T-Mo CEO calls “bullshit” on 5Ge

T-Mobile US executives, speaking today on an earnings call, reiterated the importance of the operator’s 600 MHz spectrum portfolio to its plan to offer nationwide 5G service in 2020.

According to the company, its 600 MHz spectrum is deployed in more than 2,700 cities and is supported by 29 devices. Chief Technology Officer Neville Ray said the low-band activation is “going to be the biggest and largest and most transformative piece as we move through ’19 and into ’20. We do not take our eye off the ball at all on capacity and performance.”

He continued: “The 600 LTE rollout has been going incredibly strong. As we get our software matured and ready for primetime, we will light up 5G services on those same radios. The 5G story is coming on super strong.”

Ray also said T-Mo is deploying License Assisted Access to bolster overall capacity by aggregating its licensed spectrum holdings with the unlicensed 5 GHz band.

While T-Mobile US is working to gain regulatory approval to merge with Sprint, the two carriers have repeatedly made the point that a combination will give the go-ahead for $40 billion network investment that will drive U.S. leadership in 5G.

Relative to rivals AT&T and Verizon, who respectively are offering standards-based mobile 5G in parts of 12 markets and a 5G fixed wireless home broadband service based on a proprietary standard in parts of four markets, T-Mobile US CEO John Legere made clear his distaste. Specific to AT&T’s move to display Android and now Apple devices with a “5Ge” indicator, he said, “Please tell me not many people are fooled by this total bullshit. It’s 4G LTE Advanced,” based on 4×4 MIMO, 256 QAM and multi-channel carrier aggregation. “It’s things Neville did so long ago he has to go back and remember what they are.”

“The 5G network that’s going to be built with the $40 billion worth of investment,” Legere said of the New T-Mobile, “is something the country needs. Capacity will go up precipitously…prices will go down and jobs will increase.”

The company reported full-year 2018 service revenues of $32 billion, up 6% year-over-year; total 2018 revenues of $43.3 billion, up 7% year-over-year. Net income was $2.9 billion, down 36% compared to fiscal year 2017. Here’s a detailed look at Q4 and full-year 2018 financials. 

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