T-Mobile adds 710,000 phone subscribers despite limited 5G coverage

T-Mobile US said it added 710,000 phone subscribers in the second quarter of 2019 against 686,000 additions a year earlier – despite limited 5G network coverage.
T-Mobile retail network

The third-largest U.S. mobile carrier said revenue rose nearly 4 percent to $10.98 billion in Q2 2019.

The company’s net income rose 20 percent to $939 million, or $1.09 per share, in the quarter, from $782 million, or 92 cents a share, a year earlier.

T-Mobile is awaiting approval for its $26.5 billion deal to buy smaller rival Sprint in order to take on bigger rivals such as Verizon Communications and AT&T.

Capex of T-Mobile increased 10 percent to $1.8 billion in Q2 2019 including capitalized interest of $125 million.

The increase in Capex was primarily driven by growth in network build as T-Mobile began deployment of low band spectrum, including 600 MHz, and started laying the groundwork for the launch of 5G network in the second half of 2019.

Nokia and Ericsson are the 5G network suppliers of T-Mobile US. Both Nokia and Ericsson posted increase in their network business from North America citing 5G equipment deals with mobile operators.

T-Mobile forecasts that Capex is expected to be at the very high end of the range of $5.8 and $6.1 billion in 2019 because the operator will be spending on the 5G network and 600 MHz deployment.

Huawei Technologies, the #1 telecom network maker, had lost the $3.5 billion deal with T-Mobile because the United States federal administration does not believe in the security capability of Huawei equipment.

T-Mobile had spent $842 million during the FCC auction in June 2019 – which more than quadruples its mmWave spectrum from 104 MHz to 471 MHz across the 24, 28, and 39 GHz frequency bands.

John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile, said: “We continue to build out our 5G network with the deployment of 600 MHz on 5G equipment.”

T-Mobile is building the foundation for its standards-based 5G network across the U.S. in 2019, utilizing both 600 MHz and mmWave spectrum.

It plans to launch 5G on 600 MHz footprint later this year when compatible smartphones are available. It expects to have the first nationwide 5G network in 2020.

T-Mobile on June 28, 2019 introduced its 5G network using mmWave spectrum in six cities including New York and Los Angeles.

T-Mobile has 31 MHz of 600 MHz low band spectrum. It cleared 185 million POPs, and will clear spectrum covering approximately 280 million POPs by year-end 2019.

T-Mobile deployed 4G LTE network on 600 MHz spectrum, using 5G-ready equipment, with 1.2 million square miles already lit up, covering 156 million POPs in nearly 6,600 cities and towns in 46 states and Puerto Rico.

Baburajan K