Sprint HTC Evo 4G LTE goes on sale May 18

One of Sprint’s big announcements this week at CTIA was the release details of the HTC Evo 4G LTE.

It’s significant because it marks what is likely to be Sprint’s first big foray in the LTE market. The carrier launched its first “4G” network back in 2009, but back then it was powered by a standard known as Wimax.

It was great at the time, since Sprint was several months ahead of all other carriers and managed to be the exclusive provider of high-speed 4G data connections while everyone else was playing catch-up.

But while the others were working on their own 4G plans, they started experimenting with other standards that could potentially be even faster and even more powerful. As a result, Verizon ended up being the last major carrier to offer 4G, but it ended up being the standard that everyone now wants.

That standard, LTE, requires a lot of infrastructure and network building, so now Sprint is essentially dismantling its Wimax service and building a brand new LTE network from the ground up.

So, enter the Evo 4G LTE. Built by HTC, it has a 4.7-inch super LCD display, a Snapdraggon S4 dual-core processor, an 8-megapixel camera along with a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, and “HD Voice” for better call audio quality.

Interestingly enough, HTC was also the manufacturer that built the first Wimax 4G phone for Sprint – the HTC Evo 4G.

The HTC Evo 4G LTE will launch on May 18 for $200 for customers who sign up for a new two-year service agreement.