, T-Mobile has provided full disclosure today on exactly what it plans to do with all that juicy spectrum picked up in this summer's FCC auctions. Having been left out of the 3G race put on by its fellow national carriers, it comes as no surprise that T-Mobile has officially committed to rolling out UMTS / HSDPA on the 1700 and 2100MHz bands at a cost of some $2.1 billion. Unfortunately, the specrum is a few megahertz off from the UMTS 2100 used elsewhere, meaning existing 3G handsets designed to operate in Europe will be relegated to doing their 2.5G thing when roaming stateside; that being said, beggars can't be choosers, and we're sure T-Mobile is ecstatic to simply have somewhere
to drop some next-gen data. Perhaps understanding that the wireless customer base at large can be both fickle and impatient, the nation's fourth-largest carrier is wasting no time getting its 3G equipment set up -- the rollout begins, like, now
(they claim half of NYC's hardware is already in place) and will continue through the next several years, with compatible handsets and peripherals hitting retail sometime in mid 2007. Seeing how we're writing this very article from a 3G connection ourselves, all we can say is that it can't come a moment too soon.
[Thanks, Hrag S.]