T-Mobile Expands 5G Service to Cover 81 Million More Americans
T-Mobile has scored a win by securing 7,156 licenses for the 2.5GHz mid-band spectrum during FCC Auction 108. This move allows the second-largest wireless provider in the US to expand its 5G coverage to an additional 81 million Americans. The FCC had to wait for new legislation to regain its congressional auction authority before it turned over the licenses covering the spectrum to T-Mobile.
CEO Mike Sievert expressed excitement about the new spectrum, revealing that the company had already installed some radios and could light up the new spectrum within two days after acquiring the licenses. The expansion of 5G coverage will allow T-Mobile to reach a total of 81 million more people, with the only exception being some channels in key markets and the state of Maine.
Additionally, T-Mobile also celebrated the transfer of 49 million T-Mobile shares to SoftBank, with the shares valued at $7.6 billion. This transfer was part of the 2020 deal between T-Mobile and SoftBank related to T-Mobile’s acquisition of Sprint. The company’s shares have risen by 5.96% in the last month, closing at $161.91.
Investment bank Raymond James noted that the potential share issuance had been an overhang on the stock, creating an artificial ceiling. However, the clearing of the $150 trading level has allowed T-Mobile’s shares to rise, providing a positive outlook for the company’s investors.
Industry analysts see this latest development as a modest win for T-Mobile, with the company now having the contiguous nationwide spectrum inventory it needs to fully deploy nationwide 5G. It’s expected that T-Mobile will need to cut checks to Nokia and Ericsson, its largest 5G radio suppliers, to support the expansion of the 5G network.
Overall, this move by T-Mobile demonstrates the company’s commitment to expanding and improving its 5G network, potentially reaching millions of more Americans with enhanced connectivity and faster internet speeds.