T-Mobile strikes $3.5 billion deal with Nokia to build a 5G network

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Looks like that simultaneous, non-standalone 5G NR and 4G LTE connection isn’t the only big news that T-Mobile and Nokia have to share.

T-Mobile and Nokia have struck a $3.5 billion agreement to build out a nationwide 5G network. Nokia will supply T-Mo with its end-to-end 5G technology, software, and services, including AirScale radio platforms and cloud-native core, AirFrame hardware, CloudBand software, SON, and 5G Acceleration Services. This is Nokia’s largest 5G agreement globally.

Here’s what T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray had to say about this agreement:

“We are all in on 5G. Every dollar we spend is a 5G dollar, and our agreement with Nokia underscores the kind of investment we’re making to bring customers a mobile, nationwide 5G network. And together with Sprint, we’ll be able to do So. Much. More.”

And here’s Ashish Chowdhary, Chief Customer Operations Officer at Nokia:

“Nokia and T-Mobile will advance the large-scale deployment of 5G services throughout the United States. This is a testament to our companies’ strong and productive working relationship, one which has produced several important technological milestones in recent months, and which now allows us to make 5G a commercial reality.”

T-Mobile’s 5G network will utilize 600MHz and 28GHz mmWave spectrum. It’ll also be compliant with 3GPP 5G New Radio (NR) standards. T-Mobile has said that it’ll begin deploying its 5G coverage in 30 U.S. cities in 2018, including New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Las Vegas. T-Mo expects to have nationwide 5G coverage in 2020.

When it comes to devices that you’ll use to actually get on that network, T-Mobile plans to launch its first 5G smartphones in early 2019. There are no details on what devices they might be or which manufacturer will be behind them.

Source: GlobeNewswire

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  • riverhorse

    An opening for other modem and chipmakers to cut into Qualcomm’s present dominance.

    • Captain Insano

      Still thinking most of the exynos Samsung phones are a lot faster than the Qualcomm ones.

    • Albert Orange

      Once CDMA disappears… so does MUCH of Qualcomm’s dominance. Verizon is shutting their’s down in 2019. Sprint will probably do the same once the merger with T-Mobile completes.

  • SirStephenH

    Wait, I thought T-Mobile has said that most of their current hardware was 5G capable and just needed a patch. Now it sounds like they’re adding new hardware to every site.

    • slybacon

      I think they were saying their current 600 Mhz equipment currently operates on Band 71 LTE and with a software update, can run 5G NR on 600 Mhz as well. This new equipment is to run 28 Ghz 5G with 600 Mhz 5G for dense urban areas. When Tmo merges with Sprint, they will need different hardware to use Sprint’s spectrum on 5G.

  • Mike Thaler

    What are the 30 5G cities. Why the rush to build 5 G this year since it can’t be used til sometime next year? And still not clear if it’s aim for home as well as mobile.

    • slybacon

      They have only announced a few of the cities, like NY, LA, Dallas, etc. They haven’t announced all 30. 5G will not be built and done this year. It will start this year and take 2 years minimum to have nationwide 5G on T-Mobile. Verizon and AT&T will continue to have nationwide 4G LTE, but their 5G will be limited to dense urban areas since they only have high frequency radio waves left to use. They would have to move everyone off of their LTE network to build a nationwide 5G network.
      Initially, Tmo 5G will just be mobile. I’m sure it’ll get to fixed home use at some point.

  • BillBurnett

    My bet: T-Mobile also will start featuring Nokia phones for their network, too.

  • Sharti24

    Are these Nokia antennas? Canton, OH

    https://imgur.com/a/jS0RAOc

    https://m.imgur.com/a/VMWLx

  • riopato

    Would be nice to have the option of buying Nokia phones that would take advantage of 5G.