T-Mobile launches its 5G network nationwide, but iPhones can't use it

T-Mobile Neville Ray speaking at MWC
T-Mobile Neville Ray speaking at MWC (Image credit: T-Mobile)

What you need to know

  • T-Mobile has officially launched its 5G network nationwide.
  • The network covers 200 million people on day one.
  • A 5G capable iPhone is not expected until the fall of 2020.

Today, T-Mobile announced that is has rolled out its 5G network nationwide. The company claims that their 5G network already covers "more than 200 million people and more than 1 million square miles" in the US, with more planning to be added. The technology will reportedly be available to both T-Mobile postpaid and prepaid customers. They celebrated the launch with a new video posted to their YouTube channel:

T-Mobile's CEO John Legere, in true John Legere fashion, hyped T-Mobile's contribution to the 5G era while taking shots at its competitors:

"5G is here on a nationwide scale. This is a HUGE step towards 5G for All. While Dumb and Dumber focus on 5G for the (wealthy) few, launching in just a handful of cities — and forcing customers into their most expensive plans to get 5G — we're committed to building broad, deep nationwide 5G that people and businesses can access at no extra cost with the New T-Mobile … and today is just the start of that journey."

The release also pushes the company's plan to merge with Sprint, citing it as a strategic partner to ensure its 5G network reaches the rest of Americans. T-Mobile cites that, "if the merger with Sprint closes, the New T-Mobile will be able to build on this foundation to deliver transformational broad and deep 5G for All."

Neville Ray, T-Mobile President of Technology, claims that T-Mobile's 5G technology will outperform competitors' 5G networks today and into the future:

"The carriers have been over-hyping 5G for years now, setting expectations beyond what they can deliver. When Verizon says #5GBuiltRight, they must mean sparse, expensive and limited to outdoors only. Meanwhile, at T-Mobile, we built 5G that works for more people in more places, and this is just the start. With the New T-Mobile, we'll see 5G speeds follow the same path as LTE, increasing exponentially over time. Plus, real broad and deep 5G will unleash whole new categories of innovation that will touch almost every area of the economy. The 5G future is bright, and it starts today."

The only thing missing for Apple users who happen to be a T-Mobile customer is an iPhone that supports 5G, but that is expected to change next year. According to multiple sources, Apple is planning on launching up to four new iPhone models that support the new wireless standard next fall.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.