T-Mobile Poland marks 6,000th base station with carrier aggregation

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By David Morelo, Europe Correspondent

T-Mobile Poland has expanded its array of base stations with support for carrier aggregation, in a bid to dramatically increase the capacity of its LTE network.

The mobile operator first launched base stations with carrier aggregation – a technology that allows two or more carriers into a single data channel –  in February 2016, eventually launching some 600 of them throughout that year.

In Q1 2017, T-Mobile Poland implemented the technology in 400 additional base stations.

“It took us twelve years to build our nationwide GSM network, eight years to build our UMTS network, and only 3 years to build our LTE network,” said T-Mobile Poland External Communications unit manager Konrad Mróz.

Currently, T-Mobile Poland has around 3,000 base stations that apply two-carrier aggregation for download speeds of up to 220 Mbps.

Nearly 800 base stations apply four-carrier aggregation (800 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, and 2600 MHz) for download speeds reaching up to 590 Mbps. According to the operator, its base stations with the highest speeds are located in Warsaw, Poznan, Katowice, Krakow, Tricity, and Wroclaw.

Nokia, T-mobile announce key US$3.5 billion, multi-year 5G network agreement for US rollout

Nokia has struck a key U$3.5 billion agreement with T-Mobile to support the rollout of the operator’s planned nationwide US 5G network.

Under the agreement, Nokia will provide T-Mobile with its complete end-to-end 5G technology, software and services portfolio. It said it will be assisting “the Un-carrier in its efforts to bring its 5G network to market for customers in the critical first years of the 5G cycle.”

Nokia will help build T-Mobile’s 5G network with 600 MHz and 28 GHz millimeter wave 5G capabilities compliant with 3GPP 5G New Radio (NR) standards.

Specifically, T-Mobile will utilise a range of products across Nokia’s end-to-end 5G technology, software and services portfolio, including commercial AirScale radio platforms and cloud-native core, AirFrame hardware, CloudBand software, SON and 5G Acceleration Services.

Nokia said the collaboration will see the firms developing, testing and launching next generation of connectivity services covering a wide range of industries, including enterprise, smart cities, utilities, transportation, health, manufacturing, retail, agriculture and government agencies.

Ashish Chowdhary
Ashish Chowdhary

“Nokia and T-Mobile will advance the large-scale deployment of 5G services throughout the United States,” said Nokia chief customer operations officer Ashish Chowdhary.

“This is a testament to our companies’ strong and productive working relationship, one which has produced several important technological milestones in recent months, and which now allows us to make 5G a commercial reality.”

Nokia said 5G promises to enable faster speeds, massive connectivity, decade-long battery life for sensors and super-responsive and reliable networks for customers. “This will unleash on-demand virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) experiences, driverless vehicles, medical monitoring, advanced industrial automation services, and so much more – all requiring ubiquitous low latency connectivity,” the vendor added.

“We are all in on 5G,” said T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray. “Every dollar we spend is a 5G dollar, and our agreement with Nokia underscores the kind of investment we’re making to bring customers a mobile, nationwide 5G network. “

T-Mobile, Sprint to merge in all-out US 5G offensive

T-Mobile US and Sprint have entered into a definitive agreement to merge in an all-stock transaction at a fixed exchange ratio of 0.10256 T-Mobile shares for each Sprint share or the equivalent of 9.75 Sprint shares for each T-Mobile US share.

The deal sees the third and fourth largest mobile providers in the US combining. Sprint was valued at US$26 billion based on its last closing price, and T-Mobile was last valued at US$55 billion.

Based on closing share prices on April 27, this represents a total implied enterprise value of approximately US$59 billion for Sprint and approximately US$146 billion for the combined company.

“This combination will create a fierce competitor with the network scale to deliver more for consumers and businesses in the form of lower prices, more innovation, and a second-to-none network experience – and do it all so much faster than either company could on its own,” said T-Mobile US President and CEO  John Legere. “As industry lines blur and we enter the 5G era, consumers and businesses need a company with the disruptive culture and capabilities to force positive change on their behalf.”

In a statement, the firms said the combined company will be named T-Mobile, and flagged it will be a “force for positive change in the US wireless, video, and broadband industries.”

“The new company will be able to light up a broad and deep 5G network faster than either company could separately,” the firms said. “T-Mobile deployed nationwide LTE twice as fast as Verizon and three times faster than AT&T, and the combined company is positioned to do the same in 5G with deep spectrum assets and network capacity.”

Following closing, the new company will be headquartered in Bellevue, Wash., with a second headquarters in Overland Park, Kan.

John Legere, current President and CEO of T-Mobile US will serve as chief exec, and Mike Sievert, current CEO of T-Mobile, will serve as President and CEO of the combined company.

Tim Höttges, current T-Mobile US Chairman of the Board, will serve as Chairman of the Board for the new company. Masayoshi Son, current SoftBank Group Chairman and CEO, and Marcelo Claure, current CEO of Sprint, will serve on the board of the new company.

competitors to follow suit, as they always do, which will benefit the entire country. I am confident this combination will spur job creation and ensure opportunities for Sprint employees as part of a larger, stronger combined organization, and I am thrilled that Kansas City will be a second headquarters for the merged company.”