T-Mobile US has sought regulatory approval for a deal to acquire Local Multipoint Distribution Service (LMDS) millimetre wave (mmWave) spectrum in the 28GHz-31GHz bands covering Ohio, from Akron-based First Communications. Fierce Wireless quotes the cellco’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) filing as saying: ‘The requested spectrum assignments will allow T-Mobile to deploy the 27500MHz to 28350MHz portion of the licences for next generational 5G mobile services in accordance with recent technologies that can leverage mmWave bands for fixed and mobile wireless communications.’ The remaining portion of spectrum is expected to be used for microwave backhaul.
TeleGeography notes that T-Mobile’s attitude towards the suitability of mmWave spectrum for 5G technology has undergone a subtle change in recent months. Although the frequencies have long been coveted by AT&T and Verizon, T-Mobile has previously been dismissive of its rivals’ plans. In a notable about-turn, however, the cellco last month urged the FCC to initiate an auction for mmWave spectrum later this year.