May 17, 2010
The Greater Chicago Food Depository goes mobile with 4G in food stamps sign-up drive, touching thousands more families in need

OVERLAND PARK, Kan., May 17, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) --The Greater Chicago Food Depository is proof that the value of 4G spans all business types - from large enterprise companies to non-profits operating on a tight budget.

Today, Sprint (NYSE: S) business customers use 4G applications to improve care in hospitals, keep crime in check through mobile video surveillance, gather television news in ways never seen before, and access real-time data instantaneously.

The Greater Chicago Food Depository uses 4G to bring food to families who need it.

The Greater Chicago Food Depository feeds 142,000 people a week in conjunction with local partners including pantries, soup kitchens and shelters. Last year, it distributed 58 million pounds of food to the community.

Despite the success in food distribution, the depository was challenged on how to broaden the availability of food stamps to eligible recipients. "Either people didn’t know about the food stamps program, didn’t know where to sign up, or didn’t know if they were eligible," said Muhammad Khan, IT director-Greater Chicago Food Depository.

To address the challenge, the food depository equipped food stamp outreach coordinators with Sprint 4G-powered laptops. They criss-crossed Cook County, going from food pantries to city agencies to churches to community centers to sign up eligible recipients. Using laptops, the coordinators widened the reach of the food stamp program dramatically and sped up the sign-up process for hundreds of applicants using 4G speeds and broadband capacity.

"By taking the program on the road - so to speak - with the help of Sprint 4G, the number of people we touched and the awareness we created grew exponentially," Khan said. "With the 4G network, the speed and capacity for sending data is impressive. The faster the connection speed, the more people the coordinators can help in the few hours they spend at each agency."

"The depository’s story is not unusual," said Todd Rowley, Sprint vice president-4G. "We see all the time how 4G changes the trajectory of a business, makes it more efficient, cuts operating costs, enables a better process for doing business and - like the depository - changes the lives of people."

Sprint is the first national carrier to roll out 4G. Sprint 4G is currently available in 32 markets covering about 41 million people. By the end of this year Sprint expects to launch 4G service in such major markets as New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami and Washington, D.C., and cover a population of 120 million.

This summer, Sprint launches the world’s first 3G/4G Android(TM) handset, HTC EVO(TM) 4G, exclusively from Sprint. HTC EVO 4G delivers a multimedia experience at 4G speeds that are second to none, making it possible to download music, pictures, files or videos in seconds - not minutes - and watch streaming video on-the-go with one of the largest pinch-to-zoom displays, at 4.3 inches, in the wireless industry.

Sprint already offers six 4G devices, including the Overdrive(TM) 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot by Sierra Wireless, a hotspot capable of connecting up to five Wi-Fi enabled devices (such as iPhone, iTouch, Palm Pre, laptops, gaming devices) to the Sprint 3G or 4G networks where available. With the Overdrive, any Wi-Fi enabled device, including the recently launched iPad, can become a 4G device.

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SOURCE: Sprint

Mark Bonavia, 913-269-0436
Greater Chicago Food Depository
Bob Dolgan, 773-843-7293