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Amazon taps T-Mobile, wireless carriers to sell private 5G to businesses

Feb. 21, 2023 Updated Tue., Feb. 21, 2023 at 4:43 p.m.

 (Jason Alden/Bloomberg)
(Jason Alden/Bloomberg)
By Scott Moritz Bloomberg’s AWS has enlisted phone companies including T-Mobile and parent Deutsche Telekom AG as partners to offer private wireless services to businesses.

AWS, which supplies companies with computing power and data storage, is seeking to sell advanced wireless networks as a replacement for Wi-Fi inside offices and work sites. Other partners include Japan’s KDDI, France’s Orange SA and Spain’s Telefonica SA.

Private networks are one of the areas where AWS is looking to extend its cloud services and increase revenue. The business delivers most of Amazon’s profit, though sales growth slowed last year.

With the spread of faster 5G wireless networks, companies can upgrade their inhouse connectivity. Wi-Fi is good for today’s uses, but has limitations, according to AWS executive Jan Hofmeyr.

“5G gives precise location and low latency,” he said, providing enough bandwidth for more advanced uses like autonomous robots in manufacturing.

Amazon announced the partnership ahead of the Mobile World Congress, an annual wireless industry showcase in Barcelona set to open later this month.

After spending billions of dollars on 5G networks, phone companies have struggled to get businesses to adopt the new technology. Only a handful of big jobs have materialized.

Verizon Communications Inc. was hired to build a private network at BlackRock’s new Hudson Yards headquarters in New York. And a year ago, at the Mobile World Congress, AT&T announced it was teaming with Microsoft’s Azure to sell private 5G networks.

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