Nokia gets AT&T’s C-Band deployment work to support 5G network

nokia c band

Nokia announced that it will be supporting AT&T’s C-band deployment, a development that is not the least bit surprising given their history together.

The first phase of the C-Band auction opened up 280 MHz of spectrum with 100 MHz of spectrum available for 5G deployments by the end of this year.

Nokia’s C-Band portfolio includes support for both 5G standalone (SA) networks and non-standalone (NSA) networks, cloud-based implementations and Open RAN products, providing AT&T with flexibility for its 5G deployment.

The Finnish multinational telecommunication’s C-Band RAN technology will interwork with existing Nokia LTE RAN equipment deployed by AT&T for a powerful user experience.

“Nokia is ready to support the launch of 5G services into this valuable new spectrum on our customers’ timelines by leveraging our powerful portfolio of C-Band solutions,” Ed Cholerton, President of Nokia North America, said.

“By being the first to demonstrate a live C-Band network in the U.S. in 2020. Our flexible and comprehensive portfolio will enable AT&T to enhance its 5G services in areas across the nation,” he added.

AT&T role

In addition, AT&T said last week that it will be spending on the order of $6 billion to $8 billion on its C-band rollout, which will begin when the first batch of spectrum becomes available at the end of this year, although a lot of planning and pre-deployment work occurs before that. Most of its C-band spend will be happening between 2022-2024.

The American telecommunication company will use Nokia’s C-band portfolio to boost network capacity and support both indoor and outdoor 5G coverage in parts of the U.S.

Included in the deal are Nokia’s Massive MIMO antenna solutions, macro remote radio heads (RRH) and next-generation AirScale baseband equipment.

Igal Elbaz, Senior Vice President of Wireless and Access Technology AT&T said: “AT&T is committed to bringing the power of 5G to businesses and communities across the nation, and our C-Band deployments with Nokia will help add 5G capacity where it’s needed.”

He stressed that “Nokia has been our trusted collaborator for more than 20 years as we’ve rolled out each generation of wireless technology, and its C-Band portfolio brings the right capabilities to help enable AT&T to deliver an exciting and powerful 5G experience that our subscribers have come to expect from us.”

It should be noted that the ‘Mid-band’ C-Band spectrum provides a good balance of both capacity and coverage, while also allowing rapid 5G rollout.

According to the company, it has invested $105 billion in America between 2016 to 2020, in investment and acquisitions of spectrum and wireless operations.

It claims to have covered 230 million customers across the country while its 5G+ network is now live in 38 cities in the US.