Regional wireless carrier C Spire is the latest wireless service provider to launch 4G LTE service. The Mississippi based carrier announced 4G LTE availability in McComb and Greenville, Miss., with an additional 31 markets to be lit with 4G LTE by the end of October.
This first round of LTE build-out by C Spire will cover 2,700 square miles, a population of 1.2 million and 364 cell sites. C Spire announced the $60 million LTE project back in March. After initially selecting Samsung for their LTE vendor partner, C Spire changed course and went with Alcatel-Lucent for this initial LTE build.
Unlike other smaller carriers who launch LTE, C Spire is moving directly into mobile broadband, by offering “… several 4G LTE smartphone and connected devices…,” with the Motorola PHOTON Q available immediately. C Spire also said a LTE equipped Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone will be available soon, although no launch date has been provided.
Many smaller carriers usually start with a portable 4G offer for laptops and netbooks, before eventually moving to mobile 4G with smartphones. This has much to do with handset availability for smaller carriers, particularly in the A- and B-blocks of the 700 MHz spectrum band where smaller carriers operate, and which are not shared with larger carriers like Verizon and AT&T. C Spire has not confirmed which band their LTE service operates in.
C Spire has approximately 900K subscribers and serves a southeast regional footprint including markets in Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, and Florida.