No. 4 wireless carrier Sprint is looking to bring its expanded LTE service to a wider customer base in South Florida by opening temporary pop-up shops in Miami, Orlando and Tampa.
The mini stores, dubbed Sprint Express, are supported by dedicated retail teams and will begin appearing at grocery stores, concerts and special events in the targeted markets.
The shops are designed to “expand the company’s retail distribution presence, as well as better reach and serve consumers in local communities,” the mobile carrier said.
The Express stores will join more than 15 new full-size Sprint showrooms by the end of 2018, which will add over 250 jobs and help leverage what the company described as “substantial network investments” in the area.
Those include upgrades to more than 500 cell sites with the addition of 800MHz and 2.5GHz LTE service, HD voice, and carrier aggregation technology. Sprint is also making its first tentative small-cell deployments in the region, and will flip the switch locally on a new technique called high performance user equipment (HPUE), which can extend its 2.5GHz coverage by up to 30 percent, indoors and out, on HPUE-capable devices.
The initiatives are part of an effort by regional president Claudio Hidalgo, who was brought in last year to oversee the Florida, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands regions.
“We started this journey a year ago with the announcement of a new localized approach to bring us closer to consumers, businesses, and an experienced workforce here in Miami,” Hidalgo said. “Sprint’s new stores, jobs and infrastructure investment not only underscore our desire to provide the best overall experience for our customers, but also our growing commitment to this region. As we look ahead, we’re excited about the impact we’ll make in South Florida.”
It is unclear if any of the 15 new permanent stores will include RadioShack locations. The carrier is in the process of converting hundreds of joint RadioShack/Sprint stores into standalone Sprint showrooms as part of RadioShack’s Chapter 11 reorganization plan and Sprint’s push to expand its retail base.