Expanded relationship gives T-Mo more and speedier access to large venues, including MGM properties
T-Mobile US has struck an expanded deal with network infrastructure provider ExteNet that provides the carrier with additional access to telecom infrastructure in large venues as well as decommissioning overlapping network assets that T-Mo acquired with the purchase of the former Sprint.
The two companies said that the exclusive agreement, which took effect on October 22, includes deployment of digital wireless infrastructure in large sports, entertainment, hospitality and transportation venues; it builds upon and expands their existing relationship, in which T-Mobile US is a primary wireless carrier in ExteNet contracted venues.
Under the new agreement, ExteNet will build, operate and own the large-venue infrastructure, with T-Mobile US as the “first committed carrier” on every venue contract, which the two companies said is an “industry first in enabling the extension of 5G wireless capabilities and state-of-the-art technology to fans and guests” and will enable deployment timeframes up to two times faster than is typical.
It also enables T-Mo to take advantage of ExteNet’s deployment partnership with MGM Resorts, which includes all 25 MGM properties in the United States. In September of this year, ExteNet announced what it called “the largest in-building cellular enhancement project in the United States” with MGM, featuring an “aggressive deployment schedule” from fall 2022 to through fall 2024, with planned support for major events such as the Formula One World Championship in November 2023 and Super Bowl LVIII in February 2024. Extenet will be bringing a distributed wireless network to MGM properties covering 54 million square feet and more than 43,000 guest rooms that have more than 70 million annual visitors—including 5G service to its Las Vegas casinos.
ExteNet noted that T-Mobile US will be the first carrier to join the new wireless network that it is building for MGM.
In addition, ExteNet will work on “[rationalizing] T-Mobile’s small cell framework and [upgrading] existing infrastructure” to deliver 5G wireless service. “These enhancements, which will be done without any service interruptions, are expected to provide a superior end-user experience and a competitive advantage for T-Mobile,” the partners said in a release—and, they said (borrowing one of T-Mo’s favorite phrases) boost ExteNet’s “reputation for [an] innovative and customer-centric Un-carrier approach to venue contracting.”