Samsung is delivering 4G LTE small cells for Sprint, a TBR analyst tells Light Reading.
Michael Soper, networking and mobility analyst at Technology Business Research, noted in a report Friday that Samsung “continued rolling out small cells for Sprint.”
According to Light Reading, “Samsung is providing LTE small cells for outdoor and indoor use,” he tells us.
The South Korean networking vendor is already one of Sprint’s “Network Vision” suppliers for the 3G and 4G macro network upgrades.
Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent already received big contracts for Sprint’s macrocell upgrade. Sprint says the total incremental cost of the Network Vision program over the deployment period is between $4-5 billion.
Sprint plans to finish its deployment of its Network Vision network equipment by the middle of 2014. The project has involved the deployment of multi-mode base stations, the (now-completed) shutdown of its Nextel iDEN network, refarming of spectrum, improving CDMA coverage and the deployment of LTE on the 800 MHz, 1900 MHz and 2.6 GHz band. The 2.6 GHz band will be included on 5,000 towers by the end of the year, and across Sprint’s 38,000 towers after that.
Sprint controls some 100-150 MHz of spectrum at 2.6 GHz (Band 41). Presumably they will wholesale some of that to other carriers. Same deal with Dish’s 40 MHz in the 2.1 GHz band. T-Mobile and Sprint are apparently front runners for Dish as a network partner. Presumably, T-Mobile and Sprint will squeeze AT&T and Verizon on price within the next 6-12 months.
AT&T has only partial AWS and 2.3 GHz US coverage while Verizon’s incremental AWS capacity isn’t going to cut it, long term. Refarming the PCS and 800 MHz bands with Voice over LTE may be the first move for the duopolies.