With more people working from home, home-schooling, and distancing themselves from social activity due to Covid-19, Dish Network is extending support to T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T by lending the use of its spectrum.
In an unprecedented move of goodwill, particularly after being accused of ‘hoarding’ spectrum over the past year, Dish’s spectrum loan should help stabilize the anticipated strain on 4G LTE networks. Although none of the carriers have yet experienced outages or service disruptions, adding more spectrum is a proactive measure that will help strengthen the networks if voice and data usage spike in the coming weeks.
PC Mag outlined how spectrum will be distributed to fit each carriers’ existing network over the next 60 days, with T-Mobile getting low-band Band 71 spectrum, Verizon getting some Band 66 AWS-3 spectrum, and AT&T using 20 MHz of Band 66 spectrum. According to PC Mag, AT&T wireless customers “could notice up to a 20 Mbps uptick in data performance while the spectrum loan is in effect.”
Added to its spectrum loan from Dish, T-Mobile is getting additional spectrum in the 600 MHz from several other companies including Comcast and NewLevel for 60 days. As reported by The Verge, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a press release, “This temporary authority will help T-Mobile better serve customers who, like all of us, are making significant adjustments to their daily lives to minimize in-person interactions and slow the spread of Covid-19.”
AT&T, Comcast, Verizon and others agree not to overcharge customers and to refrain from disconnecting customers over late bills during the coronavirus crisis.