Samsung can become the 5G smartphone leader as the South Korean consumer electronics company has won a 5G smartphone deal – second deal in a week’s time — from US telecom operator AT&T.
This is the second 5G smartphone deal for Samsung. Yesterday, Verizon, the main rival of AT&T, announced its 5G smartphone deal with Samsung.
Samsung is the #1 smartphone maker ahead of Huawei and Apple. Samsung is also the #1 4G smartphone maker.
Samsung will be in a position to dominate the 5G smartphone market for some time because Apple will rely on Intel chipsets — that will be available in 2020 — to launch its 5G iPhone.
Both AT&T and Verizon will bring Samsung’s 5G smartphone in the first half of 2019 when their 5G mobile network will be ready for commercial purposes. Since AT&T and Verizon are the two leading mobile operators in US, Samsung will be in a commanding position in 5G smartphone market.
This 5G smartphone will support AT&T’s 5G network that will be introduced before the end of 2018.
Earlier, AT&T announced NETGEAR Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot — the first standards-based mobile 5G device to access a live millimeter wave 5G network. The world’s first mmWave mobile 5G device will be available this month.
“Together with Samsung, we plan to bring the best in technology and innovation to our customers,” David Christopher, president of AT&T Mobility and Entertainment, said.
AT&T is also working with Samsung to create America’s first manufacturing-focused 5G Innovation Zone. The goal of the testbed is to use 5G to enable robotic manufacturing capabilities to understand the impact of 5G on smart factories.
The 5G smartphone shipments are expected to reach 110 million units by 2021, said Counterpoint Research. 5G smartphones will be a premium — not affordable to majority customers — in the beginning. The US, South Korea, Japan and China will be spending on 5G network deployments.
AT&T’s mobile 5G services will be available in at least 12 cities this year, 19 cities in early 2019. AT&T has installed the latest mobile 5G network equipment in select areas of the 12 markets.
AT&T’s 5G cities this year include Atlanta, Charlotte, N.C. Dallas, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Fla., Louisville, Ky., Oklahoma City, New Orleans, Raleigh, N.C., San Antonio and Waco, Texas.
Parts of 7 additional cities for the 5G launch in the first half of 2019 include Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Nashville, Orlando, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose, Calif.
In September, AT&T selected Samsung as one of its technology suppliers to help AT&T build its mobile, 5G network.
Huawei, the second largest smartphone maker, is silent about its 5G smartphone plans. The China-based smartphone maker may face challenges in the US 5G market because of its connection with the home turf.