Satellite service provider Dish Network pressed ahead with construction preparations for a planned 5G network, issuing a request for proposals (RFP) from fibre backhaul providers to light its towers and data centres.
The move comes as the company aims to build a 5G network covering 70 per cent of the US population by June 2023, to fulfil a commitment it made to the US Department of Justice as part of a deal to win approval for T-Mobile US and Sprint’s proposed merger.
Jeff McSchooler, the company’s EVP of wireless operations, said in a statement Dish Network is “exploring varying transport infrastructures” through the RFP, adding its construction of an entirely new network offers the “opportunity to apply fresh ideas”.
In addition to seeking input from local, regional and national transport partners which have historically supported its video business, he said the company is looking to “learn from non-traditional partners as well, like utilities and municipalities that may be deploying fibre in their communities”.
The RFP is the fifth issued by the company in relation to its 5G plans: an initial call for information about network design and equipment pricing was sent to vendors in July 2019. Three other requests covering software, construction and components have been issued since.
Dish Network chairman Charlie Ergen previously said the company is aiming to begin its 5G rollout this year.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back