With regards to frequency, 800 MHz can handle fewer users on a slice of spectrum than can 1900. However, during the first phase of Network Vision, Sprint is rolling out what is called 1x Advanced in their ESMR band (850 MHz). 1x Advanced can handle 4x the amount of users that 1x does. So we will actually see an increase in the capacity per channel with this 1xA technology. That being said, your phone must be capable of utilizing this spectrum by having a multimodal radio. The newer phones such as the EVO 3D have this chip.
Also, Verizon actually uses a combination of 850 and 1900 in most places. The 1900 is used for EvDO rev. A (same as Sprint) in their urban markets. This is roughly the same setup that sprint uses. However, most phones only report the 1x (voice and text) strength on VZ's 850, so coverage appears far better. When NV is finished, we will be able to use 850 for voice and text giving us better in-building and flora penetration as well as increased distance from tower. EvDO is set up so that even if you are using a 2 bar signal, it is about the same speed as a 5 bar signal (theoretically). This is because EvDO bandwidth does not decrease over signal degradation. Finally, in the second stage of NV (after decomissioning of iDEN network), Sprint will roll out an LTE carrier on the now vacant 850 MHz from Nextel. This will give you wonderful data speeds in buidling that VZ customers enjoy with 700MHz. Hopefully this has helped!
Although it may not be important, nevertheless one should note that Sprint's new devices (as announced so far) will not support LTE other than on the 1900 Mhz band (no 800 or 2400 Mhz). Although the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chipset will support other LTE channels, I don't know if it is software configurable (assume it is) later or factory burned in.
The so-called multimode radio referred in a previous comment above, concerns improvements in voice and 3G data (addressing bandwidth, speed and reception issues) AFAIK.
Any phone with a Qualcomm S3 (usually an MSM 8660 chipset) or S4 chipset (Evo LTE, Nexus LTE) has multimode CDMA capability. Capability vs. implementation, that's often an issue!
Gleaned off the web....
Well, I don't even have 3g service within 30 miles but luckily I still can pay $10/month for this privilege.Sprint just refuses to care.Just the same old lies about going to upgrade.Sure
For what it's worth - I live in Reston, VA, and I used to get awful speeds between 0.2 - 0.4 megabits/sec. But since Sprint performed some capacity upgrades around the area I have seen my speeds vastly improve.
This is stupid I am extremely disappointed with 3g speeds that sprint is delivering. The speeds are decent in a way, bit when comparing to ATT or any other network, even tmobile, the 3g is just lacking competition. My coworker has iPhone with ATT, and the speed of it is fantastic. No I will not go to ATT, because they have a terrible customer service, but if sprint continues to suck, I might as well go to Verizon, they have the Droid maxx, which has super battery life, and the price of what I will use is not all that much different. Sure they don't have unlimited data, but with speeds so slow with sprint, unlimited data is not all that great. Keep up the good work sprint and you shall lose your share in the wireless market. Instead of promising things, get to work and lay the damn plan out.