T-Mobile talks up its rural broadband ambitions
T-Mobile unveiled plans to expand into rural markets with 5G for mobile and home internet service. The company no longer comes from the position of being a scrappy upstart, or the fourth-largest national carrier. It’s now the second-largest operator in the US, and is leveraging its acquisition of Sprint to set its sights on smaller and rural markets as part of its expansion. Jon Freier, EVP of T-Mobile’s consumer group, called small and rural markets “a huge opportunity” for the carrier and noted that the company is “well on-pace” to open 200 retail stores in 2021 along with hiring 1,000 “mobile hometown experts,” who will be available in cities and towns where the carrier doesn’t have a retail presence. The challenge that the industry faces in bridging the digital divide, according to EVP of T-Mobile Emerging Products Dow Draper, is in actually closing the broadband gaps that exist in every market across the country––and T-Mobile thinks that fixed wireless access is a faster and more cost-effective way of doing so than running fiber to every home. The goal, as Draper describes it, is to provide a cost-effective and efficient technology deployment that provides a new service option that meets subscriber needs in rural, urban and suburban markets.
CCA: T-Mobile US talks up its rural ambitions