dslreports logo
site
spacer

spacer
 
   
spc
story category
T-Mobile LTE Live in Nine Cities
Firm Sees 25 Mbps on Unloaded Network
by Karl Bode 11:02AM Monday Mar 25 2013
A new report from research firm OpenSignal found that T-Mobile LTE is currently live in nine United States cities ahead of the company's official network launch expected tomorrow. Only Kansas City and Las Vegas were specifically mentioned as launch markets, though the firm notes they've also seen significant LTE presence in Seattle, Denver, New Orleans, New York, San Diego, and the Bay Area.

Click for full size
"We've observed a respectable 25 Mbps average download speed, an 8 Mbps average upload speed and an average latency of 40ms," notes OpenSignal. The firm acknowledges that these speeds are being seen over an un-launched network and using a very small sample size.

T-Mobile's LTE network is expected to be officially launched tomorrow, alongside the company's new pricing plans, which formally signal the death of long-term contracts at the company. T-Mobile's also expected to give more details on other aspects of their "uncarrier" strategy, which include the death of handset subsidies. The company is also expected to finally offer the iPhone later this year.

T-Mobile has plenty of catching up to do with AT&T, Verizon and Sprint having healthy leads on their own LTE deployments. T-Mobile has stated they want to reach 100 million potential customers by the middle of the year.

view:
topics flat nest 
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY

Great

Seeing they already have a fast 3g (HSPA42) network it wasn't say as urgent as Verizon or Sprint w/ their EvDO networks. Sprint is sucking wind right now. They can't get LTE fast enough--their 3G network is dead.

LTE is great, but I would like to see them eat up EDGE. It is unknown (to me) if they are going to go LTE and supplant EDGE and not grow HSPA, or blanket LTE over HSPA and grow HSPA where coverage is EDGE. They HAVE to get those EDGE networks upgraded, otherwise they will remain a niche player. The fact they have Ghz networks doesn't help either.

That means there are big decisions on the next handset.

ev

@clearwire-wmx.net

Re: Great

EDGE is fine if they throw enough timeslots at it. It's the pockets of GPRShell that they need to eliminate. Chop-chop.
ssavoy
Premium
join:2007-08-16
Dallas, PA

Re: Great

No. Edge is not fine for the needs of customers today.
iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
If you throw enough time slots at it, you might as well deploy HSPA+.

jgkolt
Premium
join:2004-02-21
Avon, OH
hspa is replacing edge and they are also building out LTE. So when you roll back from LTE to HSPA it will still be speedy. Something you wont see from other carriers.
SubaruBoy

join:2013-01-09

Re: Great

said by jgkolt:

hspa is replacing edge and they are also building out LTE. So when you roll back from LTE to HSPA it will still be speedy. Something you wont see from other carriers.

Yea you will, AT&T has the largest *4G* HSPA+ network which you fall back to from LTE... The majority of T-Mobile's network is GPRS/EDGE..

Verizon won't really be too much of a concern with fallback because everywhere you would lose LTE now you would either have no service or EDGE/GPRS with T-Mobile anyways and they are filling in everything with LTE anyways.
iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Online DSL

Re: Great

Majority by land mass, maybe. But T-Mobile operates a dense network in cities, and as a result the vast majority of their sites do have H+ online.

Building for capacity (what T-Mobile/CricKet/Clearwire/MetroPCS do, and what Sprint does to a large extent...and what other carriers end up doing in cities) is a different animal than building for coverage (what Verizon has done with LTE, and what AT&T/VZW tend to do in rural areas).
en103

join:2011-05-02
You mean Verizon/Sprint/Cricket.

I don't have that issue on AT&T (American Thieves and Thugs).

Moropo
Premium
join:2002-07-28
Reviews:
·AT&T Southeast
·America Online
said by jgkolt:

hspa is replacing edge and they are also building out LTE. So when you roll back from LTE to HSPA it will still be speedy. Something you wont see from other carriers.

They are not replacing EDGE with HSPA. They are only replacing HSPA with LTE so you will still be dropping to the dreaded EDGE from LTE.
--
math PhD student (University of Miami)

tiger72
SexaT duorP
Premium
join:2001-03-28
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:1

Re: Great

said by Moropo:

said by jgkolt:

hspa is replacing edge and they are also building out LTE. So when you roll back from LTE to HSPA it will still be speedy. Something you wont see from other carriers.

They are not replacing EDGE with HSPA. They are only replacing HSPA with LTE so you will still be dropping to the dreaded EDGE from LTE.

well, they're *adding* LTE to their HSPA networks. No "replacement" at all...
--
"What makes us omniscient? Have we a record of omniscience? ...If we can't persuade nations with comparable values of the merit of our cause, we'd better reexamine our reasoning."
-United States Secretary of Defense (1961-1968) Robert S. McNamara
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
Exactly. And a lot of areas don't have coverage at all. T-Mobile is a non-story until they build their network WAY out.

cchhat01
Dr. Zoidberg

join:2001-05-01
Elmhurst, NY
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
·RCN CABLE
·Earthlink Cable ..
just like AT&T curtailed its AMPS network sometime back in the past decade, the GPRS and EDGE versions will also reach their end of life (EOL) at some point of time. It is a few years from now though.
Basically, 3G/UMTS/HSPA should then become the legacy network and LTE the current implementation. Again, this is in the future and the timelines are far out (nothing before 2015).

C
--
"Look at me, I'm Dr. Zoidberg, homeowner."

Probitas

@teksavvy.com

wondering...

Removing contracts is great, but it doesn't follow that consumers will see benefits from that. With the contract at least came the relief that your provider wasn't going to start jacking your rates whenever they felt like it. Now they can do it whenever they like with probably a minimum month notice since essentially you're on a 'contract' that renews monthy.

Remains to be seen how well consumers get treated with this new company direction.

cb14

join:2013-02-04
Miami Beach, FL
Reviews:
·T-Mobile US
·localphone.com
·callwithus
·Google Voice
·Callcentric
·AT&T U-Verse
·magicjack.com

Re: wondering...

That's a moot point. I have an ancient grandfathered plan with a highly attractive price and they never tried to raise the price. I am not aware of one case they ever did that.It would be stupid , too because the customer usually gets pissed off and switches to a different carrier
At the same time, they raised the price of some peripheral services like SMS or international roaming even for customers with contracts. .

tiger72
SexaT duorP
Premium
join:2001-03-28
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:1

1 recommendation

said by Probitas :

Removing contracts is great, but it doesn't follow that consumers will see benefits from that. With the contract at least came the relief that your provider wasn't going to start jacking your rates whenever they felt like it. Now they can do it whenever they like with probably a minimum month notice since essentially you're on a 'contract' that renews monthy.

Remains to be seen how well consumers get treated with this new company direction.

Ask Europeans who have had this form of cellular service since the 1980's...

If T-Mobile suddenly raises your rates (which, as others have pointed out, would be entirely unprecedented) you can port your line to a competitor the very next day. You benefit by having more control over your service.
--
"What makes us omniscient? Have we a record of omniscience? ...If we can't persuade nations with comparable values of the merit of our cause, we'd better reexamine our reasoning."
-United States Secretary of Defense (1961-1968) Robert S. McNamara
tanzam75

join:2012-07-19

Re: wondering...

said by tiger72:

If T-Mobile suddenly raises your rates (which, as others have pointed out, would be entirely unprecedented) you can port your line to a competitor the very next day. You benefit by having more control over your service.

And the key is that the no-contract services comes with an open-handset policy. If you do not finance a handset through T-Mobile, you can switch any time you like.

If you do finance a handset through T-Mobile, the phone financing is on a two-year plan, separately from the cellular service. In other words, after two years, you stop paying for the phone -- whereas you keep paying on a traditional contract plan.

If you don't need to switch phones every two years, then you can reap substantial savings. If you want to bring your own device to T-Mobile, then you can start saving immediately, without even having to wait two years.
HarpSupport

join:2010-07-20
Manchester, CT

GPRS/EDGE Elimination

They need to make the upgrade of GPRS/EDGE towers to at least HSPA a priority. This will take far more effort than adding LTE to towers that already have upgraded backhaul. We left T-Mobile for exactly this issue - great service in the city, but unusable smartphone service in GPRS/EDGE areas.
iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Online DSL

Re: GPRS/EDGE Elimination

Yep. This is the same reason that the rest of my immediate family don't have T-Mobile, and the reason I don't have T-Mobile for my main line. We'd probably end up paying $140 per month before taxes (five lines, one with 4.5GB of data, one with 2.5GB, the rest with 500MB), slightly less than we're paying right now split between Sprint and Ting, but for more service. But that doesn't work if you're going from LTE to GPRS in exchange for the price difference (which doesn't account for buying new T-Mobile compatible phones since I'm the only one who has one right now).

wdoa

join:2001-10-16
Spencer, MA

Still lots of GPRS/EDGE areas

T-Mobile over the last few years has been upgrading and then reupgrading very limited areas. If one travels even a mile or two outside of a major or midsize city you are likely going to find yourself on EDGE or worse GPRS. Here in Massachusetts there are some cities in the state that are still GPRS. While it's all well and good to roll out the latest and greatest first in urban areas, they can't just continue to completely ignore vast swathes of populated areas that are still using what amounts to dial up speeds on the T-Mobile network.
wkm001

join:2009-12-14

Re: Still lots of GPRS/EDGE areas

Why not? They have no mandate saying they must cover the entire US. They can cherry pick all they want. There are plenty of people that live in large cities and hardly ever leave. If you want phone service when you travel then you pay someone like Verizon a little extra each month. It would be nice to have it both ways but we aren't there yet.

The thing I'm most excited about is the new phones. The S4 is suppose to be compatible with all LTE bands. That means I can finally go from Verizon to AT&T / T-Mobile if I really want.

CaptainRR
Premium
join:2006-04-21
Blue Rock, OH

Re: Still lots of GPRS/EDGE areas

Funny they claim to have a nationwide 4g network on all there TV ads.
iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
Good luck with that. The Verizon S4 will probably have AWS LTE, so you can take it to T-Mobile after unlocking it, as will the AT&T one. However the VZW edition won't have AT&T's 700 band support, nor will the AT&T one have Verizon's 700.

DrModem
Trust Your Doctor
Premium
join:2006-10-19
USA
kudos:1
I live in area that is served by both verizon and AT&T lte and sprint 3G, but tmobile is still on 2G for the entire area. And this is not a low population area...

anonphoneuse

@comcast.net

prepaid ?

do prepaid(monthly4G) customers get access to LTE?
iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2

Re: prepaid ?

Monthly4G? Yes. Go Smart Mobile? No.

Metatron2008
Premium
join:2008-09-02
united state

What can edge do today?

Besides take phone calls, text and check email?
rebus9

join:2002-03-26
Tampa Bay
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
·Bright House

Very happy with their 4G speeds even without LTE

Even in the absence of LTE, my 4G hotspot from T-Mobile that I carry around with my laptop gives me very respectable speeds. It's not uncommon to see in the vicinity of 10/1.5 or 10/2 in good coverage areas (every bit as good, or better than my 10/1 Road Runner at home) and even in the 3/.75 to 6/1 range indoors and along the fringes. Sometimes higher.

At $25/month for 1.5 GB data (more than I ever use) they get 2 thumbs up from me.

Once LTE lands here, it'll simply be a case of good getting even better.

michieru
Premium
join:2009-07-25
Miami, FL
Reviews:
·Comcast Business..

Interesting

How fast can T-mobile play the cards they have on the table is my real concern. Let's see how fast they can deploy LTE and improve the network with the newly acquired assets from MetroPCS.

Should be interesting to follow for the rest of the year.

J G 22

@tmodns.net

KCMO early release of LTE

Click for full size
ConstantineM

join:2011-09-02
San Jose, CA

No coverage for most of I-80 and I-70 in multiple states.

Meanwhile, I drove from San Jose in the Bay Area in Northern California to Oklahoma in the midwest, through SLC and Denver. No coverage on most of I-80 outside of California and Nevada; some EDGE coverage in rural Utah that, apparently, doesn't work most of the time, even with good reception, I-80 in Wyoming is blank (only roaming through United Telephone, with no data roaming for prepaid, and only 10MB of roaming for postpaid), I-70 in Colorado and Kansas empty (roaming on VIAERO / no data roaming), and I-135 in Oklahoma is only partially covered; some of the latter areas on the trip (Kansas / Oklahoma) had native T-Mobile GSM coverage (the "G" icon on the screen), e.g. apparently they still have some 2G areas that have not even been converted to EDGE.

BTW, AT&T didn't have any coverage in Nevada or Wyoming on I-80, either, so, it's not like AT&T is any better. But I did learn that my T-Mobile SIMs can roam on AT&T's HSPA sometimes, too (only one very minor portion of the trip, for the rest, there was either no AT&T, or it was EDGE).

Any way to get GSM or UMTS data coverage on interstate road trips for the whole trip? Who need voice roaming? People need data!