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What is DISH Wireless?

DISH Wireless 5G graphic

DISH Wireless at its core is the future of 5G networks in America. For years, DISH Network has been a disruptor and a leader in providing television services throughout the United States. Today, DISH is taking on the future of wireless by providing consumers with the first cloud-native 5G network in America.

In doing so, DISH Wireless is providing faster speeds to cell phones across the country, but it is doing so much more than this in the process. There is a lot to unravel here and plenty of exciting avenues that DISH Wireless is already exploring. The way we communicate is set to change forever as 5G continues to expand its reach across the United States and DISH Wireless is leading the charge.

How DISH Wireless is Bringing 5G to America

It took a lot to get to this point but DISH Wireless is here and it’s going to cover America in not only 5G but in the most innovative 5G networks on the market. Over the years, DISH has spent more than $20 billion on spectrum licenses. In doing so, the leader in satellite television raised quite a few eyebrows and for years had virtually nothing to show for its spectrum. That was until the wireless market had a tremendous shift in terms of wireless carriers.

Much like its collecting of spectrum, DISH continued to push to become a player in the wireless space by purchasing Boost Mobile from Sprint. Things never quite worked out but when T-Mobile, who continued its pursuit of purchasing Sprint, was finally on the cusp of completing its acquisition, the government stepped in and blew the deal up. With Americans reliant upon only four major wireless carriers, this acquisition would put the market down to only three. Combining the fears associated with antitrust laws and the emergence of 5G, the Department of Justice (DoJ) and FCC wanted to get this right and refused the deal unless a fourth wireless carrier could step up and fill the void of Sprint.

Enter DISH Wireless.

Seeing an opportunity, DISH was able to position itself to strike a deal with T-Mobile to purchase Boost Mobile, gaining entry into the wireless industry once and for all. Paying T-Mobile a total circling the $5 billion mark, Boost Mobile became a part of the DISH family and DISH Wireless was born. DISH has proven its ability throughout history to enter industries as a disruptor and find ways to do things better and in unexpected manners. As it did before, DISH is ready to enter the wireless space and provide markets, urban and rural, with a wealth of innovative solutions for today’s world and tomorrow’s.

The deal was not without its own set of rules and regulations, however, with the government putting significant pressure on DISH Wireless to provide a viable 5G network for the American people. The main focus is that DISH Wireless is not only providing service to its new subscriber base of over 9 million with Boost Mobile, but it is also responsible for building out a nationwide 5G network that will cover 70% of the U.S. population. Originally, DISH Wireless was to complete this task before June 2023, however, due to the ongoing struggles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, these stipulations have been modified. DISH Wireless will now need to supply 75% of the population in each Partial Economic Area (PEA) by June 14, 2025. The penalty for failure to do so is a hefty fine reaching over $2 billion with other possible sanctions coming against DISH Wireless.

Despite these hurdles, DISH has not slowed down and continues to put everything into place to build its 5G network. The deadline is years away but we are already seeing DISH Wireless provide innovative ideas and functions that are boosting its 5G efforts in ways unparalleled by any other wireless carrier.

Innovation is at the Heart of DISH Wireless

America is already beginning to see wireless companies bring 5G networks to their cities, however, each has its own set of limitations as the life cycle of this wireless technology is still incredibly young. DISH Wireless is already taking the industry by storm and placing innovative ideas and practices at the forefront of its 5G network. The first cloud-native 5G network for America, O-RAN compliant, and a ton of exciting features that are going to impact the way you enjoy the Internet on your devices and beyond are all part of the framework DISH Wireless is laying before us. Let’s dive in and take a closer look at some of the innovative features DISH Wireless is bringing to its 5G network:

A Cloud-Native 5G Infrastructure: The First in America

One of the biggest innovations DISH Wireless is bringing to 5G in America is the first cloud-native 5G network in the country. A cloud-native infrastructure is key to creating a faster network and will allow DISH Wireless and its vendors to innovate more through scalability and collaboration. Several standards are required for a network to be truly cloud-native, you can learn about this revolutionary concept more here.

The Importance of Being O-RAN Compliant

Open RAN (open radio access network) allows wireless carriers more freedom and opportunity by developing networks that are capable of using a variety of software and hardware from different vendors. This inspires the same collaboration and innovation that is at the heart of everything DISH Wireless is presenting in its 5G network. The O-RAN Alliance is a collection of organizations working together to improve 5G capabilities across the entire industry and each other’s networks at the same time. DISH Wireless is proud to be a part of the O-RAN Alliance and is working to become an industry leader across many facets of 5G networks. Learn more about the future of DISH Wireless and its groundbreaking membership with the O-RAN Alliance.

A 5G Network That is Software-Based & Programmable

We are already living in a world in which we see many modern applications for software improving the things we love to use. From video game updates and patches to updates on our smartphones, using software can provide ongoing maintenance and enhancements for a fraction of the cost and in a fraction of the time. This will help DISH reduce the costs of building a physical infrastructure and speed up the build-out process. A software-based 5G network will allow DISH Wireless to also scale its efforts to provide mass improvements and reach into harder to reach markets in rural environments.

Network Slicing and a Dynamic Pricing Model is Serving Efficiency

The interest in 5G networks is diverse and widespread because these attributes are the very nature of what 5G is at its core. Much more than faster cell service, 5G is working throughout many industries and for even more applications. Dividing these applications into virtual end-to-end networks that are specialized without disrupting the main flows of service is what DISH Wireless is here to bring to you. Combined with its dynamic pricing model, network slicing will give entities better options for faster networks that are handcrafted to fit their needs.

DISH Wireless is Empowering 5G Through Automation

Technology is always evolving and in a field where the only constant is change, being capable of moving with speed to assess the needs of customers and provide solutions is imperative. DISH Wireless is using automation to assist in streamlining its processes, manage its network, and creating a smoother pathway to unleash its many 5G functions.

A More Complete 5G Network With Versatile Spectrum and Native Carrier Aggregation

There are three bands of 5G spectrum with each playing a different part in how we will be able to connect to networks: low-band, mid-band, and high-band (mmWave). Each has its pros and cons in terms of coverage area and download speeds and DISH Wireless is here to take advantage of each tier through a versatile spectrum to provide a complete 5G network for consumers. This is especially helpful in the world of fixed wireless connectivity as mid-band and mmWave connections will be capable of elevating private networks to speeds rivaling and surpassing modern broadband. Using native carrier aggregation to further widen its network’s reach, DISH Wireless will offer a coverage map unparalleled by other wireless carriers.

Scalability Gives Users a Richer 5G Experience

By creating a scalable 5G network using the features of automation, AI, and greenfield design, DISH Wireless’ 5G network will avoid building and maintenance costs, enhanced functionality in several aspects including the IoT and security, and greater network capacity further enhanced thanks to network slicing.

Providing an Open Sourced 5G Network to Fuel Future Innovations

Using open source and open interface as the framework to create its 5G network, DISH Wireless is providing an inexpensive way to provide modification and collaboration from vendors across the wireless industry. This feature provides an easy avenue for vendors to work together, flexibility in overcoming network issues, reduces costs, and helps wireless carriers send faster speeds to more customers within their network.

DISH Wireless Understands the Importance of Virtualization

The recurring theme of collaboration rings true when it comes to DISH Wireless and its relationship with virtualization. This will allow DISH and its vendors to build a 5G network with improved performance, greater security, and at a lower cost than the competition.

The overall setup that DISH Wireless is bringing customers will benefit a lot more than just one sector connecting to its 5G network. There are plenty of different applications that will continue to grow thanks to the innovative approach of DISH. Virtually any wireless communication in use is going to grow thanks to 5G and companies like DISH Wireless place themselves as the thought-leaders leading a revolution in a vital industry.

5G, Fixed Wireless, and the Future of Wireless

It may be easy to picture 5G in terms of faster downloads, clearer streaming, better cell phone use, etc., but what DISH Wireless is bringing to consumers is so much more than better quality on YouTube. 5G is ready to power a variety of different communications technologies including fixed wireless and other wireless communications including the IoT. Almost every aspect of how we communicate will be revolutionized thanks to 5G and as we see more and more of DISH Wireless’ 5G network throughout the nation, the way you look at DISH may never be the same:

  • Consider smarter cities that can work together to improve traffic, emergency services, limit accidents, provide a safer public environment, and much more.
  • Faster networks that rely on less effort for data transfer and can also empower renewable energy efforts. 5G is ready to assist in boosting renewable energy throughout the United States.
  • Surgeries that can be performed across the world. Greater training for medical professionals. Faster data transfers holding vital information for patients. DISH Wireless is bringing a 5G network that will help revolutionize healthcare.
  • Education has taken a huge digital turn for years amplified even more as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The way students learn and the resources that are available digitally continue to increase and with it so does the demand for networks that can handle this workload. DISH Wireless is helping education improve with a network that can power learning institutions and students across the country.
  • Through its endeavors in precision agriculture, DISH Wireless will bring its 5G network to farms across the country as a tool to better allocate resources, increase yield, lower costs, and reduce waste.
  • Machinery that can connect, communicate, and collaborate with minimal human interaction, if any at all. Fewer mistakes, greater efficiency, and lower costs. Businesses will receive 5G-powered fixed wireless services from DISH Wireless built to streamline their output through smart manufacturing.
  • Self-driving cars are already beginning to test their capabilities and with 5G they will be able to do much more than a trip to the grocery store. Through autonomous automobiles, we will see emerging services, safer roads, and improved logistics for companies where time is money.
  • Logistics will also improve for the retail industry. DISH Wireless is providing a 5G network that is capable of reducing errors, learning trends through AI, assessing security threats before they happen, and streamlining this industry in many additional ways.

The Team Bringing DISH Wireless to Life

Like any endeavor worth taking, to bring DISH Wireless to consumers it is going to take a team of talented, experienced leaders. The foundation of DISH Wireless is already a solid one in which it will continue to build off of. Meet some of the people working to build the standalone (SA) cloud-native nationwide 5G network ready to take the world by storm.


Stephen Bye

Executive VP, Chief Commercial Officer
  • 30 years of experience
  • Previous instrumental roles for both Cox and Sprint
  • Focusing on growing DISH Wireless in many verticals

Tom Cullen

Executive VP, Corporate Development
  • 35+ years of experience
  • Helped DISH secure over $20 billion worth of spectrum throughout the years
  • In charge of the long-term strategy of DISH Wireless

Dave Mayo

Executive VP, Network Development
  • 20 years of helping T-Mobile experience considerable growth
  • Understands 5G, team building, and the IoT
  • Is currently in charge of strategy and execution for DISH’s 5G network

Jeff McSchooler

Executive VP, Wireless Relations
  • Began working with DISH in 1995
  • Has assisted in many projects including launching Sling TV
  • Will lead the team building the physical layout of DISH’s 5G network

Marc Rouanne

Executive VP, Chief Network Officer
  • Over 20 years of wireless experience
  • Intricate role in restructuring Nokia’s Mobile Business Group
  • Is leading the charge for many of DISH Wireless' technical aspects including network architecture and 5G lab management

DISH Wireless will also be bolstered by the many workers it continues to add to its team to execute at a high level. Hiring efforts are looking to boost DISH Wireless across the board as it takes its early steps forward. These efforts will also receive support from the many partnerships and vendors DISH continues to add to its wireless division. The collaboration and interchangeability of DISH Wireless is bringing together some of the biggest and brightest experts in wireless to create a leading 5G network including Altiostar, Fujitsu, and VMware.

Follow the Journey of DISH Wireless With GoDISH

Years in the making and things are only just getting started, DISH Wireless is an exciting entry in the world of wireless with plenty left to behold. Be sure to follow along here at GoDISH as we continue to explore the innovative path DISH Wireless carves in the wireless industry.

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