T-Mobile has announced its first Home Internet trial, where it will be offering up 50Mbps speeds for around $50 per month, with no data caps. The only catch is that it is limited to around 50,000 people, and T-Mobile hasn't detailed how users would be able to sign up for this plan.
The Un-Carrier stated in its press release that this is mostly targeted towards rural and under-served areas of the country. The service is going to be running on T-Mobile's LTE network, so due to network constraints, T-Mobile is only offering this for up to 50,000 customers, or about .04-percent of the US population. It does hope to offer it to over 96-percent of the US population by 2024, however.
T-Mobile does also note that it expects to get 50Mbps speed in these areas. There are going to be plenty of variables at play there, but 50Mbps is pretty solid, especially on LTE in rural areas. Considering those areas are usually a bit slower. It'll be priced at $50 per month, which puts it pretty competitively in-line with other ISPs (depending on the area). T-Mobile also says that there will be no data caps, which is pretty impressive. Seeing as almost all ISPs have a data cap – usually around 1TB – that is a pretty big deal.
John Legere, T-Mobile's CEO, announced plans for home broadband about two weeks ago, in regards to the New T-Mobile. Legere stated that T-Mobile is "walking the walk and laying the foundation for a world where we can take the fight to Big Cable on behalf of consumers and offer real choice, competition and savings to Americans nationwide." T-Mobile has already taken on the wireless industry, and turned things around pretty quickly. Now it looks like T-Mobile's next move is to be an ISP. Of course, a big reason for that is 5G, which T-Mobile will be rolling out later this year (it's technically available now, but it doesn't offer any 5G devices yet).
Announcing its plans to become an ISP, and going beyond just being a wireless carrier, T-Mobile is looking to please the FCC and Department of Justice, which are still mulling over its merger with Sprint. The merger was announced nearly a year ago, but it still has not been approved and finalized. T-Mobile does still expect that to happen in the first half of the year though. It is planning to make good use of the 2.5GHz spectrum that Sprint has (that it acquired from Clearwire many years ago) which is going to offer more bandwidth, and that is the recipe for success as an ISP.
The only real question remaining for T-Mobile's Home Internet service, is how do you sign up. T-Mobile did not mention how to do that. But that is likely because this is an invite-only pilot program. T-Mobile should be opening up a web page soon, where you can register your interest, so you can tell T-Mobile that you are interested in using its Home Internet service. It should be releasing more details pretty soon.