T-Mobile Adds More 700 Mhz Spectrum To Its Network

August 3, 2014 - Written By Phil Bourget

T-Mobile has been working its hardest in a long time recently to get its hands on some 700 Mhz frequency spectrum, to service its customers and expand its network’s coverage.  And today, we saw a ULS (Universal Licensing System) application for the addition of the 700 Mhz spectrum in 38 counties in Indiana, Illinois, and Kentucky to its network. First, the counties, of course.  In Indiana we have Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Knox, Martin, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh, and Warrick being added.  From Kentucky we have Ballard, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Crittenden, Daviess, Graves, Hancock, Henderson, Hopkins, Livingston, Lyon, McCracken, McLean, Marshall, Muhlenberg, Ohio, Union, and Webster. And finally we have Illinois, where Crawford, Edwards, Lawrence, Massac, Richland, Wabash, Wayne, and White are being added.  The application, which you can read the original of here, is for the addition of A, B, and E block, lower band LTE.  Next is what this means for T-Mobile.

The 700 Mhz frequency, for those unaware, is great for penetrating buildings, specifically cement or concrete buildings, and we have a lot of those in the United States.   But what kind of data, though I mentioned it before, is involved and carried within the 700 Mhz frequency?  LTE.  LTE that can penetrate buildings better than normal (2100 and 1900 Mhz, like some of T-Mobile’s current spectrum dedicated to its LTE network). The T-Mobile expansion obviously puts some 700 Mhz spectrum.  But it also brings T-Mobile and its previously-smaller network and spectrum closer to par, with Verizon Wireless, who currently has 700 Mhz for the upper C block of it, and AT&T has the B and D block 700 Mhz spectrum.  What this means for T-Mobile customers is great too.  This addition to the network covers only the spectrum, adding no new customers, but affecting up to 1.1 million people.

For the technically aware and savvy, here are the details of the addition.  Each county involved will get 12 Mhz, which will be enough for ‘5+5 LTE’ in the new part of the spectrum.  As you may remember, April was the month of Verizon selling some of the A block of 700 Mhz to T-Mobile and that’s already been activated and is in use, so this new deal will likely pass and quickly.  Remember, you can check out the application yourself in the link above, but are you excited to get reasonable LTE inside buildings?  Let us know.