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T-Mobile: MetroPCS Migration Ahead of Schedule
Company 'Put it Into High Gear' After Deal Announcement
by Karl Bode 04:01PM Tuesday Jun 25 2013
It kind of went without saying given the recent launch of MetroPCS's BYOD program, but T-Mobile says that their migration of MetroPCS users to the T-Mobile network is well ahead of their planned schedule. It has been less than two months after the ink was dry on the deal, and the company is already speeding along with their plan to shut down the MetroPCS CDMA network, use that network for LTE deployment, then continue running MetroPCS as a prepaid brand. "The moment that NYSE bell rang on May 1, we put it into high gear and hit the gas," insists T-Mobile CEO John Legere.

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RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1

What about areas like ours?

Here in Mendocino County in NW CA, T-Mobile is pretty much all EDGE (they have a TINY bit of slow 3G up in Fort Bragg), while Metro PCS is 100% LTE. Granted, T-Mobile has more coverage, but still. Surely T-Mobile wouldn't shut down Metro's LTE network and force people over to T-Mobile 2G EDGE network, or would they? They should integrate Metro's LTE network here into their network, it would give them instant LTE in cities like Ukiah.
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KA3SGM
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Premium
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West Chester, PA
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Reviews:
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Re: What about areas like ours?

They are merging the MetroPCS LTE customer base over to one network platform.

You would sooner see T-Mobile upgrade the area to 3G/4G, but they also need to offer better incentives to get the Metro customers to give up their existing CDMA phones for HSPA+/LTE ones.

I read that they did a study, where they found over 60% of the MetroPCS customers are already using LTE phones for VoLTE and data, so they may only require a SIM card swap to move from one network to the other.
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Trigggz00

@comcast.net
Currently in FL, the dominant is Metro PCS vs T-mobile. I still haven't seen anything about t-mobile customers using metro pcs's towers so for us t-mobile customers can start using metros network to get better signal. Anyone seen anything about this?

norbert26
Premium
join:2010-08-10
Warwick, RI

What about handsets

I have friends and family on the metro side on (i believe) CDMA handsets whom will use these handsets until they stop working . Will they need to purchase new handsets ?
BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA

Re: What about handsets

Most of thier customers are lte/volte a sim card switch and firmware update is all that is needed.
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josephf

join:2009-04-26
Reviews:
·VoicePulse

Re: What about handsets

LTE is only for the data. Those phones use CDMA for voice, not GSM like the T-Mobile network. As far as Voice over LTE, to the best of my knowledge no U.S. carrier uses that yet. But even if some MetroPCS handsets support VoLTE, that would only affect the small percentage of MetroPCS with VoLTE equipment. And even so, T-Mobile's GSM network doesn't support VoLTE. So I don't see how they will be able to use MetroPCS phones for voice calls once TMO shuts down the CDMA network.
BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
Reviews:
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Re: What about handsets

the lovely thing about lte is it can use gsm as well. almost all lte phones are "global" phones. A firmware update can enable the bands.

Perfect example is the lte samsung phones, they are capable of gsm/umts/hspa/lte and some even have cdma capabilities.

BTW lte is based on gsm the apns just need to be on the sim or added to the sim by the provider for it to work

»en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LTE_(telec···ication)
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josephf

join:2009-04-26

1 edit

Re: What about handsets

So you are saying that, for example, a Verizon and Sprint Samsung Galaxy S4 CDMA/LTE phone can be enabled on any GSM network (AT&T, T-Mobile, etc.) with a firmware update or user hacking?

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

Re: What about handsets

It's a definite maybe. Depending on your carrier, it would have to be unlocked or updated as you say, US Manufacturers aren't big on fully inter-operable phones, but the S4 is about as close as it gets.
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BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
Reviews:
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yeap, they can be with out unlocking, no need to hack it.

my vzw note 2 is rooted, and i frequently take out the sim and use a tmobile sim when I am looking to roam internationally.
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josephf

join:2009-04-26
Reviews:
·VoicePulse

Re: What about handsets

said by BosstonesOwn:

yeap, they can be with out unlocking, no need to hack it.

my vzw note 2 is rooted, and i frequently take out the sim and use a tmobile sim when I am looking to roam internationally.

You can use T-Mobile for voice calls with your VZW Note 2?
elefante72

join:2010-12-03
East Amherst, NY

Re: What about handsets

It really depends on the handset. Newer handsets use unified chipsets so if the frequencies you are looking for are supported, then you are good. If you go to phonescoop and type in the model (as there may be say different Samsung S4) it will tell you what bands it supports in voice and/or data. Note voice and data are typically different frequencies, so be casreful.

If you phone does not support the data bands, then typically you will have to run over the legacy 3G networks (EDGE for GSM or worse).

Tmobile in the US uses different frequencies that the rest of the GSM providers (AT&T included), so their phones may not be compatible in or out. TMO in EMEA uses typical frequencies so an AT&T phone may run 3G just fine in EMEA using TMO. YMMV. TMO is "refarming" so that they will put LTE in the current 3G (HSPA) freq bands and shift 3G around to have better compatibility but that will be a process. So say older iphones (AT&T) will now work in HSPA (vs EDGE) in refarmed cities.

As for CDMA, outside of a few countries, it's all GSM. Canada an Mexico use typical CDMA frequencies so that is not usually an issue.

The BIG gotcha is the LTE bands supported. They are ALL over the map and until this settles down LTE in general may be limited to a subset of who you bought the phone from. VoLTE similar issue, since the LTE band needs support to run. VoLTE will be another vendor lockin play if the chipsets cant keep pace...We will see.

delusion ftl

@comcast.net

Re: What about handsets

A couple more additions/clarifications.

ATT, T-mobile, MetroPCS, Cricket all use AWS for LTE (ATT also uses 700mhz) Verizon is said to be rolling AWS LTE soon to raise capacity in their LTE signal. I think that it's safe to say that other than Sprint, AWS will be used, at least partially, by most carriers in the US.

All t-mobile areas with LTE are implemented by being refarmed, putting HSPA on the PCS frequency (1900). As more and more areas get LTE so will the 1900 HSPA signal.

There are many people using various unlocked verizon handsets with t-mobile sim cards in them.
Not as many with Sprint phones because sprint soldered the sim card on most of their LTE devices until very recently.
josephf

join:2009-04-26

Re: What about handsets

Does it work the other way? Can you use an AT&T or a T-Mobile handset on Verizon and/or Sprint -- for voice and data?

Smokey
I'd rather be skiing
Premium
join:2003-05-20
Wild West

Re: What about handsets

said by josephf:

Does it work the other way? Can you use an AT&T or a T-Mobile handset on Verizon and/or Sprint -- for voice and data?

Unlikely. Verizon currently uses LTE for data, CDMA for voice.
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KA3SGM
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West Chester, PA
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Generally speaking, NO.
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BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
if its a global phone you can use 3g data but not voice. Yet anyway.

KA3SGM
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said by delusion ftl :

Not as many with Sprint phones because sprint soldered the sim card on most of their LTE devices until very recently.

Yea, Sprint finally figured out that a SIM is delicate, they can be easily destroyed by static electricity, and they also can suddenly burn out for no apparent reason(some SIM manufacturers have had a bit of bad luck with random batches of them).

A bad replaceable SIM means just that, a bad soldered SIM means the end of the whole phone.
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BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
Voice and data. HSPA+ on my phone.
tdouglas22

join:2001-09-25
Memphis, TN

T-Mobile LTE in Memphis, TN

Over the last 2 weeks I've noticed that my data speeds have been going crazy. Last night I was sitting in my living room and I noticed that the LTE icon appeared on my phone. It didn't last long though.

This morning I was driving down the street heading east and I got the icon again. I ran a speed test and it was NIIIIIICE!! I live in the Hickory Hill area of Memphis. I figure at some point T-Mobile is gonna activate us in Memphis with LTE.