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T-Mobile Gets Additional Spectrum Due to Coronavirus Outbreak

Zacks Equity Research

T-Mobile US, Inc. TMUS has secured the Federal Communications Commission’s (“FCC”) Special Temporary Authority to use additional spectrum in the 600 MHz Band to meet increased customer demand for broadband during the coronavirus pandemic. Last Friday, FCC chairman Ajit Pai launched the Keep Americans Connected Pledge, in which 69 broadband and telephone providers across the country agreed to take specific steps to help people stay connected for the next 60 days.

The FCC is essentially helping Americans to work from home, learn at home and connect remotely to health care professionals during this hour of crisis. The spectrum that T-Mobile will use was held either in FCC inventory or by other licensees that have agreed to T-Mobile’s temporary use. T-Mobile requested the FCC to make it easier for Americans to participate in telehealth, distance learning and telework.

The Bellevue, WA-based wireless carrier continues to take steps to ensure that everyone can remain connected while practicing social distancing. It is also expanding roaming access for Sprint’s S customers to use the T-Mobile network. With roaming access, thousands of locations, schools and families connected to Sprint’s network will have expanded coverage. This temporary authority will help T-Mobile to better serve customers who are making adjustments to their daily lives to minimize in-person interactions and slow the spread of COVID-19.

In addition to removing smartphone data caps for all customers, adding more hotspot data, free calling to severely impacted countries, T-Mobile plans to expand capacity for customers with compatible devices. It has Network Operations Centers that operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week to monitor network traffic. This includes calls to 911 and a technician workforce that can quickly respond to any issues.

T-Mobile has been investing in building its nationwide 4G LTE network, which covers more than 327 million Americans. It continues to deploy 600 MHz spectrum, which covers 248 million people, and is live in almost 8,900 cities and towns across 49 states and Puerto Rico. In December 2019, the company launched nationwide 5G network, including prepaid 5G with Metro by T-Mobile.

The company launched two new 600 MHz 5G capable superphones, the OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren and the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ 5G. T-Mobile anticipates offering an industry-leading smartphone portfolio built to work on nationwide 5G in 2020. With the New T-Mobile, it will be able to combine this foundational layer of 5G with Sprint’s 2.5 GHz mid-band spectrum.

T-Mobile has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 18%. The company topped earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, the beat being 19.5%, on average. Shares of T-Mobile have gained 6.5% against 5.8% decline recorded by the industry in the past six months.

T-Mobile currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

A couple of better-ranked stocks in the broader industry are Motorola Solutions, Inc. MSI and Qualcomm Incorporated QCOM, both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Motorola topped earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, the surprise being 6.6%, on average.

Qualcomm surpassed earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, the beat being 10%, on average.

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