Mobile inks $3.5 billion deal with Ericsson for 5G equipment

T-Mobile bolster 5G ambitions with $3.5 billion supplier deal with Ericsson

T-Mobile bolster 5G ambitions with $3.5 billion supplier deal with Ericsson

After signing a $3.5 billion deal with Nokia to help deploy the technology in the United States, the carrier is signing a similar deal with Ericsson.

Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer with T-Mobile, says: "We've been working at a fever pace to get commercial 5G ready, reaching one milestone after another".

From T-Mobile's announcements, it seems the operator will be dividing the labor and dual sourcing from the two companies equally, buying both hardware and software compliant with global standards from Ericsson and Nokia.

Alongside hardware, Ericsson will also provide digital services, including dynamic orchestration and business support systems (BSS), along with its Ericsson Cloud Core product, enabling T-Mobile to more easily launch 5G experiences to its customers. These are all meant to help T-Mobile bridge the gap between its current nationwide LTE Advanced network to a functioning 5G network faster than any of its competitors.

The era of 5G networks is rapidly approaching, but despite all the talks surrounding the technology in recent months, it could take a while for it to become mainstream. Additionally, T-Mobile's already installed base of Ericsson Radio System radios will be able to run 5G NR technology with remote software installation.

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T-Mobile has said it plans to roll out 5G service nationwide by 2020, after initial deployments in select cities this year.

During the same event, AT&T also announced the rollout of mobile 5G in five U.S. cities: Houston, Jacksonville, Louisville, New Orleans, and San Antonio - in addition to previously announced markets: Atlanta, Charlotte, Dallas, Indianapolis, Oklahoma City, Raleigh, and Waco.

For all the latest news from the wireless networking and services sector, check out our dedicated mobile content channel here on Light Reading. Ltd. and ZTE Corp. Ericsson had racked up a series of operating losses until the second quarter of 2018, when it turned a small profit and hailed improvements at its main networks business. Commercially available products: Ericsson Radio System AIR 5331 and the Intel® 5G Mobile Trial Platform, offer further validation of the supporting 5G ecosystem.

And there are still hurdles to overcome, not least 5G's limited range and penetration.

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