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Dish 5G Rollout

DISH Network is moving ahead with their 5G rollout and they are not slowing down. With the FCC deadline, Dish has been aggressive in their tower build-out and acquisition plans. This means that property owners need to be even more vigilant when it comes to signing cell tower leases.

We all know that the cell tower and carrier companies are not in the business of paying more for a contract than is absolutely necessary. Tower companies & telecom companies take advantage of the large learning curve facing most property owners and offer a contract that weighs heavily in their own favor.

Don’t Go It Alone On A Cell Tower Lease

Property owners considering a tower lease on their property need to speak to a cell tower lease expert at Vertical Consultants before signing anything. Cell tower lease contracts are complex and they need to consider several things. Things like:

  • The True Value of the Tower Lease (don’t rely on market rents!)
  • Payment structure
  • Duration
  • Escalators
  • Shared Revenue For Future Tower Tenants
  • Land Restrictions
  • Easements
  • Local Codes
  • Tower Access
  • And many other details that will prove negative for the property owner if they sign before talking to one of our experts.

Is DISH Really a Player?

In 2020, DISH Network inserted itself into the mobile market when they picked up some of the licenses Sprint let go as a part of the merger with T-Mobile. When Sprint and T-Mobile Merged, the four biggest carriers shrank to three, leaving the space open. DISH Network, purported to be a feasible competitor, gained the fourth carrier position, leading Dish Wireless’ emergence.

DISH Network has been under pressure from the FCC to roll their 5G service out thanks to the stipulation imposed on Dish Mobile to ensure competition. The FCC required Dish to cover 20% of Americans by June 14th, 2022.

The Merger That Almost Wasn’t

The FCC almost stopped the merger of T-Mobile and Sprint because they were concerned about the lack of competition in the market. DISH Network saw this as an opportunity to become a real player in the mobile game. They acquired Boost Mobile and began to build out their own network of cell towers and started to work to meet the FCC deadlines. DISH is now in the process of acquiring more spectrum and will continue to be aggressive in their tower build-out and acquisition.

In May 2022, Dish rolled out a 5G program in Las Vegas. The service plan, offered through Project Genesis, cost $30 per month and is only available on Motorola Edge Plus phones. Future service plans will include other phones.

Deadline Met?

On June 14th, 2022, DISH Network surprised the industry by announcing on their Project Genesis website that their 5G service was live in more than 120 cities – a huge jump from the single live city the site claimed just that morning.

With the exception of Las Vegas, DISH Network didn’t make the locations of its 5G service public until the deadline. At this time, Dish’s 5G service is by invitation only. While they have disclosed 120 locations, there is no way to know how much of those cities is covered.

The following day, June 15th, Dish put out a press release claiming that the expansion exceeds the FCC requirements. Dish is required to file status reports to the FCC regarding this expansion. The first is due on July 14th, 2022.

Infrastructure Challenges

Unlike their competitors who are building on their 4G networks, Dish has had to build most of their infrastructure from scratch, and they still have a long way to go it seems. Their current 5G service is provided by combining acquisitions from over the years.

  • Sprint’s 800MHz range (acquired after the 2018 merger)
  • Midband 5G (3.45 GHz spectrum -acquired at auction, January 2022)
  • C-band 5G (acquired at auction, 2020)

Dish will also rely on some of T-Mobile’s 5G spectrum as a part of an agreement between the two. In addition, a $5 billion, 10-year contract with AT&T allows Dish to use AT&T’s network while they finish building their own infrastructure. On top of all of that, Dish has contracts with Crown Castle and American Tower, giving them access to up to 40,000 towers between the two companies.

DISH Network Corp. Chairman and co-founder Charlie Ergen admitted that they weren’t really prepared for the supply chain problems they’ve faced while trying to build their towers. They also acknowledged that they seriously underestimated how long it will take to build their own network.

Some analysts say that for Dish to be able to continue to comply with FCC requirements, they will need to build 33,000 towers and spend approximately $10 billion more by 2025. Building all of those networks will require a lot of time, money, and manpower, but also the locations to put the towers. Dish will have a lot of agents aggressively looking for ideal sites to build these towers.

Advice Is Nice But Results Are Better

Since 2012, Vertical Consultants averaged over a 300% immediate increase in rents being received by our clients. We get results by being the only full-service telecom consulting firm that can handle your telecom, real estate and negotiation questions all under one roof. No other consulting firm can say that, nor can they match our results.

If you are approached by any cell tower company or carrier, it is important to not allow them to pressure you. Speak to a cell tower lease expert at Vertical Consultants before signing anything the tower company offers. We can help you understand the true value of your tower, and all the ways a tower on your property may affect you. We have the information cell tower companies don’t want you to know, which helps us negotiate better terms on your behalf.  

The tower companies have experts on their side of the negotiation. Shouldn’t you? Contact us today for a free review of your lease or offer.