DISH Network made a big splash into the world of wireless when Judge Victor Marrero ruled in their favor in February 2020 in an ongoing court case. The ruling finalized the long-awaited merger between T-Mobile & Sprint, which essentially allowed for DISH to be named as the fourth major wireless network in the U.S., something the satellite cable company has been working towards for nearly a decade.
However, DISH still has plenty of work to do to actually become the fourth major carrier. For now, customers of Boost Mobile (Sprint’s prepaid service) will become DISH’s as they operate as an MVNO, or mobile virtual network operator, on Boost’s network. This equals around 9.4 million subscribers that DISH will now have access to as they lease space to Sprint & T-Mobile’s wireless networks and continue to sell services, though now as a reseller, under the same Boost label.
What About 5G Services?
As most people who have been keeping up with DISH’s plans the last few years know, DISH has been criticized for many years for what experts and fellow industry members dub their “hoarding” of valuable spectrum that they have so far not put to any use. Now that the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint has officially gone through, however, DISH will be utilizing its generous spectrum portfolio to create a virtualized 5G network that they hope will be able to deliver “full, standalone 5G to America.”
Along with their own spectrum, they’ll also be using some that from Sprint that they will combine to not only create this network completely from scratch, but do it at a cost that will be a fraction of what other wireless networks in the game have spent. This promise, in particular, is one that has experts in the field feeling very skeptical, as many believe that DISH is severely underestimating just how much it will be to produce their estimated amount of towers and infrastructure from the ground up by 2022.
How Does This Change Boost?
Charlie Ergen, Chairman of DISH, and his fellow executives have promised great things for Boost’s new service under their company. Though most of the plans for the new Boost have been kept under wraps, one thing we do know is that Boost customers will now have access to T-Mobile’s wireless network, giving them expanded coverage and therefore better service and reliability.
With many questions still in the air and most of the plans moving forward still kept quiet, onlookers will simply have to watch and see how DISH’s next moves play out. However, it is expected that, per an extension given to the company, DISH will have a successful 5G network that covers 70% of the country by June 2023.