Future Airave Device support?

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81 comments
  • I know this is dangerously venturing into "forward looking statements" / vapourware, so please take it with a grain of salt, but some of the data we have seen around the impact of the LTE deployment in terms of coverage improvement is pretty impressive.

    Granted, it will take some time, and they have to execute, but from what I have seen and heard Sprint are VERY serious about network improvements, and this should be a big step forward. 

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  • Will this improvement be for those with LTE phones only or will non-LTE phones somehow see some improvement too?

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  • Sprint charges $129 for an Airave if you have a sprint retail device with a two year contract. They do not make much money on these AFAICT, if anything they lose money or break even.

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  • Scott.

    Doesn't sprint charge something like 5 bucks a month to use.  Bandwidth is cheap.  The other 2 cell providers don't charge a fee for using there device.  That is likely what he is referring to.

    Michael,

    No befit for non LTE devices since they are like the wimax using diff freq.  It is like the conversion from analog to digital.  digital improved converge and allowed more channels part of the reason cell phones got so much cheaper.  This is a similar change.

     

    Thanks

    Robert

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  • Sprint have confirmed that the Network Vision deployment will offer significant coverage improvements for all Sprint devices. It is more than just an improvement / deployment for LTE.

    Sprint does offer an option where you pay an additional MRC and then your Airave usage is not counted against your minutes.

    We are still working on the commercial elements our Airave offering. There are some challenges around cost, but I expect we will work something out that will be good.

    That is after all what we do. :)

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  • Robert, I think that $5 might be for an old plan they had (maybe with the 1st generation units?). I don't believe there is a per month charge for the Airave 2 units. You just get charged for minutes of use as if it were a normal cell call (and data if you use the Airave 2's 3G capabilities). Can you confirm this Scott?

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  • This is what I know about Sprint's retail offering:

     

    * Airave is $129.99 with 2-yr contract. $279.99 at "full retail price", but they do not sell it without a contract.

    * The contract itself isn't really a contract - no recurring fee, no ETF, no service commitments. It's more like the $129.99 is the price of the device and includes 2 years of activation.

    * After 2 years is up, you start paying $4.99 MRC to keep the Airave active.

    * Up to 50 devices can connect to the Airave access point at once, although only 6 can use it simultaneously (for active calls, data sessions, etc). 

    * Unlimited voice plan is $25/mo. The way it works is Sprint 'whitelists' ESNs that are to be part of this plan, so I guess potentially up to 50 people could get unlimited voice over an Airave, although they must all be on the same Sprint account. There is no option for unlimited data plans.

    We are looking into the MRC options.

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  • That may be Sprint's publication of the Airave arrangement, but - when I bought my 1st gen on eBay (I didn't know better then) I paid $5 per month in order to get it activated.  When that one died, I called them and asked about replacing it since our service at home was incredibly bad, and they sent me the 2nd gen for free, no monthly charge, but they'll charge me for it if I don't return it when we've no longer got a contract with them for at least one phone.  We use it, and it draws from our monthly minutes, which is fine.  There would be a charge to get unlimited minutes through the Airave, but we don't need it.  I think this is one of those cases where if you say you're going to have to look for other service because coverage at that location is lousy, "retention" kicks in to keep the customer.  You can use a web app to configure who can connect through it, but where we live, this is not an issue.  What was an issue was that Family Locator was totally confused as to 'where' you were, but they've had that fixed now, at least for us.

    I keep reading that the Verizon version doesn't have to be activated.  That when you plug it in it just works, though you can't restrict access through it to specific phones without activating it, but it will still work.  It's been a while since I set up our Airave, but I believe it would not work until I talked to Sprint to get it authorized.

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  • Scott,

    Assuming ting follows sprints contracts terms.  I am assuming the $129.99 is for the 1st 2 year leases.  After that you pay $5 a month.  If you pay the full retail price is it always free?

    As for the data plan who in there right mind would be using there data plan over one of these boxes when they likely have wifi sitting there.

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  • All...I would hold off on speculating on what Ting will and won't do. Let's give Scott & company some time to evaluate, negotiate, and ultimately develop their offering. I'm sure it will be fair and in our best interests. 

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  • Sarcasm...doesn't work with text.   I know my Ting phone works with my office Airave

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  • Kinda stinky though, that they charge a customer anything because THEY failed to provide coverage.

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  • Enough with the sniping. I don't live that far out in the boonies, being about 5 minutes from Denison University. Because of the way the area grew, I am THE LAST house on our cable run and the SECOND TO LAST on our landline wire. NO CARRIER has decent coverage at our house. At one time I had phones from 3 carriers which I schlepped about for a week before we left Verizon for Sprint. The primary reason we left was because Sprint phones worked in our high school and our daughter was in enough extra-curriculars that we needed the service. T-mobile and Alltel also worked but they had other dead spots. Verizon and AT&T were dead in the school. I ticked off one dad at the high school who was mouthing off about the school blocking cell signals since his Verizon phone had no bars, by holding up my phone and telling him Sprint worked fine.

    The joke is that the reason we even had that good coverage at the high school and at Denison was that some Sprint higher up had had a daughter attending Denison and he had them put in a tower. ALL OF THE BIG CARRIERS have a femtocell available. Why do you suppose that is? I would love to have T-mobile's wifi calling if they had somewhat decent cell coverage but around here they do not, and I am still hoping Republic Wireless can get their act together, but I'm afraid that will be a while yet. And please don't give me the VOIP or SIP lecture. I could deal with it but my husband and daughter simply will not.

    So just realize that no carrier has good coverage everywhere and use your head in choosing service. Prioritize what you need and make a choice. Ting may or may not be it. Most of us started out wanting voice coverage, then became enamoured of apps and data. You choose what you need and that your wallet will cover.

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  • And that was NOT one, giant run-on paragraph when I composed it.

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  • Scott,

    Sprint only offers the Airave in certain areas, not everywhere with Sprint coverage. Would Ting's offering have the same restrictions?

    Unfortunately, I am in a Sprint area without Airave availability. I would be willing to test a Ting unit, though. There are several cellular dead spots here at work.

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  • This woudl be a deal breaker for me.  I purchased the airave 2 years ago and need it in my house to have signal.  

    Is there anymore update's to this...

     

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  • There is no real update to this, other than I expect to have more info later this week. As stated earlier, I expect to offer support for new and used Airaves in the near future. More details as soon as we have them, sorry for the delay!

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  • Bruce: our Airaves will have the same restrictions as Sprint's, which I believe means they will work anywhere in the US.

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  • Scott,

    Unfortunately, Sprint has restrictions on Airave. A customer can check for coverage at  http://www.sprint.com/landings/airave_eligibility/index.html?ECID=vanity:airavecoverage

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  • I wonder why these restrictions exist. Must involve a lawyer. 

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  • I would be interested to know too.

    We resolved our cellular signal issue in our office at work by adding a cellular extender. 

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  • Count me as an interested Airave customer. Some tower issues in my area that have been going on for months have me considering jumping ship because I can't reliably make calls in my house at all anymore. My wife (Virgin Mobile) customer is in the same boat for the same reason. Much as I don't want to give up Ting and go back to "Big Wireless" (sad just thinking about it!), Sprint's problems in my area might make it unavoidable. Frankly, I'd rather pay more to Ting to solve the issue than move to one of the other 3 majors.

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  • I should add that I don't have a smartphone, I'm talking about strictly voice/SMS issues in my case, with no app-based VOIP solution to the problem.

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  • It seems that lots of Sprint / Ting customers have signal strength problems in their homes.  I switched from AT&T to Ting, but am really frustrated to go from having several bars of good reception with AT&T to 1 bar at best with Sprint/Ting.  Sprint's coverage map confirms that the signal here is weak.  I just checked the Sprint Airave coverage / availability link from Bruce's message on 8/14 and confirmed that my address is eligible.  My wife is questioning the wisdom of my decision to switch to Ting, so I would LOVE to be a beta tester for this device.

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  • Hi all, we are a making slow but steady progress. We should have something for you in September, if not sooner. Thanks for your patience!

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  • John, it will be worth the wait.  When we moved into our current house we had no bars inside and one bar outside with sprint.  I put in the Airave and now have all bars through out the house and even some signal around the house.  You will need to have nice internet connection like cable to hook the airave up to.  A couple of things I did not care for with sprint was that after I bought the unit I still had to pay them $5 a month to use the airave that used My internet connection to work.  Also I think they still counted minuets used through the airave, not sure on that though as our plan was unlimited.  

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  • Sprint seems to have cleared up the tower issues in my area as of a couple days ago, so I'm back to being able to make & receive calls in the house. That said, I'm still interested in the Airave for a bit of peace of mind if something happens again.

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  • Another quick update as I know many of you are waiting, we made good progress this week and I hope to offer the Airave in the next 2-3 weeks, barring any exceptional circumstances. Just working out some final details with Sprint. Thanks for your patience!

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  • For current Sprint Airave users waiting to join Ting: Am I going to be able to keep the same unit and just swap over to Ting, or am I going to have to send this one back to Sprint and get another one from Ting anyway?

    Our Blackberries are dying slow horrible deaths and I want to ditch them and activate with Ting, but if I will have to do a two-step with the Airave I'll wait a few more weeks.

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  • We are hoping to be able to allow existing / used devices be used. This may not be supported out of the gate. We have technically achieved this in the beta, and we are working on operationalizing this process with Sprint.

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