Sprint EVO 4G launches, but not without a few snags

The Sprint EVO 4G, a next-gen smartphone built by HTC, hit store shelves today. But is the Sprint EVO 4G just a great phone looking for a great network?

The Sprint EVO 4G, a smartphone built by HTC, is seen here in its original packaging. Sprint is marketing the EVO 4G as a next-generation handset, but some testers have had troubles getting the EVO to connect to the Sprint 4G network.

It's launch day for the Sprint EVO 4G, the HTC-designed machine recently dubbed by one reviewer as "truly one of the best smartphones ever made." But is the Sprint 4G network ready for the EVO? Depends on whom you ask. Although some testers have lauded the EVO's snappy voice and data connections, at least one writer is complaining that the Sprint EVO is a "great phone is still looking for a great network."

As we noted in our review roundup, the Sprint EVO has been dogged by performance-related questions since it was unveiled earlier this year. Chief among them: The quality – and reach – of Sprint's 4G network, which Sprint has been hustling to get into shape for the launch of the HTC EVO. Of course, the EVO will work just fine on Sprint's 3G network, but the 4G is the big sell here, and if it falls flat, then the EVO could be in trouble.

Over at PC World, Mark Sullivan has put the Sprint EVO 4G through its paces in two markets in Oregon, where the Clearwire network is up and running. Sullivan got a decent connection on his EVO, "but the service simply isn't fast enough to turn the EVO 4G into the 'revolutionary' communications device it's being hyped as," Sullivan wrote.

In the conclusion to the PC World test, Sullivan said he had the sense that this "great phone is still looking for a great network. The Clearwire 4G network is definitely faster than the Sprint 3G network, but my tests suggest that it’s not 10 times as fast, nor as fast as advertised, nor fast enough to usher in a new wave of high-bandwidth mobile apps (such as videoconferencing)," he added.

Meanwhile, several sites posted information earlier this week about a potential security vulnerability with the MicroSD memory cards on the Sprint EVO 4G. By all accounts, Sprint acted quickly, releasing a software upgrade to correct the problem. According to Sprint, users can install the update through the settings bar on their EVO 4G.

Want to read more about the Sprint EVO 4G? Check out our review roundup. Got your hands on a Sprint EVO 4G? We want to hear from you. Drop us a line in the comments section, and as always, use your best language.

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