We saw the writing on the wall here for a while, but Sprint's now gone ahead and made it official that it'll be phasing out its push-to-talk offerings based on Qualcomm's QChat
technology in favor of -- what else? -- good ol' iDEN
. For Sprint, the move makes sense; when the EV-DO Rev. A-powered QChat system was introduced last year, a Sprint / Nextel schism was a very real possibility
-- but since, the company has ended up pouring money into its Direct Connect network, sprucing it up, and placing a renewed emphasis on its prepaid Boost Mobile
brand which shares Nextel's airwaves. There really isn't much use for two incompatible PTT systems on any network, so one had to go -- and yes, QChat is getting the boot. Existing customers will continue to be supported, but Sprint says that it won't be offering new models; good thing iDEN phones just got pretty
for the first time.