T-Mobile says it’ll launch a 5G home internet service with fast speeds, easy installation, and low prices that will reach half of all US homes within five years and meaningfully shake up the woefully anti-competitive cable industry. There’s just one catch: T-Mobile says this only comes true if its Sprint merger is approved.
In a blog post and Federal Communications Commission filing today, T-Mobile outlines in the most detail yet what its 5G home internet service will look like. The company started divulging some details around the offering last September, but with today’s CEO-written blog post, T-Mobile is starting to advertise its promises in a far more public fashion.
T-Mobile says it plans to create a true cable competitor using 5G, offering speeds at 100 Mbps or higher. It’ll come at an unspecified lower cost, and customers will be able to set up the system themselves, so they won’t have to wait around for someone to install it. T-Mobile thinks it can have 9.5 million customers within five years, and save customers up to $13 billion in that time because of the increased competition.
It’s an exciting picture, but the thing to remember is that this is all a big, beautiful dream that T-Mobile is describing to get its merger approved.
If T-Mobile and Sprint merge, the United States would shrink from four major wireless carriers down to three. The previous leader of the FCC repeatedly said that four carriers are necessary to maintain a competitive environment. And while the current leader doesn’t seem to believe that, this general concern is a big element of what’s holding up the 10-month-old merger agreement.