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Inside Sprint’s Plan to Offer 5G Mobile Services

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Nov. 20 2020, Updated 4:50 p.m. ET

Top carriers race to be first with 5G service

The race for 5G (fifth-generation) network implementation is heating up. AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) have been talking about launching some form of 5G service in select markets before the end of 2018.

T-Mobile (TMUS) and Sprint (S), the third-largest and fourth-largest mobile operators, respectively, announced a merger deal last month. They believe a combination of the two companies would put them in a position to rapidly launch a nationwide mobile 5G network.

On a stand-alone basis, Sprint is deploying advanced network technology called Massive MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) radios as part of making its network 5G-ready. It plans to launch its 5G service in early 2019.

According to research by Statista, 5G wireless subscriptions are projected to reach 545 million by 2022.

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Verizon’s 5G strategy

Verizon is looking forward to launching its 5G fixed wireless broadband service in up to five US residential markets in the second half of this year. It made the 5G launch pledge after it successfully completed 5G pre-commercial trials in 11 US markets last year. AT&T is expecting to launch its mobile 5G service in a dozen cities across the United States late this year.

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