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Tag Archives: Deutsche Telecom

Nokia, DT Demo the Beginnings of 5G

September 29, 2016 —

By Ernest Worthman

Executive Editor
AGL Small Cell Magazine

worthmanNokia and Deutsche Telekom just announced a working 5G demonstration of the low end of high data rates. They successfully conducted a series of demonstrations at the International Stadium Festival, a one-day athletics event held at the Berlin Olympia stadium recently. They claim they hit data rates just over 2 Gbps.

Now, while that is good, it is really just a proof of concept. To be in the ball park (no pun intended) data rates have to get into the 10s if not 100s of Gbps and support several hundred thousand users simultaneously. That is still quite a ways off. But I did recently see a demo at CTIA where Ericsson had a 5G data link showing 100+ Gbps data rates. Now this was just a test rig without any loading, but that is impressive.

The end game for this Nokia/DT demo was to show how 5G will be the platform to bring virtual and augmented reality, and other future digital entertainment services to the masses. So no matter where you are sitting at a sports event, it will be possible to see the game from many different angles and views. Wow – imagine being able to tailor the game to your preferences. So who cares if you have nosebleed seats if you can bring the video to you from the sidelines.

This is just one application. But sport is big money so the players are all eyeing this with great intensity. And it is a great use case for promising to significantly improve user experience by delivering fast, real-time high quality video and virtual reality content. I can’t wait until this come to gaming.

T-Mobile Ready to be Sprint’s White Knight, and It’s About Time

J. Sharpe Smith —

Another piece of the puzzle fell into place in Sprint’s quest to merge with T-Mobile this week, as the carrier’s majority owner Deutsche Telecom AG agreed to Sprint-owner Softbank’s plan to buy T-Mobile for a price tag of $32 billion, according to published reports.

The hook up with T-Mobile may be needed now more than ever, according to research by RBC Capital Markets, which reports that Sprint’s network modernization progress has stalled since February.

“Our ongoing monitoring of Sprint’s network upgrades indicate that overall progress has been slow on both voice- and data-related cell-site improvements since February,” RBC analyst Jonathan Atkin wrote. “However, there has been some incremental progress in data speed upgrades, particularly in the Spark markets (e.g., 75 data speed upgrades in New York versus February).” New York topped Sprint’s network upgrade list with 1,332 data speed upgrades, 32 data capacity upgrades and 21 voice upgrades, followed by Los Angeles with 1,009 data speed upgrades, 3 data capacity upgrades and no voice upgrades.

However, RBC is seeing increased activity in the 2.5 GHz band at Sprint as the 8T8R LTE equipment starts to ship.

Perhaps as a result of the slow progress of Sprint’s network upgrades, subscribers’ perceptions of its networks have suffered. Its voice score of -26 percent was the worst among the national carriers, and was down 9 percent from the previous survey results from January 2014, according to RBC’s research.

“Sprint also trailed its peers, which posted net negative scores in the single digits,” Atkins wrote. “Of note, we found that respondents in Sprint’s Spark markets reported worse network performance for both data and voice quality (18 percent and 29 percent net negative scores, respectively) versus respondents in non-Spark markets (9 percent and 22 percent net negative scores). Our previous survey of Spark versus non-Spark markets had shown an incremental improvement in Spark markets.”

Atkins noted in an interview with AGL Link that the pairing of Sprint and T-Mobile has some nice synergies for the latter’s sites in urban areas.

“Sprint’s 2.5 GHz spectrum position, coupled with the urban/metro focus of T-Mobile’s transmission locations, suggest to us that Sprint, upon consummating a merger with T-Mobile, would add 2.5 GHz LTE equipment at T-Mobile sites, rather than remove gear, in order to meet its network density requirements,” Atkins said. 

Now Sprint and T-Mobile just need to convince the government that having just three national carriers is sufficient for wireless competition. That may be easier said than done.


J. Sharpe Smith is senior editor, AGL Link.

DT’s U.S. CAPEX Investment in 2013 Good for Towers

Deutsche Telecom is putting its money where its mouth is in the coming year, funding T-Mobile’s  LTE and HSPA + rollouts, according to Rene Obermann, CEO, Deutsche Telecom,  at the carrier’s Capital Markets Day, Dec. 6, in Bonn, Germany.

The biggest chunk of Deutsche Telecom’s total CAPEX next year will be spent in the United States to the tune of $4.7B to $4.8B, compared with the last three years, which averaged $2.7B. Then it will drop to $3B in 2014 and 2015.

“While the company had already announced plans to spend $4B on its U.S. network modernization plan, we view this longer-term spend as especially positive in terms of further visibility for the tower sector’s pipeline,” wrote Jennifer Fritzsche, Wells Fargo senior analyst, a research note. “Recall, all three major tower players (AMT, CCI and SBAC) have secured master lease agreements.”

Flush with cash and additional spectrum from the failed AT&T/T-Mobile merger, Deutsche Telecom is spending CAPEX on refarming the spectrum in the PCS band, as well as network modernization. More than 37,000 sites are being modernized in 2012 and 2013.

“T-Mobile gained more spectrum in a deal with Verizon, which enabled us to build a more efficient network and to have better LTE coverage, and we announced a tower transaction worth $2.5 billion gives a chance to maintain our operational flexibility,” Obermann said.