Sprint, Dish to test rollout of new wireless broadband service

The wireless broadband access will be trialed in sections of Corpus Christi, Texas, but is expected to reach other markets down the road.

Lynn La/CNET

Sprint and Dish are teaming up on a project to deliver wireless broadband to areas that may otherwise be out of the loop.

Announced on Tuesday, the joint venture would lead to a rollout of fixed wireless broadband to Corpus Christi, Texas, around the middle of 2014. The service would at first be available only in a limited number of sections around the city. But the plan is to expand to other markets in the future, Sprint said.

To enable the high-speed access in a customer's home, Dish will install an outdoor router or indoor equipment to send the strongest possible signal. Both the outdoor and indoor gear would tap into the 4G TDD-LTE signal that will be available on Sprint's 2.5 GHz spectrum.

"With millions underserved by inadequate broadband, the potential to bring a high-speed fixed wireless solution is very compelling to both Dish and Sprint," Tom Cullen, Dish executive vice president of corporate development, said in a statement. "We both bring distinct skills, not the least of which for Dish is a workforce of professional technicians who visit thousands of homes every day performing professional installations for both video and broadband."