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Boost Mobile Announces Two LTE Phones Launching Mar. 7

Together with the launch of Virgin Mobile's first LTE phone today, Sprint also announced that its other prepaid brand, Boost Mobile would be getting not one, but two LTE phones. Boost users will have to wait until March 7, 2013 however. That's the day that the $299.99 HTC One SV (on the left in the image) and the $199.99 Boost Force are slated to land on boostmobile.com.

The HTC One SV is quite similar in specs to Virgin's Samsung Galaxy Victory 4g LTE which is available now at virginmobileusa.com for the same $299.99. They both have LTE, 1.2 Mhz dual-core processors, 800 x 480 px screens and 5 MP main cameras. The HTC seems a little higher speced with a  larger (4.3 vs 4.0 inch) screen and a 1.6 vs 1.3 MP front camera. However the Galaxy Victory runs the newer Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS while the HTC SV is stuck, probably forever through official chanels, with the older Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Here are the HTC SV's full specs:
  • DISPLAY: 4.3-inch, 480 x 800 px super LCD-2 touch screen with Corning® Gorilla® Glass 2
  • CPU: Qualcomm® S4 1.2 GHz, Dual-core
  • PLATFORM: Android™ 4.0 with HTC Sense™
  • MEMORY: Total storage : 8 GB, available capacity varies
  • RAM: 1 GB DDR2
  • NETWORK: 850/1900 CDMA/EV-DO, 1900 Mhz LTE
  • LOCATION: Assisted GPS, Digital compass
  • SENSORS: G-Sensor, Proximity sensor, e-Compass, Ambient light sensor
  • CONNECTIVITY: 3.5 mm stereo audio jack, Bluetooth with aptX™ enabled (Bluetooth® 4.0)
  • Wi-Fi®: IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n (802.11n 2.4GHz and 5GHz)
  • NFC capable: (Google wallet compatible)
  • SOUND ENHANCEMENT: Studio-quality sound with Beats Audio™ built in
  • CAMERA WITH HTC IMAGESENSE™: 5 megapixel camera with auto focus, LED flash, and BSI sensor (for better low-light captures), F2.0 aperture and 28mm lens, 1080p video recording, 1.6 megapixel front camera (720p for video recording), Dedicated HTC ImageChip for fast focus and clearer, sharper shots
  • VideoPic: Shoot video and capture pictures at the same time
  • Continuous shooting: One-press continuous shooting captures up to 60 shots at 4fps
  • Smart Flash: Five levels of flash automatically set by distance to subject
  • Video stabilization: Removes shakiness for smooth, professional videos
  • Slow motion video capture and playback
  • Audio supported formats:
  • Playback: .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .wma (Windows Media Audio 9)
  • Recording: .amr
  • Video supported formats:
  • Playback: .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .wmv (Windows Media Video 9), .avi (MP4 ASP and MP3)
  • Recording: .mp4
  • BATTERY: Removable, 1800 mAh
  • SIZE: 128 x 66.9 x 9.20 mm
  • WEIGHT: 122 grams 
The Boost Force is a bit of a mystery. It's made by ZTE but there doesn't seem to be any information about it on the ZTE site. Boost Mobile's press release announcing the two LTE phones only lists these specs:
  • Android™ 4.0 
  • Dual-mode 3G/4G LTE
  • 5MP camera (1MP front-facing)
  • Wi-Fi and GPS enabled
So things like internal memory and RAM, whether the camera has a flash or auto-focus, battery capacity and whether the battery is removable or not are anybody's guess at this point. 

Both phones can be only activated on Boost's $55/month Android Monthly Unlimited plan which includes unlimited talk and messaging as well as unlimited data with the first 2.5 GB of data per month delivered at full speeds with data throttled to 256 Kbps or less for the rest of the month once the 2.5 GB threshold is exceeded.

For every six on-time payments, the cost of Boost Mobile’s $55/month plan shrinks by $5, eventually getting down to a minimum of $40 a month after 18 on time payments.

Sprint's press release doesn't say anything about tethering. Hopefully it will be available for the same $10/month upcharge as it is on Boosts's 4G WiMAX phones.

LTE is two or three times faster than WiMAX and 5 to 30 times faster than Boost's EV-DO 3G.  Sprint plans to eventually have LTE available across their entire network but for now it's limited to the following markets:

Anderson, Ind.; Atlanta; Athens, Ga.; Austin, Texas; Baltimore; Barnstable/Hyannis/Mid-Cape, Mass.; Boston; Bryan/College Station, Texas; Calhoun, Ga.; Carrollton, Ga.; Chicago/Naperville/Joliet, Ill.; Clark County, Va./Jefferson County, W.Va.; Columbia, Tenn.; Dallas; Emporia, Kan.; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Fort Worth, Texas; Framingham, Mass.; Franklin County, Pa.; Gainesville, Ga.; Gary, Ind.; Gettysburg, Pa.; Granbury/Hood County, Texas; Hagerstown, Md./Martinsburg, W.Va.; Harrisburg/Carlisle/Hershey, Pa.; Harrisonburg, Va.; Houston; Huntsville, Texas; Hutchinson, Kan.; Indianapolis/Carmel, Ind.; Kankakee/Bradley/Bourbonnais, Ill.; Kansas City, Kan./Mo.; Lawrence, Kan.; Manhattan/Junction City, Kan.; McPherson, Kan.; Muncie, Ind.; New Bedford/Fall River, Mass.; Newnan, Ga.; Peabody, Mass.; Rockford, Ill.; Rome, Ga.; Salina, Kan.; San Antonio; Santa Rosa/Petaluma, Calif.; Sedalia, Mo.; Shenandoah/Page Counties, Va.; South Bend/Mishawaka, Ind.; Southern PR: Ponce/Coamo/Guayama, Puerto Rico; St. Joseph, Mo.; Topeka, Kan.; Vallejo/Fairfield, Calif.; Waco, Texas; Waukegan/Lake County, Ill.; Western PR: Aguadilla/Isabela/Cabo Rojo/Mayagüez, Puerto Rico; Wichita Falls, Texas; Wichita, Kan.; Winchester, Va.; York/Hanover, Pa.

Sources: Sprint, HTC


Comment Page :
  1. About time some real 4g LTE on prepaid!!!! I'm switching now

    1. I would wait if I were you. There isn't nearly enough native Sprint LTE coverage and neither Boost nor Virgin will roam onto other carrier's LTE networks. Unless, that is, you live in an LTE coverage area and never leave it.

    2. Boost Mobile make sense if you plan to keep your phone for more than 12 months or more.

      As for the ZTE phone, I would pass based on past poor reviews of ZTE smartphones on Boost. ZTE makes cheap phones for a reason.

      I would prefer the HTC except they make very small screens. The problem with display size is that it is measured diagonally as opposed to giving us the entire display area. A tall and narrow phone (like HTC products) will have large diagonal screens but due to its narrow width, you don't get a lot of real estate.

    3. Tampa has got 4G LTE data. So I am definitely upgrading to the HTC when it comes out.

  2. It has been almost a year and that is all the markets Sprint has to show for!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Someone I meant anybody please tell me why is Dan Hease the CEO still has a job. That's why I am sticking with T-Mobile.

    1. T-Mobile is just as pathetic. Even if you live in a 4G area, the speed is likely to be highly variable with inconsistant signal strength. I live in the Washington, DC area and lasted two weeks with T-Mobile before going back to Page Plus. 4G technology coverage isn't there yet.

    2. Can you use LTE with prepaid plans from any other nationwide carrier?
      Tmobile has one market? Two?

      Maybe they should give Dan a bonus instead of firing him ;-)

    3. DC area has excellent, generally consistent 4G LTE coverage from Verizon, but you have to pay for it.
      You won't get any 4G speeds on PagePlus. They only give you slow Vzw 3G data, and Verizon has surprising voice and 3G data coverage holes in the high-density areas of Rossyln and Marc Center, to name 2. Tmobile works perfectly in those areas, and so does Sprint.
      AT&T has the fastest *average* data coverage on prepaid in the DC area, but you get more dropped calls when you are driving. Tmobile 3G is faster on an AT&T iPhone than AT&T with a good 1900 MHz signal, but there are too many places that still don't get Tmobile 1900 MHz 3G. Sprint/Clear WiMax is pretty fast, but just as spotty over the whole metro area as Tmobile, probably more so.
      Pick your poison; at least you have choices.
      Or, just pay Vzw for LTE and forget about prepaid for now.

    4. The markets on the list are the ones that Sprint has announced are completed. There are may more markets that have between 50-89% of their LTE sites operational which haven't been pronounced as completed yet including Chicago, Baltimore and Boston. See S4GRU for details.

      Sprint is making good progress. A year is nothing when it comes to a major nationwide network upgrade like this.

    5. Here is the Sprint status update, tower by tower, for your area:

    6. Engadget reported Feb 18 that Sprint LTE is live in parts of FL; NYC; and Washington DC.

    7. I live in Sacramento, CA -- and NO 4G LTE service from Sprint. Btw, I have VM and the 3G is crappy. For some unexplained reason, Vacaville and Fairfield (30 to 40 miles west of Sacramento) has 4G, but not the capital of CA. Go figure.

      If you are unhappy with signal strength, you might want to look into a wireless booster. Wilson Electronics is huge in this are and lots of truck drivers use W.E. products to sizeable signal gains.

  3. When LTE is fully up and running in NYC I may consider Boost for the true unlimited data (although throttled).

    Does Boost's prices include tax?

    1. Depends on the state. I pay no taxes or fees on Boost airtime here in California.

      If your state imposes a sales tax or e911 fee on prepaid airtime you will have to pay it whether you buy top up cards at a retail store or pay on the Boost site with a credit or debit card.

  4. I don't know who your source of all this info is. I have yet to see any of these phone appear on Boost Mobile's website.

  5. My source (listed at the bottom of the post) is a Sprint press release. The phones aren't on the Boost site because they won't be released until Mar 7 and today is the 6th.

  6. Just ordered my HTC today. Can't wait to get it.

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