T-Mobile US launched a pilot of a new wireless home broadband service, marking the start of a bid to disrupt the segment.

The operator is initially aiming to connect up to 50,000 customers in rural and underserved areas of the country via fixed wireless access (FWA) LTE, offering speeds of around 50Mb/s. Service will be offered by invitation-only to start, priced $55 per month (or $50 with an AutoPay discount) with no data limit.

Customers eligible to participate in the pilot will be contacted this week with information on how to sign up: routers will be supplied for free.

In a statement, CEO John Legere (pictured) said the move will lay the “foundation for a world where we can take the fight to big cable on behalf of consumers and offer real choice, competition and savings to Americans nationwide”.

T-Mobile said the selective nature of the pilot is due to capacity constraints, but noted it plans to expand service to cover more than half of US households by 2024 if its merger with Sprint is approved.

Though the service will run on LTE to start, T-Mobile COO Mike Sievert previously detailed plans to upgrade to 5G at a later date.

The operator isn’t the only one dabbling with FWA home broadband: Verizon, AT&T and US Cellular all have similar offers on the table.