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Sprint Prepares for 4Q Launch of Sprint Direct Connect
Posted: 26-Jul-2011 [Source: Sprint]

[Sprint to launch its next-generation push-to-talk service Sprint Direct Connect in the fourth quarter and will be introducing new handsets including the Kyocera DuraCore and the Kyocera DuraMax and a Motorola handset yet to be annunced.]

Overland Park, Kan. -- Sprint announced the initial phones it plans to deploy in the fourth quarter when the company launches its next-generation, push-to-talk service powered by Sprint’s broadband CDMA network. The new service – Sprint® Direct Connect – will deliver higher bandwidth capacity to keep up with customers’ data demands and is expected to extend the company’s push-to-talk coverage to almost triple the square miles of the company’s current push-to-talk offering.

The Sprint Direct Connect phones to be introduced this fall will be the Kyocera DuraCore and the Kyocera DuraMax. As previously announced, a third handset -- a Motorola smartphone -- will be described closer to the launch of Sprint Direct Connect. The devices will feature most of the capabilities available on current Sprint push-to-talk phones plus next-generation, push-to-talk applications and functionality. Specific availability dates and pricing for each device will be released later.

“Sprint is thrilled to launch Sprint Direct Connect with a strong starting lineup of phones,” said Fared Adib, Sprint vice president of product development. “These devices represent the new gold standard in push-to-talk technology.”

Devices in 2011

Kyocera DuraMax brings customers advanced technology wrapped in a rugged exterior with a clamshell form factor. It offers military-grade durability, including water resistance when submerged up to one meter for up to 30 minutes. DuraMax comes with an integrated 3.2-megapixel camera and camcorder. The 32GB expandable microSD memory card slot provides the storage capacity required to manage large files on-the-go. Additional key features include:

* 2.0-inch QVGA TFT main display

* Military standard 810G specifications for dust, shock, vibration, temperature extremes, blowing rain and immersion

* Encased in rubber, non-slip Dura-Grip® material for sure hold and extra durability

* Stereo Bluetooth® wireless technology

* 2.5mm stereo headphone jack (supports PTT headsets)

* 1GB microSD memory card

* Large-font menu option

* GPS navigation enabled

* Supports SMS and MMS messaging and third-party data applications

Kyocera DuraCore is an affordable, high-impact solution for a mobile workforce that relies on push-to-talk. Additional features of this rugged, clamshell-style phone:

* Military standard 810G specifications for dust, shock and vibration

* Encased in rubber, non-slip Dura-Grip material for sure hold and extra durability

* Bi-directional speakerphone

* Bluetooth wireless technology

* 2.5mm mono headphone jack (supports PTT headsets)

* Large-font menu option

* GPS navigation enabled

* Supports SMS and MMS messaging and third-party data applications

In addition to Direct Connect® and group calling options, the devices are expected to enable Land Mobile Radio (LMR) interoperability, simultaneous data and push to talk, and availability notification. In early 2012, Sprint Direct Connect will offer additional capabilities, including international push-to-talk.

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