When Dish Network agreed to become the replacement for Sprint as the nation's "fourth nationwide facilities-based network competitor" last year, we told you that Dish would have to find a partner to help it build its 5G network. Among the names we mentioned were Amazon, Apple and Google. Just the other day, Dish apparently decided to choose Amazon's cloud business to help run parts of its 5G network.
Bloomberg says that Dish will reportedly kick off its 5G operations in Las Vegas some time during the third quarter of this year using Amazon Web Services (AWS). Of course, eventually Dish will be offering its 5G network nationwide and based on a deal it made with the FCC which allowed T-Mobile to merge with Sprint, Dish must cover 70% of the country with 5G by June 2023 or pay the regulatory agency $2.2 billion.
With the fourth largest holdings of wireless spectrum in the states (albeit with very little of it currently in use), Dish will be able to scale its network capacity up or down based on demand by using Amazon's cloud-native network. Dish will also be able to scale up from providing consumers with the ability to handle simple text messages to delivering heavy duty processing for business customers. Marc Rouanne, Dish’s chief network officer, said, "We definitely share the same vision with AWS."
Rouanne added that, "A cloud partner like Amazon a gives us a low starting cost. We will connect devices in a very cost-effective manner. This will make a big difference in the market."
AWS will be the core of Dish's 5G network and any mobile traffic picked up by an antenna tower will immediately be connected to the AWS cloud. Meanwhile, under the terms of the $5 billion deal with T-Mobile/Sprint, Dish received 7,500 Boost Mobile retail locations and 14MHz of Sprint's 800MHz low-band spectrum. It also signed an MVNO deal with T-Mobile that will allow Dish to offer T-Mobile sourced service to Dish customers as the carrier seeks to build out its own standalone 5G network.