President of Sprint business tells us about 5G, T-Mobile, robots


Latency is the most powerful aspect of forthcoming mobile 5G
networks, says Jan Geldmacher, president of Sprint
Business, and may usher in the true age of the
internet of things

Smartphones became truly powerful after the dawn of 4G networks.
The improved speed and capacity of LTE 4G connections gave phones
the juice to power myriad applications and services. It was a
watershed moment.

Now, nearly a decade later, the industry has reached another
landmark: the launch of
. It’s easy to overhype 5G, and Geldmacher didn’t want to
overdo it, but it’s safe to say he’s excited about the

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If you ask Sprint, its competitors are trying to “make
lemonade out of the lemons they have.” Sprint believes it will
provide the best 5G service with its massive spectrum holdings in
the 2.5GHz band. …

Latency — the time between when a device makes a request over
the network and receives a response — falls in the 10
milliseconds to 100-millisecond range in LTE 4G networks. Along
with gigabit speeds, one of the key improvements of 5G is to drop
latency down to one to five milliseconds. This may not sound like
much of an improvement, but it is.

Think robotics and automation. Geldmacher said Sprint is working
with Boston Dynamics to see how well robots can be controlled
remotely. The low latency allows a controller in Boston to safely
operate a robot located in Pittsburgh, for example. This isn’t
yet possible with 4G. Similarly, Sprint is working with a handful
of companies in Greenville, South Carolina, on autonomous vehicle
technology, and in Peachtree Corner, Georgia, on air-based

With latency essentially eliminated, 5G represents a paradigm
shift in what things can do.

That doesn’t mean smartphones are going away. Geldmacher
believes smartphones will continue on indefinitely in one form or
another. He didn’t want to speculate too much on what that form
might be, though it’s safe to assume smartphones will become even
more powerful than they already are.

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Geldmacher also noted Sprint is ready to go it alone should

its proposed merger with T-Mobile
fails to be approved. The
deal has been given the green light by the Committee on Foreign
Investment in the U.S. but is still awaiting approval from the FCC
and DOJ. Should everything work out as Sprint hopes, the company
believes combining T-Mobile’s 600MHz low-band spectrum with its
own 2.5GHz mid-band spectrum will give it the leverage it needs to
fend off AT&T
Verizon Wireless

(And yes, Geldmacher thinks AT&T is making a fool of itself
by insisting that LTE
is “5G E”.

Whether or not Sprint and T-Mobile
merge, Sprint plans to launch a 5G phone with LG in
the next few months, with a mobile hotspot and Samsung smartphone
coming later in the year.

smartphones from LG, Samsung could launch in February, retail in

Source: FS – Android
President of Sprint business tells us about 5G, T-Mobile, robots