Seriously, how long does it take Sprint to catch up to other carriers for the same devices OS. Google released the update for the Galaxy Nexus to receive Jelly Bean a couple days ago, and of course Sprint has yet to release the OS to it's customers. As this update will improve the performance of the device as well as improve the look of the phones operating system. I am not impressed with Sprint at the moment. When Gingerbread came out, it took months for it to be released to the phones. A sprint rep. said that they will have to check the OS to be sure that it wont damage the phone, when the stock android was released specially for Galaxy Nexus. Sprint, you need to up your game. As a customer, I am unsatisfied. I would really appreiciate if you would release the updates to us Galaxy Nexus customers.
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I think Sprint at least owes its customers a clear policy explanation of the Sprint AOSP qualification policy on it's Nexus line of phones. If the percentage of Sprint Nexus owners that care about having an AOSP qualified phone is small, what harm could having buggy binaries be? Can this small percentage of phones be a performance risk to the Sprint network? Could it be these binaries could expose Sprints network build strategy plans? Is it cost prohibitive to release the binaries on a regular basis? Is Sprint anti-android development?
What I do know is Sprint 3g is slow and network roaming range has degraded. Apparently, the degraded roaming range is due to other networks upgrading their infrastructure to support LTE. Early consumer use of android apps built for the latest android version is harmed by not including the test user base of the small percentage of geeky Sprint customers. My galaxy nexus is more likely to not have available the best performing open development roms and kernels because of the lack of open access to the proprietary binaries. Family data sharing plans are coming to all the networks in the US, so cost savings will not be as much an incentive for family plans as they have been in the past.
My reasons to qualify my service provider choice with the Sprint network: data sharing costs, diverse customer type phone product line, good roaming range for data and voice, relative to other networks--quick phone software update frequency; are all no longer what they used to be. Each one of those qualities has degraded to the point where I'm losing any customer loyalty, and am forced to reconsider which network provider is best for me and my family members. A little policy explanation from Sprint could go a long way to appeasing this particular customer, who currently pays Sprint $171 per month for a family plan.
What I do know is Sprint 3g is slow and network roaming range has degraded. Apparently, the degraded roaming range is due to other networks upgrading their infrastructure to support LTE.
Roaming doesn't have anything to do with LTE. All roaming is done on 1x....which remains available for voice and data even if a tower has been upgraded to support LTE. All Sprint roaming is done on Verizon...the only other CDMA carrier remaining.
Yes we roam on the 1900MHz Verizon spectrum, I think. Verizon is going to voice over LTE. They plan to sell LTE only phones in the future. I don't remember the details of what Verizon is selling off, or reconfiguring, but their spectrum useable for Sprint is decreasing. I think you are incorrect is stating the spectrum available for 1x roaming is remaining constant as Verizon continues to upgrade.
There has been no direct binary released directly from Google for the Sprint Galaxy Nexus yet. The Nexus S 4G [crespo4g] and the wifi Xoom [wingray] are the only two devices on Sprint's lineup to recieve this direct driver support. In all honesty, CDMA carriers work in conjunction with Google to complete this process, and it appears that this collaboration is not yet complete.
Looking in a little further, the Sprint Nexus [toroplus] recieved support for Sprint TV through the last OTA, which indicates that Sprint may be going in their own direction with giving users Jellybean. It was a surprise that the toro binary was released for the device on Verizon's network, so ours should technically follow shortly; but I have no indication or direction on a date for that happening.
Just know that most of the 4.1 functionality depends on the drivers in this binary, and without such, you're going to have issues. All the ROMs out there are kanged from other source, and have been compiled to run on this hardware, but are by no means made specifically for the toroplus.
Keep in mind that the toroplus, as well as all Sprint LTE devices, only supports the 800MHz, 1900MHz and 2500MHz spectrums on the Sprint LTE network, making roaming on Verizon's infrastruture impossible when not using native 1xRTT or EVDO for 3G or voice. It is for this reason that we, as a company, have no LTE roaming agreement with Verizon, and do not plan to as we each support a different type of LTE. Sprint has planned their LTE build out, in conjnction with Clear, based on TDD LTE model, whereas Verizon utilizes something called FDD LTE. The main difference in the two being that FDD LTE supports different upstream and downstream spectrums, and TDD LTE operates on a single frequency; in this case being the 1900MHz spectrum.
Thank you for replying Watts_. My gripe right now is that Sprint hasn't released the binaries to Google. Usually, it is Verizon that is blasted by techies for being obstinate in dealing with their customers. Customarily, Sprint has seemed much quicker to update their phones, and to be more customer friendly in the OS installed, such as first to allow removal of built-in apps. Not in the case of the GNex though. More than a month has passed and yet Google hasn't received what they need from Sprint to update our devices? Verizon has complied? That just isn't right. Something is wrong here in our cellular world.
Thank you Watts for a clear answer from a Sprint agent, you seem to actually know what you are talking about. So I do have a question maybe you can answer, you said that ROMs are kanged from other sources but I don’t understand that if they can rip the binaries from ICS and use them to make JB function on the network then what is the problem with a company I pay to do this can’t get it done in a timely manner? This seems like a bad business move.
On another note you said that there is not a direct binary release from Google meaning you are saying Google is holding it up? Then how did the GSM phones already get the update? If not Google then Samsung must be the one because Sprint has always said that they don’t make the updates, the manufacturers are the ones that push the update. If that’s true then shouldn’t Samsung be the one releasing the update? If not then it comes down to Sprint holding it up because it doesn’t have the bloatware like all the other devices. Sprint TV? WHO CARES! Without LTE here in Phx and the crappy 3G speeds I can only use something like that on Wifi at home. Pointless… And I know the next direction most people go, “well LTE is being rolled out.” NOT TO PHOENIX!!! 6th Largest city in the US and out of the 14 top biggest we are the only one not getting it in the 1st or 2nd rollout.
“Looking in a little further, the Sprint Nexus [toroplus] recieved support for Sprint TV through the last OTA, which indicates that Sprint may be going in their own direction with giving users Jellybean.” Honestly I can’t believe you posted this… “Sprint TV” and “going in their own direction”, are you kidding me?!?! I bought the Nexus to get the Sprint bloatware off my phone without having to mod it!! You make it sound like a benefit but it’s just Sprint’s way of worming their way into the Nexus line. I just want the update without Sprint crap on my phone...
It isn't that Sprint is witholding information, or Samsung is being a jerk, or that Google is being slow; it is a combination of coomunication flaws on the parts of three companies. Samsung has to release the drivers to Google to process, and compile, a new source and boot image for 4.1.1 on the toroplus. Sprint has to verify this software before pushing it to phones. As far as I'm aware, nothing is caught in the pipes on Sprint's end. The reason that these GSM versions of the Nexus [takguro and macguro] builds recieve updates so quickly is because Google has worked with Samsung to make these devices from the ground up. The phones themselves are the developer kits which Android is created on, tested, and rolled out to work with. CDMA devices straddle a hard line here in the states, simply because they are not international, they have much smaller support teams put into place to manage the devices and their updates, as the international community, being GSM based, is much larger which obviously warrants more support. Also, you have the carriers who sometimes stand in the way. Phones are subsidized here in the states, meaning that carriers HAVE to support them for at least two years or lose favor of their customers; simply for being locked into a contract with an unsupported device.
To be clear, you can rip binaries, drivers, and take bits of source from ICS to use in JB, but it will not always work. It isn't simply the device talking to the network, but literally everything about the device functioning. For example, Google has implemented what they call Project Butter in the most recent build of Android, Jellybean. This technology takes advantage of a ramped up vsync on the device, which optimizes the graphics with the processor, battery, radio, and every other feature on the device. You can't just take code from ICS and have it integrate with a feature like this, because the new feature is integrated at the core will all of Android's functions. New code has to be written, compiled, debugged and tested. Google's official GSM device's get this almost as soon as it's announced because it is the device that Google specifically created it for. But for us who own CDMA versions of the Nexus, Sprint found out about Jellybean the exact day you did, and began talks with Google and Samsung to get this to their devices. Thing is, that whole coding, and integration process for them begins now; where Google has already rolled it out to a very simmilar phone, being their GSM Nexus. This is the hiccup.
As for Sprint TV being supported on the Nexus now, you'd be surprised how many people use this, and wanted it on their Nexus; so Sprint released an update for it. Which, in turn, takes time away from readying a Jellybean update having to be integrated into a brand new operating system which has just been released by that exact team. See the logistics, and complications?
And here is where I get flustered. As customers, it isn't your job to know this, or deal with it, or worry about it. You want a supported product; you paid for what you were told was a supported product. Thing is, it is, but it takes time. Your phone will get Jellybean easily before any other device on the network, and you can quote me on that. You're still recieving the software upgrade before anyone else, just after the GSM devices and I've clarified why. I'm sorry that it's been a month since IO and you don't have the latest and greatest, but feel fortunate, because you'll have it before any other device on the network or in the world for that matter. Only something like 16% of devices even have ICS, and you're in that number. Less than 1% of devices are running JB, and that includes devices which have been rooted and installed it manually.
It'll get there. Just give it time. If you have any questions or need to talk to me directly, I'd be glad to give you a time frame on the release according to what I hear. Just shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Your reply is probably the best and most informative reply I've read from a Sprint rep. When it all shakes out in the end, keeping the customers informed, even if it isnt exactly what we want to hear, is a good thing. I'll wait with more patience for my helping of Jelly Bean. Thanks!
Thank you again for the info, you really do seem to have a good understanding of what’s going on, but this leads me to more questions… I do understand that this has to be done from the ground up but part of my point is that, yes at Google I/O Google handed out devices that were running Jellybean, I know they pushed it out to the GSM phones, what I don’t get then is why Sprint would wait till after it was released to the public that it would start work on it. I mean you are telling me that Google does release the source to it partner companies so it would be ready on release date?
As for the supporting a phone for two years, don’t get me started on the debacle that was the Moment I had… EOL after less than a year and I had to Mod it just for it to function the way it should. None of the stock updates from Sprint fixed anything after the 2.1 update tanked the phone.
“Sprint found out about Jellybean the exact day you did” how is possible? I heard about Jellybean back in May and that was way before it was released at Google I/O and then launched on July 10th. Are you trying to say Sprint, running as many Android phones as it does, wouldn’t know about something like this way before its customers? Isn’t this the NOW network? I think whoever is doing the planning needs to get fired and replaced by someone with some forethought to do some better planning.
As for the coding and what not, there are guys that are rebuilding these things from the ground up faster than a company I pay to get these kind of things done is not only sad but makes me lose confidence in their services. I mean honestly, what am I paying for? 3G speeds for two more years and no updates. I’m not getting the latest update and I’m not getting LTE anytime soon if at all…
As for the first device and “because you'll have it before any other device on the network or in the world for that matter” The Galaxy SIII is getting it soon (GSM) and I was in a Sprint store today holding a Motorola Xoom running 4.1. I know it’s not on the CDMA network but the point of the Nexus line was to have the latest updates before ANYONE, not just anyone on the network. So Sprint is selling a device running Jellybean but the Nexus should have it be any other device in the world?