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>> T-Mobile is gathering speed in the race to be the first to roll out next generation mobile technology across the entire United States. The third biggest US wireless carrier announced in Monday a $3.5 billion deal with Nokia to upgrade T-Mobile's network to what is known as 5G. This is the biggest step towards 5G technology by any mobile carrier in the world.
Reducing mobile download speeds to seconds from minutes is just one benefit of 5G, says Reuters telecom and cable reporter Sheila Dang.>> 5G is the network that's gonna be needed to introduce things like self-driving cars because those cars can talk to each other better over a faster network.
So we're gonna see new technologies like robotic machines and things like smart cities where machines can actually talk more to each other.>> So far wireless service providers have been slow to move toward the technology as heavy debt loads and cutthroat customer price plans put a squeeze on spending.
Larger rivals like AT&T and Verizon are only testing the technology in a few major US cities. But T-Mobile has bigger plans.>> They want to build 5G in 30 cities this year. And so they've named five, which includes New York and LA. And they want to be able to launch it next year when the first 5G smartphones roll out.
So their plan has always been to play the longer game.>> And 5G investments comes as T-Mobile tries to win Washington approval for it's merger with Sprint. The two vow to keep their 5G build out separate once they merge arguing their total investment will give the US the best chance of keeping a technology lead over China, something the Trump White House desperately wants to keep.