T-Mobile Gambles its Chips at CES 2013

Las Vegas is certainly the place for betting one’s chips. And that’s exactly what T-Mobile is doing there this week as CES 2013 rolls along.

Although the mobile operator has already touted several breakthroughs at the convention since Monday, one revelation in particular is taking the cake. T-Mobile is shifting all focus toward its next-generation network.

T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray said that the carrier’s LTE build-out is going very, very well. Coincidentally, Las Vegas will be the company’s first LTE market launching before the close of January.

Best of all, plenty of T-Mobile’s existing handsets will be able to tap into the LTE network once an OTA software patch is released.

T-Mobile’s LTE coverage will grow quickly. By the middle of the year, T-Mobile says it will cover 100 million Americans with LTE 4G. That will expand to 200 million by the end of 2013. The company has enough spectrum to match AT&T and Verizon’s LTE network coverage, and it will even surpass Sprint’s LTE coverage by a factor of two.

“T-Mobile’s move to LTE is vital,” says Eric Zeman of InformationWeek, “as AT&T, Sprint and Verizon have all deployed LTE already.”