MetroPCS Expands 4G Footprint

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Dallas - MetroPCS expanded its 4G LTE (Long-Term Evolution) network to the Boston, New York City and Sacramento areas, bringing coverage to a total of nine metro areas since the launch of the carrier's first LTE market in September.

Other markets currently online are Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and San Francisco. The company plans further expansion later this year and into early next year into such areas as Atlanta, Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando and Tampa.

The prepaid-service carrier, which offers unlimited use for a flat-rate with no annual contract, offers only one device equipped with LTE. That's the Samsung Craft feature phone at $299 after $50 instant rebate in the carrier's stores and website. It's the first LTE-equipped phone in the U.S.

Data travels over MetroPCS's 1.7/2.1GHz AWS-band network and over the carrier's 1.9GHz CDMA 1x network. Voice calls also travel over the CDMA network. The phone, however, does not provide simultaneous voice and data sessions.

The Craft features 3.3-inch AMOLED touchscreen with slide-from-the-side QWERTY keyboard. Other features include WiFi, A/V playback, upgraded MetroNavigator service that adds voice-activated turn-by-turn directions, a 2GB microSD card preloaded with Paramount Pictures' movie "Star Trek - The Future Begins," Samsung's TouchWiz user interface, a 3.2-megapixel camera with flash and camcorder, and Bluetooth stereo.

The Craft feature phone is available with one of two 4G LTE service plans at $55 and $60. The former features unlimited talk, text and data use. The latter adds MetroStudio service, powered by RealNetworks. The service delivers downloads of full-track songs, ringtones and ring-back tones as well as premium on-demand streaming video from NBC Universal, Black Television (BET) and Univision.


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