new Evo to those markets.
However, it’s pretty clear the locations were strongly influenced to how Sprint will be rolling out its LTE network, which is virtually non-existent now. Sprint has said it plans to bring bring LTE to big chunks of the country (approximately 123 million people) this year, with the aim of having a nationwide network (250 million peopl) by 2013.
Sprint had said Georgia, Texas, Baltimore and Missouri would be getting LTE by “mid-2012,” so it makes sense that some of those areas would be the first to get the HTC Evo 4G LTE. The other areas are probably strong contenders to get LTE soon after that.
While the HTC Evo 4G LTE is a flagship phone for Sprint, it’s not the company’s first LTE device. The LG Viper actually holds that title. Sprint also recently unveiled a Tri-Fi Hotspot that connects to LTE as well as 3G and WiMax networks.
Are you considering picking up an HTC Evo 4G LTE phone from Sprint? How much does LTE matter to you? Let us know in the comments.
Update: At about the same time this article was published, Sprint announced that New York and California would be part of the initial launch.
BONUS: A Tour of the HTC Evo 4G LTE
HTC Evo 4G LTE
The HTC Evo 4G LTE will be Sprint's second LTE phone. It'll be available in the spring for $199.99.