Recently, T-Mobile has been looking for less and less Un-carrier as it formulated itself as before, and much more than A Carrier. To that end, the company released a few announcements today: a new milestone in 5G coverage and that CEO Mike Sievert will deliver a keynote speech at CES at a location recently used by Verizon.
The Consumer Technology Association and T-Mobile today gave a keynote speech where (you guessed it) 5G was the topic of the hour. That’s been the topic of that keynote speaker for the past couple of years, when Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg hits the 5G hype and covering approximately the same points of speech in 2019 and earlier this year.
Sievert will take the microphone from Vestberg early that year, which is likely to be a key year for 5G in the United States. Verizon is starting to use the C-band frequencies in which it has invested heavily. Undoubtedly, Sievert hopes to be able to highlight T-Mobile’s relative spectrum advantage thanks to Sprint’s acquisition last year.
He also highlights milestones, as T-Mobile announced today: 305 million people are covered by the company’s slower “extended-range” 5G and 165 million people by the faster, mid-band “ultra-capacity” 5G network. Just under half a year left T-Mobile is pushing towards its goal of reaching 200 million people with peak capacity of 5G by the end of 2021.
Instead, Verizon, which has to wait for existing tenants to clear the new C-band spectrum, expects to reach 100 million people in the middle band 5G in early 2022. Sievert probably way debate the network’s minimal efforts to adhere to its merger commitments and help Dish set itself as a competitor, although the deal is responsible for supplying T-Mobile’s valuable mid-range spectrum and its relative “lead” in 5G, but will withdraw.
T-Mobile is eager to seize the moment Verizon and AT&T are working to get the C-band up and running, but the more time it spends in the spotlight, the harder it is to maintain a cool, weaker picture. In the meantime, we can certainly expect to see less red and much more magenta on consumer technology on the biggest stage early next year.