I got an unsubsidized phone and got the 5 GB data, unlimited text and 100 min for $30 prepaid plan.
Pros: Lot of data for a good price, a few voice minutes if VoIP does not work. No contract and unlimited text if you use that. VoIP over wifi work great
Cons: Data speed indoors is not good the UMTS 1700/2100 MHZ does not penetrate walls well. The Data speed is uneven so VoIP does not always work well. I have Google voice as the main number so with no contract I can switch to straighttalk or other MVNO.
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If you're having reception problems, that's an important detail..
I find I get more signal from Exhibit II 4g if I use in landscape mode and keep my hands clear of bottom of the phone(mic). Anything between the tower and phone with lots of water will reduce the signal levels since the freqs aren't all that far from a microwave(2.45ghz)..
The Exhibit II 4G does not get the more widely available 3G and 4G isn't available anywhere except near T-Mobile stores and they tend to be at shopping malls so if you go by a mall you should get good service but not so much anywhere else. Oddly 3G isn't available at the same places that 4G is. One day I drove around with a 3G phone to check the coverage and it was best near libraries, government building and population centers, everywhere you don't find shopping malls or T-Mobile stores. Too bad the $30 plan doesn't come with a better phone that gets both 3G and 4G. The antenna is in the bottom so it actually works best if you hold it upside down and reach up as high as possible! I don't understand why they pair the $30 plan with a 4G phone that doesn't work most places but that's what they did.
I think it's working fine except for not gettng 3G. I've taken it to 5 T-Mobile store and they all said it was OK but they have 4G there so it always works fine unless I leave and go down the street. It works great on wi-fi though. The newly available Galaxy S 2 can get both 3G and 4G so that should fix any reception problems if they ever have any for sale. Walmart stores all show them to be out of stock. What's different about the way yours works compared to mine?
My Exhibit picks up 3G with no issues. It is hard to compare phones unless you have them at the same place. There is plenty of 4G around here which helps. I have also rooted the phone and installed a different rom. Basically I am almost never on Edge always on 3G or better.
How do you know it picks up 3G? They won't display it if they do. Did one of the ROMs give it the ability to get 3G? They can't get it on their own in stock form. I took a Samsung Vibrant 3G around Phoenix, Mesa and Scottadale to compare and where I could get a strong 3G signal on the Vibrant there was nothing but Edge on the Exhibit II. Oddly some of the T-Mobile stores where they have a strong 4G signals have no 3G service but it's generally available just about everywhere while there are hardly any 4G towers. Using the OpenSignal app I was able to see 6-7 2G and 3G towers around me but the only 4G tower was 2 miles away by the T-Mobile store and too weak to get unless I drive over there. I also have a Galaxy 2 that had Android 2.2.1 and it would get 3G or 4G if it was available but when I upgraded to Android 2.3.6 it changed the display so it always says 4G now. Since T-Mobile is running ads saying they have the largest 4G network I guess they don't want anyone to know there are hardly any 4G towers and everyone is on 3G most of the time so it always says 4G unless it's on Edge.
The Exhibit II 4G (all ROMs) will automatically switch between 3G and 4G depending on how much speed you need. This is done to save power and extend battery life.
Against a 4G tower my phone/ROM will show 3G when I do nothing and H when I used a lot of data. Stock ROM always shows 4G so there is no easy way to tell. I put a new ROM on day 1 so very little experience with stock ROM.
The phone also tries to automatically switch between 2G/Edge and WCDMA (3G/4G) and some people have reported their phones on stock ROM getting stuck on Edge. Checkout the link below, on how to force the phone in WCDMA mode, try it out and see if it helps you. »forum.xda-developers.com/showpos···unt=3219
Are you sure it's switching to 3G? I don't think you can believe the display on the screen. It seems the only way to tell is by running one of the apps like OpenSignalMaps or Network Signal Info to tell what kinds of towers are around you and which one you are connected to either 3G using UMTS or 3.5G using HSPA+. My phone has never got 3G and it can't get 3G with the stock rom even when I'm in an area where there is a strong 3G signal and no 4G, then it only runs on Edge. Which rom are you using? I tried the CM9 mod but that eliminated 4G and it only runs on 3G with UMTS all the time now at a slow speed of 384Kb which is too slow to even open the Play store. CM9 has lots of other problems too like tons of bloatware slowing it down so the screen is not responsive to touch and lots of errors that keep popping up. I've tried asking on the xda-developers forum which mods or roms will give it 3G capability but all I get are a lot of obnoxious comments from the trolls on there with no useful or intelligent replies.
I used CM9 and Peach ROM. All towers around me have been upgraded to HSPA+ so I have not come across any HPSA only towers when I had time to play and test.
The CM9 does not eliminate anything but the display changes from 4G to 3G or H if HSPA+ is used. Download speed are the same as with Peach. I am almost never stuck in Edge land but it is hard to figure out all the moving parts, OpenSIgnalMaps and other tools are helpful.
I did not have error pop up in CM9. Have you tried to force your phone to WDCMA mode only to avoid Edge? You might have hardware issues but that is not easy to confirm unless you compare it to another Exhibit II 4G.