Sprint intros HTC Detail for wholesale partners

Sprint, America’s biggest 4G operator, has launched HTC Detail, a tweaked version of the HTC Evo Shift that it launched for consumers earlier this year.

HTC Detail will be part of its offering for ‘wholesale’ customers such as Mitel, which repackage Sprint’s services along with their own to sell to other customers, typically companies.

The Shift (Detail) is a ‘lower high’ end phone, with a 3.6 inch display and an 800 MHz processor. Unlike most other phones, the Detail does have a physical keyboard — something very important to many corporate customers.

Sprint said the user interface has been updated. The phone also acts as a mobile WiFi hotspot, extending Internet to up to five other devices using its built in WiFi connection.

The Android operating system, however, has not been upgraded and continues to be on 2.2.

Sprint is one of the pioneers of fourth-generation wireless technology, rolling out its 4G Wimax network in 2008. Verizon, in comparison, started the process only in December last year.

Sprint was also the first major operator in the World to offer a 4G phone — the HTC EVO 4G launched in June 2010. It later added more handsets from HTC, Motorola and Samsung.

Unlike 3G, which usually manages a speed of around 1 Mbps, 4G networks offer around 3 to 6 Mbps of speed on the ground in most cases.

Sprint said it would introduce additional handsets, data cards, hotspot devices and a “fixed access alternative” to its offerings for wholesalers.