The deal will see the trio work to expand T-Mobile’s 5G network as part of its three-year network upgrade plan

Yesterday saw both Nokia and Ericsson win big in their latest 5G deals with T-Mobile US, with deals worth an undisclosed but purportedly ‘multi-billion-dollar’ sum.

The relationship between the operator and the two vendors is very well established, spanning more than 20 years. Most recently, both Nokia and Ericsson scoring $3.5 billion contracts with T-Mobile back in 2018. The operator said expanding their partnership with the two companies was the natural decision for the next stage in the company’s 5G rollout.

“These agreements with our longstanding 5G partners Nokia and Ericsson will help us take our 5G leadership even further, delivering ever-better experiences for our customers for years to come,” said T-Mobile’s President of Technology Neville Ray.

It is interesting to note here that Samsung were also a partner of Sprint prior to the merger with T-Mobile; we can only assume that their lack of mention indicates that their share of T-Mobile’s network has been subsumed by Nokia and Ericsson. Samsung recorded its own $6.6 billion deal with Verizon back in September 2020.

When it comes to specific infrastructure technologies the vendors will be bringing to the table, Ericsson says it will be supplying equipment from its radio system portfolio, including active and passive antennas, as well as Massive MIMO capacity. Nokia’s contribution will be similar, supplying macro and small cells, as well as Massive MIMO for the 2.5 GHz band.

T-Mobile hopes that the deal will allow them to quickly incorporate some of the latest 5G technologies to their network, including voice of 5G (VoNR), network slicing, and multi-user massive MIMO.


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