Dish Network executives said in an incoming call today that its Las Vegas 5G wireless service is in the final stages of construction and will launch in beta by the end of September. This will only keep it in line with its third-quarter deployment target earlier this year.
Beta is an important first step towards engagement will cover 70 percent of the U.S. population by June 2023, a goal that seems more and more ambitious day by day as the company continues to lose wireless customers. It lost 161,000 subscribers in the first quarter of this year, and that’s just it reports a net loss of 201,000 wireless subscribers In Q2. The company will lose even more of its remaining 8.9 million wireless subscribers T-Mobile has unveiled a generous offer aimed specifically at those customers it had to sell to Dish as part of Sprint’s merger agreement.
Dish says the Vegas beta will take at least 90 days, during which it plans to gather customer feedback and solve problems as its technology moves from the lab to the real world – President Charlie Ergen admits the network won’t work perfectly at first.
Dish also recently signed an agreement with AT&T, on which it will rely for most of its service as a wireless reseller (MVNO) while building its own network. In today’s call, Dish clarified the role its new partner will play in the beta launch. It says most of the network usage at the Las Vegas launch will be on its own network, with AT&T and current partner T-Mobile’s networks providing some roaming support.
Interested in trying it yourself? Anyone interested in testing the web as part of a beta program can sign up for more information Dish’s Project Genesis website.