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FCC orders ‘reasonable’ data roaming rates

U.S. regulators on Thursday adopted data roaming rules that would allow smartphones to access the Internet in areas across the country not covered by their wireless carrier. The rules set by the Federal Communications Commission in a 3-2 vote would force wireless carriers like AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless to offer “reasonable” roaming rates. Get the full story »

Sprint hiking data fee on smart phones by $10

Sprint is applying an additional $10 per month data fee on new smart phones, starting Jan. 30. Overland Park, Kan.-based Sprint Nextel Corp. says it needs to apply the fee to maintain its network while offering unlimited data consumption. Get the full story »

Sprint’s Tablet is cheaper, but requires a contract

The Samsung Galaxy Tab. (Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty Images)

Sprint Nextel plans to sell its iPad rival, the Galaxy Tab from Samsung Electronics, for a third less than the tablet computer’s price tag at Verizon Wireless. But the offer still comes with a catch that at least one analyst said would limit sales.

On Nov. 14, Sprint will kick off sales for the $400 Tab, seen as the most credible competitor so far to Apple Inc.’s popular iPad, which has been on sale for $630 since earlier this year.

But while Sprint customers will pay less up front, they may end up forking over more cash over time. The discount comes with a two-year contract requiring monthly service fees starting at $29.99 for two gigabytes of data downloads. Get the full story »

CUB: Ill. cell phone users overpay $359 a year

Mobile phone users in Illinois are paying hundreds of dollars every month for unused minutes and unnecessary services, the Citizens Utility Board said in a report released Monday.

CUB studied 4,400 cell bills entered into its online Cellphone Saver between August 2009 and July 2010 and determined that those consumers are overpaying by an average of $359 a year. Get the full story »

Clearwire offers pay-as-you-go 4G service

Clearwire Corp. launched Monday a new pay-as-you-go 4G mobile Internet service aimed at a young urban consumers in Chicago and 48 other markets.

Clearwire launched 4G service in Chicago late last year, offering broadband speeds that top those of 3G networks and allow for bandwidth-intensive activities such as streaming high-definition video. Sprint and Comcast also offer 4G products and services, which run on Clearwire’s network.

The new pay-as-you-go service is called Rover and will be branded separately from Clearwire’s other 4G offerings. Mike Sievert, Clearwire’s chief commercial officer, said in a conference call that Rover is geared toward city-dwelling youth between the ages of 18 and 24. Get the full story »

Samsung smartphone coming to all major carriers

In the shadow of the latest blockbuster Apple Inc.   iPhone launch, Samsung Electronics Co.  has quietly positioned its own marquee smartphone with all of the national carriers in an attempt to regain its position with high-end cellphones.

Verizon Wireless, Sprint Nextel Corp.  and T-Mobile USA said  Monday that they would be carrying a version of Samsung’s Galaxy S.  AT&T Inc.  previously said it would sell a version of the device  later this year. Of all the carriers, only T-Mobile would commit to a firm launch date of July 21. Get the full story »

T-Mobile boosts network inside Union Station

T-Mobile said it has installed more antennas inside Chicago’s Union Station to provide better service inside and around the building.

The bolstered 3G network launched on Monday. The Bellevue, Wash.-based carrier said commuters at Union Station should notice improved coverage on the mezzanine and concourse levels, including areas such as the terminals, boarding lounges and the food court. Get the full story »