Sprint’s mobile 5G
Sprint (S) recently announced at the Mobile World Congress that it’s launching its commercial 5G mobile service in nine cities in the United States in the first half of 2019. Sprint, the fourth largest mobile network in the US, plans to begin its standard-based 5G service offering in May in Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Kansas City. Other US cities that will get 5G service include Houston, New York City, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Washington D.C. Sprint’s 5G will initially have total coverage of more than 1,000 square miles across all nine cities.
Sprint’s 5G coverage
Sprint is deploying its 5G services in downtown Chicago where the company is testing the standards-based 5G software and hardware. Sprint is using 2.5 GHz and Massive MIMO radio technology from Samsung Electronics America for its 5G.
Sprint, through its 5G network, is expected to provide fast speeds and mobility to its wireless customers. Sprint had a total subscriber base of 54.5 million at the end of the third quarter of fiscal 2018, which ended in December.
Peers in 5G race
Sprint’s 5G launch follows the launches of mobile carrier peers Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T), which are aggressively expanding in offering 5G services. Verizon already launched its fixed 5G Home Internet service in October 2018 in some US markets such as Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, and Sacramento, while AT&T released its mobile 5G service in a dozen cities in December 2018. AT&T, which is planning to deploy 5G services to a total of 19 cities by early 2019, is working with equipment manufacturers such as Ericsson (ERIC), Nokia (NOK), and Samsung (SSNLF) to build its mobile nationwide 5G network. T-Mobile is also working on a 5G rollout, but it doesn’t have plans of a 5G launch before the second half of 2019.