Sprint Reveals EVO 4G Pricing: $199 Phone, $10 extra for WiMAX, $30 for Pocketspot Capability

When we heard about plans for a big Sprint HTC EVO 4G shindig in New York tonight, we sort of figured we’d hear some more details about the first WiMAX smartphone for the U.S. market. Turns out it will be available June 4. So what will you pay for a handheld device that can surf at either 3G or 4G speeds, and can also act as a portable Wi-Fi router or Pocketspot for up to eight additional devices?

Now we know: According to a Sprint blog, the pricing for the phone itself is $199 (after rebate and with a 2-year contract). To get the standard Sprint “everything data” package (unlimited mobile-to-mobile calling, unlimited text, unlimited web and 450 anytime minutes) it will cost you $79.99 per month, a $10 “premium” fee for having WiMAX support whether you use 4G or not. To enable the EVO’s pocketspot capabilities will run you another $29.99 per month, a decided discount from standalone Pocketspots like Sprint’s Overdrive, which was priced at $60 a month last we checked.

With the EVO 4G’s dual video cams, superb screen and other bells and whistles it seems like a great deal at $199 for the phone. While we’re not thrilled by the emergence of a “premium” fee for WiMAX access, it’s a good guess that when Verizon launches its Long Term Evolution (LTE) 4G networks later this year you will see a similar “3G Plus” pricing plan. The $30 a month for pocketspot support is a huge bargain when you consider how much it would cost to upgrade as many as eight additional devices to 4G speeds. We’d compare it to AT&T’s costs for data tethering off an iPhone, but unfortunately that feature is… not yet supported.

With the EVO intro, Sprint and its WiMAX partner Clearwire stole the show at CTIA. Can Sprint steal the summer smartphone thunder from the expected iPhone upgrade in June? Having the EVO available early will help. Let the smartphone games begin!

About Paul Kapustka

Paul Kapustka is a longtime journalist who has spent more than two decades covering the information technology business, Paul most recently has been focusing on mobility and how it has changed the computing and collaborative landscape. His newest project outside Mobile Enterprise 360 is a research and analysis operation called WiFi Journal. He is also editor in chief of Mobile Sports Report, which covers the intersection of mobile technology and sports business. Paul is also the founder of Sidecut Reports, a research firm that covered the emergence of 4G technology in the cellular marketplace.

Comments

  1. Looking forward to reading more about the EVO 4G. The HTC phone looks great and I’m eager about seeing how much of a difference 4G makes over 3G. Now, if only I can get out of my iPhone contract. 🙂

  2. Now compare apples to apples ………..

    VZW ….. unlimited text, web, talk, and hotspot ……… $109 / month

    Sprint ……… Simply everything, Evo fee, Hotspot fee, $99 +$10+$30 …… Hmmmm ……. $139/ month

    VZW has much better service and WAY better coverage.

    VZW has released plans to flood the market with Android devices over the not so far future. Cell phones get out dated quick with new technology seemingly popping up out of no where. How long will the EVO shine? How long will you be stuck with a contract thru Sprint? Will it be worth paying the Sprint EVO luxury fee for the next year or two on a phone that will have direct competeing phones with no additional charge tacked on to use them. Ya there is a 4G network being built. What percentage of users will even get a glimpse on 4G on their EVO over the life of their contract? Mr Hesse, Sprint CEO, said that 4G would be free like the switch from HDTV from analog. Stating that they could buy the Gigabyte cheaper over 4G. Then launch the phone and add a free because they assume we will use it more. Come on, this was Sprint’s real chance to get in the game with the “Big Boys”.

    I have been a loyal Sprint customer for years just waiting for them to step out with a phone like this. The goal is to now draw new customers, and in doing so they are stepping all over the current loyal ones that have been thru the ringer with them.

  3. How can sprint control the hotspot feature? Once you have the phone won’t there be apps to utilize the phones hardware for free?