Sprint is adding two devices to its suite of indoor small cell solutions to improve data coverage and speeds in businesses and residences, the carrier said in a release.
Sprint said that the new offerings are a small femtocell and a new version of the Sprint Magic Box, both of which will be on display at the company’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) Los Angeles 2019 exhibit this week.
“We’re continuing to expand our portfolio of all-wireless small cells with a new femtocell and another variant of our popular Magic Box line,” said John Saw, Sprint CTO. “These newest devices give us the ability to help improve our customers’ data experience in their homes and businesses.”
One of the new devices is dubbed the Pebble, which is designed and built by Casa Systems. The device is the first femtocell from Sprint that offers an untethered Wi-Fi backhaul option in addition to the standard Ethernet connection used in traditional femtocells, the company said.
The Pebble device uses the customer’s broadband connection, rather than a cell tower connection, so it can be used to provide service in areas outside of Sprint coverage. The Wi-Fi backhaul option allows a customer to place the device anywhere in their home where Wi-Fi is available without having to worry about running or connecting additional cables to their home router, Sprint said.
The Pebble stands 6.5 inches square by 2.3 inches high, and it weighs just one pound. Sprint said that an installation application is available for Android and iOS handsets to assist in set-up of the Pebble. The carrier confirmed that the new device is expected to be available by the end of the year.
The second device is the Sprint Magic Box Silver, which offers a plug-and-play, installation-free feature that automatically connects to the Sprint network to improve data coverage and indoor download and upload speeds. Sprint said that customers can also download an application for their handset to assist in configuration of the device.
“With the integrated LTE relay backhaul, Magic Box Silver enhances in-house LTE data coverage without relying on the fixed broadband connectivity,” Sprit said.
Magic Box Silver, which is designed and manufactured by Sercomm, provides location flexibility and LTE data coverage without location constraints for the device inside the house, the carrier said.
Magic Box Silver is designed for Sprint small and medium businesses and residential customers and can serve up to 16 user accesses simultaneously. The carrier said that it should be available by the end of the year and joins the more recent Sprint Magic Box Generation 3 and Sprint Magic Box – Hospitality Edition as part of its larger Magic Box portfolio. Sprint has distributed more than 370,000 Magic Box devices since the device’s 2017 launch.