Sprint Nextel Corporation is a telecommunications company based in Overland Park, Kansas. The company owns and operates Sprint, the third largest wireless telecommunications network in the United States, with 51 million customers, behind Verizon Wireless and AT&T Mobility.
Sprint is a global Internet carrier and makes up a portion of the Internet backbone. In the United States, the company is the third largest long distance provider and also owns a majority of Clearwire, which operates the largest wireless broadband network.
The company was renamed in 2005 with the purchase of Nextel Communications by Sprint Corporation. The company continues to operate using two separate wireless network technologies, CDMA and iDEN (for Nextel and some Boost Mobile subscribers). In 2006, the company spun off its local landline telephone business, naming it Embarq (which was subsequently acquired by CenturyTel). In 2009, Sprint reached an agreement to outsource management of its wireless networks to Ericsson.
Sprint Nextel launched its first WiMAX wireless card on December 21, 2008 (the Franklin Wireless u300 broadband card), and the first WiMAX phone available in the United States (the HTC Evo 4G) on June 4, 2010, utilizing its WiMAX technology from Clearwire Corp. A recent Consumer Reports survey tied Sprint with perennial front-runner Verizon Wireless in terms of customer satisfaction, a big improvement over previous years.