C-Spire: Mobile 5G launch in Mississippi with 200Mbps peak speeds using a combo of 5G and LTE Advanced

C Spire today began rolling out its pre-standard 5G mobile service in Mississippi with plans to add more areas by the end of this year.  Brookhaven in south Mississippi’s Lincoln County and Columbus in north Mississippi’s Lowndes County were strategically chosen as the initial 5G markets as part of C Spire efforts to make the technology available and provide the best network experience for customers.

The C Spire 5G launch is occurring in conjunction with the launch of the latest Apple iPhone 12 or iPhone 12 Pro required for 5G service.  More 5G-enabled smartphones from other handset manufacturers, including Samsung, will be available for use in early 2021 along with expansion in other markets.  The use of the Apple 5G iPhones implies this is a 5G-NR (3GPPP Rel 15) NSA implementation.

Specifically, parts of Hattiesburg, parts of Madison and Ridgeland in the greater Jackson metropolitan area and the Mississippi Gulf Coast, are expected to be 5G capable by the end of 2020 with more areas of the company’s footprint coming soon, according to Brian Caraway, General Manager of C Spire’s wireless division.

C Spire Begins Rollout of Next-generation 5G Service in Mississippi Responsive image

“We’re bringing consumers the benefits of new 5G wireless network technology where they need it the most with fast speeds, better service and an improved experience,” Caraway said.  “Using a backbone of fiber optic infrastructure, we’re rolling out a better 5G network for now and for the future.”

5G implementation is part of over $200 million in recent network enhancements, including the deployment of additional Band 41 carriers with carrier aggregation, increased cell site antenna capacity using advanced features like 12-layer MIMO, 256 QAM modulation for better spectral efficiency, network-wide optimization for balanced data delivery and extensive coverage of 4G LTE Advanced announced previously this year.

During the transition to 5G across the network, Caraway said C Spire plans to continue to use improvements and enhancements offered from its current 4G LTE Advanced technology to ensure that customers have the best network experience uniquely designed for their needs and region.

“We’re deploying 5G at a variety of spectrums – so many customers will have a faster experience on a 5G network while others may still see the best performance on our 4G LTE deployments,” Caraway added.  “5G is a new technology that will improve with time, but regardless of where you live, C Spire is dedicated to providing the best network experience for the most customers possible.”  Indeed, C-Spire says that they are delivering peak speeds up to 200Mbps through a combination of the most advanced LTE and 5G technologies.

C Spire, a Mississippi-based telecommunications and technology services company, operates the nation’s largest privately-owned mobile services firm and sixth largest in the U.S. industry.  The rollout is part of the firm’s broader efforts to bring consumers and businesses next-generation 5G benefits now and in the future.  The company also installed new base stations and software at its 1,200-plus cell sites last year, resulting in a 20 percent average speed boost across its network.

References:

www.cspire.com/5g

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/c-spire-begins-rollout-of-next-generation-5g-service-in-mississippi-301158950.html

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/c-spire-rolls-out-real-5g-speeds-in-31-mississippi-counties-300992355.html

2 thoughts on “C-Spire: Mobile 5G launch in Mississippi with 200Mbps peak speeds using a combo of 5G and LTE Advanced

  1. 11 Nov 2020 update from Light Reading:

    “We’re deploying 5G at a variety of spectrums – so many customers will have a faster experience on a 5G network while others may still see the best performance on our 4G LTE deployments,” explained Brian Caraway, general manager of C Spire’s wireless division, in a release.

    Those comments acknowledge a painful truth among network operators: Most initial 5G offerings in the US on lowband spectrum aren’t much faster than existing 4G networks. “5G is a new technology that will improve with time, but regardless of where you live, C Spire is dedicated to providing the best network experience for the most customers possible,” Caraway said.

    C Spire said its 5G efforts stem from $200 million spent on recent 4G and 5G network enhancements that include the deployment of new 2.5GHz spectrum as well as the addition of new technologies like carrier aggregation and 256 QAM.

    C Spire also plans to deploy 5G on its 28GHz millimeter wave (mmWave) spectrum holdings at some point in the future. This highband spectrum can support blazing-fast speeds, but suffers from relatively short transmission ranges.

    C Spire said its initial 5G rollout will start in select Mississippi markets this year and will expand to other, unspecified markets next year.

    “As a privately-held company, we do not publicly disclose more detailed information about our plans for providing 5G until the service is available to customers,” the company wrote in response to questions from Light Reading.

    C Spire’s overall rollout plans largely dovetail with similar efforts by its larger rivals. For example, C Spire said it will likely use Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) technology in the future “as needed.” Verizon recently switched DSS on nationwide, while AT&T has been testing it in some markets. T-Mobile, meantime, has said it will avoid DSS as it deploys 5G on its 600MHz and 2.5GHz holdings.

    Like AT&T and Verizon, C Spire said it is using the non-standalone (NSA) version of 5G for its initial launches and will be testing and potentially launching the standalone (SA) version of 5G next year. T-Mobile, for its part, switched on SA earlier this year.

    And like AT&T and Verizon, C Spire said it is “interested” in open RAN technology – which promises to separate 5G hardware and software, potentially lowering costs – “but it is not a technology we are currently deploying in our network.”

    As for offering fixed wireless Internet services over its new 5G network – as T-Mobile and others plan to do – C Spire said its initial 5G efforts are targeted at mobility services, but that “does not limit or prohibit our use of other 5G services like fixed wireless 5G.”

    Finally, it’s worth noting that C Spire now officially joins the ranks of 5G operators. The carrier claimed to be the first in the US with 5G in 2018, though it did so with fixed wireless equipment using proprietary technologies based on the 802.11 Wi-Fi standard.

    C Spire provides wireless service to roughly 1 million customers across Mississippi, Alabama and elsewhere. The operator sits behind U.S. Cellular – which counts around 5 million customers – as one of the nation’s biggest regional wireless network operators. U.S. Cellular launched its initial 5G services last year.

    https://www.lightreading.com/opticalip/c-spire-opens-up-about-its-5g-rollout/d/d-id/765356?

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