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Sprint to Focus on Mobile Broadband Expansion and Laying 5G Groundwork, Instead of Fixed Wireless

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During a recent Wall Street investor event, John Saw, Ph.D., the chief technical officer of Sprint, revealed that the wireless carrier is not planning any fixed wireless rollouts for now. Instead, the company will be focusing on strengthening its mobile broadband footprint, and at the same time, establish a strong foundation for its future 5G network offering.

Specifically, Sprint will be looking to deploy more 2.5 GHz and 800 MHz antennas in order to bolster its current cellular sites. Part of its plans also involve the launch of additional cell sites to improve overall network coverage.

While Saw did not give any specific timeline or launch schedule for Sprint’s upcoming 5G service, he did say that the national mobile operator is now busy setting up the infrastructure backbone for an eventual commercial 5G rollout. According to the CTO, majority of Sprint’s LTE traffic is carried over its existing 2.5 GHz spectrum, which is utilized on only 70 percent of its cell sites as of the moment. The plan is to achieve 100 percent support for the 2.5 GHz band on all of the carrier’s cell sites, while simultaneously integrating massive MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) capabilities in preparation for 5G.

As pointed out by Saw, massive MIMO will play a vital part in the transition to 5G. Massive MIMO sites can support both LTE Advanced and 5G New Radio (5G NR) at the same time, basically allowing Sprint a two-fold opportunity to not only boost its LTE capabilities, but also lay the groundwork for its 5G offering as well.

Last September, Sprint had announced that it was planning to begin rolling out massive MIMO within the first six months of 2018. About three weeks ago, the carrier also mentioned that it was targeting to start deploying commercial 5G and 5G-ready devices by the second half of next year.


Source: Fierce Wireless

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22 comments:

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  1. what is fixed wireless?

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    1. Fixed wireless refers to using wireless to connect a building to the internet instead of wired broadband like cable or DSL. Fixed Wireless typically uses very radio high frequencies to transmit signals a short distance (often less than a mile) to external antennas on the target buildings.

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  2. Their network probably has too much latency to be competitive with the urban FW providers in this overcrowded segment. They need to focus their FW efforts on the rural "have nothings" instead of the urban "have manies." They probably hope to accomplish this their mobile 5G expansion.

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  3. Better coverage means more subscribers. Long way to go but hope that they make it. We need for them to stay around.

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  4. so basically it's like wired but the last segment from the streets to the building that part is Wireless correct?

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  5. Are any articles here original? Just wondering because I saw this very same article on Fierce Wireless days ago.

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    1. Look under 'source' at the end of the article. It lists Fierce wireless.

      Dale

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    2. Nothing wrong with a news site also being an aggregator from other sites-- and this article is attributed to Fierce Wireless.
      PrepaidPhoneNews has a different user focus than Fierce, or some of the more industry-oriented sites. I read Fierce from time to time, but appreciate it when articles of special end-user relevance are posted here.

      Delete
    3. I just click on source link. I get the whole story with original meaning.

      Delete
    4. "I just click on source link. I get the whole story with original meaning."

      I do as well because you can't trust the re-written news story.

      Delete
  6. Sprint just needs to rename itself as "Blockchain" to get more hits and stuff. I bet their subscribers would go up 30% at least.

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  7. Sprint just has not been allowed to die a natural death, having continued to have investors dump money into a dead horse. SMH. No VoLTE, and they're talking 5G? SMH. SMH.

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    1. There's a lot to be said in today's world for a business that isn't really there to provide a needed service, but is there primarily for a combination of legacy reasons (CDMA? for crying out loud. We're talking Fred Flinstone's shell phone era stuff!), as a tax-writeoff, and for a need to shuffle money around.

      Oh yes, and for Sprint to accumulate vast spectrum resources, but for the sole purpose of letting them ripen on the vine for another company to come along and buy them: without a thought given to deploying them for Sprint customers to use, leaving those few still loyal to Sprint to put up with an ancient unchanging small and slow legacy network that isn't much larger than US Cellular.

      And yes, Sprint will claim how leading-edge it is by providing 5G service to about 1/300th of the US land territory. Showing that it was only in it to look like they were in it (In some sort of annual report or something?), and not provide anything serious to customers.

      Sorry, Sprint, we've moved from the old days of Murphy Brown and "a network so good you could hear a bowling pin drop" to a situation where we can't hear anything other than the sound of 3 shells being slid around on a table.

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    2. Ha. Volte is around because big red needs to support their "awesome" network with additional features they can overcharge on. Volte will die like sprints wimax.

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  8. > Volte will die like sprints wimax

    I don't particularly care what technology is used but I wish voice quality on Sprint would improve. I dread receiving calls on my mobile number because they are so poor quality. When I make a call, I try to use VoIP or something like facetime audio. CDMA voice quality is really bad.

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    1. "CDMA voice quality is really bad."

      The idea of using this badly-outdated technology this far into the 21st century makes me feel like a caveman

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  9. Wimax rhymes with betamax. And not in a good way.

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  10. "About three weeks ago, the carrier also mentioned that it was targeting to start deploying commercial 5G and 5G-ready devices by the second half of next year."

    Three weeks ago was 2017. Is Sprint planning to launch 5G in the second half of 2018 or 2019?

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    1. For Sprint, it's always "next year".

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    2. Qualcomm lists handset and device manufacturers Asus, HMD Global, HTC, LG, Oppo, Sharp, Sierra Wireless, Sony Mobile, vivo, Xiaomi and ZTE as among its confirmed Snapdragon X50 5G NR modem customers. They have an agreement with Samsung that includes 5G.
      Phones and other devices will be out around the end of the year. They will be larger with bigger batteries since they also have to include a separate LTE modem.
      S: FierceWireless

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  11. Sprint? Sorry, 2008 called. Did you get the call? No? Oh...yeah, you're on Sprint after all.

    Anyway, 2008 wants its carrier back. Sprint, go home. You belong in 2010's as much as Zima does.

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  12. Many of us don't have time to follow multiple websites for mobile news. I appreciate Dennis aggregating relevant news.

    The Sprint bashing is getting old. Their problems have been rehashed ad nausem. Sprint plays an important role in the prepaid arena forcing competitors to lower prices.

    An economically vibrant Sprint benefits consumers.

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