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T-Mobile talks LTE coverage growth

Posted by wicked December - 17 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

t-mobile_logo_magenta

Earlier today T-Mobile launched Data Stash at their Un-Carrier 8 event and briefly touched on some of the improvements they have made to their data network during the past year. As a follow-up to that presentation, T-Mobile’s Chief Technology Officer Neville Ray took to the company’s official blog to share some additional details about how the carrier grew during 2014 and what to look forward to in 2015.

Neville notes that is was only a year ago that T-Mobile was trailing Verizon and AT&T in LTE network speed. The companies engineers were challenged to change that and to expand T-Mobile’s coverage during 2014. The target for T-Mobile was coverage that blanketed 250 million people in the U.S. and with a reach of 260 million today, the goal was achieved.

In addition to the newly extended reach of the LTE network, T-Mobile has optimized the network so it routinely tests faster than competitors. The carrier also began working on their Wideband LTE technology to speed things up even beyond traditional 4G LTE speeds. That service now covers 121 metro areas, including the recently lit up New York metro area. T-Mobile also made use of 700 MHz spectrum acquired last spring to launch low-band LTE in Cleveland, Colorado Springs, Minneapolis, and Washington, D.C.

Ray says that during 2015, T-Mobile’s LTE coverage should reach 280 million people by mid-year and 300 million by the end of the year. The company is also working with device manufacturers to ensure all new devices added to the portfolio during 2015 are Band-12 capable so they can tap into the expanding low-band LTE coverage.

In addition to improvements to the network coverage and speed, T-Mobile also introduced some new features to help customers. The company’s Voice over LTE (VoLTE) service, Wi-Fi calling and in-flight texting were launched during 2014.

Ray notes that T-Mobile customers use an average of 3.5 GB of data per month, far surpassing other carriers. He says this is a sign of strength for the carrier as customers make use of the services available to them.

Anyone out there thinking about making the switch to T-Mobile during 2015?

source: T-Mobile

Come comment on this article: T-Mobile talks LTE coverage growth

T-Mobile Uncarrier 8: Rollover Data Edition

Posted by wicked December - 16 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

tmobile_uncarrier8_picture1

T-Mobile’s 8th installment of its Uncarrier strategy is bringing an old concept back but with a twist. Harkening back to days of old with “rollover minutes,” T-Mobile CEO John Legere announced that T-Mobile is introducing rollover unused 4G LTE data. There’s a catch, sadly, as this only applies to customers who purchase additional data for their Simple Choice plan each month.

The initiative is being called Data Stash. If you are one of those customers who purchases data to be added to your existing Simple Choice plan, rejoice as not only will your unused megabytes rollover each month, but Legere is going to gift you 10GB of data free to start you off in January. This rollover data must be used within 12 months.

Data Stash’s announcement was accompanied with news from Legere that T-Mobile now covers 260 million Americans from coast to coast. Additionally, as was discussed on Talk Android previously with regard to New York City, T-Mobile now reaches 121 cities across the US with its Wideband LTE. This service allows customers to gain up to 50% boost in LTE speeds.

tmobile_uncarrier8_picture2

Lastly, T-Mobile discussed its newly acquired 700MHz spectrum and its deployment in Cleveland, Colorado Springs, Minneapolis and Washington D.C. This spectrum will greatly increase a customer’s coverage inside buildings and will allow towers to significantly expand their reach out from these cities.

As I mentioned in the beginning, Data Stash will only apply to customers who purchase additional data for their Simple Choice plans. Furthermore, this must be at least 3GB or more for smartphones and 1GB or more for tablets.

Source: T-Mobile

 

Come comment on this article: T-Mobile Uncarrier 8: Rollover Data Edition

T-Mobile Announces Rollover 4G LTE Data for Uncarrier 8.0

Posted by Kellex December - 16 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

T-Mobile unwrapped Uncarrier 8.0 this morning with the announcement that they will let customers rollover their high-speed 4G LTE data from one month to the next. They are calling it Data Stash, but it’s really just rollover for data. The idea is that you might only use 2GB of your 3GB plan this month, so you should get to keep that extra unused 1GB and use it in the next month. Get it? It’s rolling over to the next month. Well, in T-Mobile’s case, they are allowing you to “stash” it and then use it next month. 

So here is the deal. Starting in January of 2015, Data Stash (data rollover) will be automatically available to new and existing customers who are signed up for a Simple Choice plan of either 3GB or 5GB (also, tablet plans with 1GB or more). To kick start Data Stash, T-Mobile is also banking all customers on these plans with an extra free 10GB of data.

Each month, as you use up the data that you pay for in your plan (the 3GB or 5GB), you will then be kicked over to your Data Stash, assuming you have some left, so that you can continue to use high-speed data. Keep in mind that even though the Data Stash kicks off in January, because T-Mobile has given you 10GB of free Stash, you won’t start banking any extra data until you use up that initial 10GB.

Data in your Data Stash is good for up to a full year.

Here is the fine print from T-Mobile’s website that talks about not banking until your free 10GB is used:

* Data Stash: On-network data from past 12 months carries over to next billing cycle for as long as you maintain qualifying postpaid service. Free 200MB Mobile Internet data and roaming allotments do not carry over. Not combinable with Match Your Data offer; other promotional offers and discounts may also be excluded. Data does not begin carrying over until after free 10GB runs out. Free 10GB: Limited time offer; subject to change. Once per customer. Qualifying service required. Data available beg. 1st full Jan bill cycle; available until 12/31/15. Unused data has no cash value.

All make sense? The basics are this – if you have a 3GB or 5GB Simple Choice plan, you will start banking unused data come January 2015 that can be used in the next month, but only after you use up an initial 10GB Data Stash that T-Mobile is providing you.

Via:  T-Mobile

T-Mobile Announces Rollover 4G LTE Data for Uncarrier 8.0 is a post from: Droid Life

Nexus 9 LTE Now Available From Google Play Too

Posted by Kellex December - 12 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

This morning, T-Mobile announced that it was the first carrier to begin selling the Nexus 9 LTE for Google’s suggested price of $599. While they may still have the exclusivity on carrier availability, Google has gone ahead and started selling the LTE model through Google Play as well.

For $599, you can grab the LTE-ready Nexus 9 with 32GB of storage. It ships by December 19. 

Play Link

Nexus 9 LTE Now Available From Google Play Too is a post from: Droid Life

Nexus 9 With LTE Now Available From T-Mobile (Updated)

Posted by Kellex December - 12 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

The carrier-ready version of this year’s Nexus tablet, the Nexus 9 LTE, is now available at T-Mobile. Priced at $599.76 if you buy it outright ($24.99 for 24 months with a payment plan), you are getting everything in the WiFi model that we reviewed a few weeks back, only now you have the opportunity to attach it to a carrier to gobble up data when on the go. 

As a recap, the Nexus 9 runs Android 5.0 “Lollipop” and sports an NVIDIA Tegra K1 64-bit processor, 2GB RAM, 8.9-inch 4:3 display (2048×1536), 8MP rear camera, and a 6,700mAh battery. It’s made of soft touch plastic that will remind you of the Nexus 5, but then classes it up with a metal banding around the outside of its body. Again, the difference between the WiFi and LTE model is that LTE chip for data connectivity.

So what networks does it work on? Well, a few, though it’s not as network-friendly as the Nexus 6 or last year’s Nexus 7. Both Google Play and a press site dedicated to this year’s Nexus line-up failed to mention supported networks, but HTC was kind enough to put them up for public consumption on their site. It looks like you should have no problem connecting to HSPA networks of AT&T or T-Mobile. The device also supports T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon’s band 4 LTE. Unfortunately, AT&T’s main LTE band of 17 and Verizon’s main band of 13 are not supported. That’s too bad really, because your choices of connectivity with the Nexus 9 are now extremely limited.

Here is the full list taken from HTC’s site:

  • 2G/2.5G – GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • 3G – WCDMA: 850/900/AWS/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • 4G – LTE: Bands 1,2,3,4,5,7,8,20

Interested? To hear our final thoughts, be sure to read our Nexus 9 review.

Nexus 9 LTE Link

Update:  You can buy the Nexus 9 LTE from Google Play now too.

Via:  T-Mobile

Nexus 9 With LTE Now Available From T-Mobile (Updated) is a post from: Droid Life

T-Mobile launches a Simple Choice family plan unlimited everything for $100

Posted by wicked December - 10 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

TMobile Unlimited Family 4G 2 lines

T-Mobile has long pushed to be the best carrier around. In terms of bang-for-the-buck services, T-Mobile is hard to beat, with their un-carrier approach netting users unlimited data for about as low a cost as you’ll find in the U.S. today.

While T-Mobile has been great for individual lines, there has been one major omission to their unlimited 4G lineup, a family plan. That ends today! Starting December 10th, T-Mobile now offers an unlimited everything family plan with 4G LTE data.

Starting at $100/month for two lines, enjoy 10GB of data at 4G LTE speeds (drops to 3G/2G after that.) Additional lines will tack on another $40/month each, up to 10 lines total.

Overage fees

T-Mobile wants you to know that they do not charge overage fees on their unlimited packages. Their press release on the new family plan dedicates a major portion to this fact, revealing some staggering information. According to T-Mobile, so far for 2014, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon have collected more than $1.5 billion in overage fees from consumers. President and CEO John Legere then continues with the jabs, mentioning that AT&T is the largest offender for overage fees.

TMobile Carrier Family plans

Not to confuse things, but T-Mobile is also bringing back their 4 lines for $100 deal, With 2.5GB each line, 10GB total 4G data. This deal actually has an end date to it – in 2016 your lines will drop to 1GB each.

The new family plan is available now, but is only accepting signups for a limited time. Hurry and lock in your savings at the T-Mobile website if this deal looks good to you, and you are willing to jump on board T-Mobile’s Simple Choice system.

What do you think, is unlimited everything with 10GB of 4G LTE shared between two lines worth it for $100/month?

3G is dead (dying), long live LTE for Verizon?

Posted by wicked December - 4 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

They said it back in 2011, but now it seems like the start of the slow (and we mean slow) death of 3G is upon us, at least as far as Verizon is concerned. It seems that the carrier has been cannibalizing its old CDMA EV-DO systems to make way for a third distinct LTE network, after launching the first two back in 2010.

Verizon spokeswoman Debra Lewis more or less confirmed that they are testing LTE on previously inactive PCS bands (as noticed by Gigaom’s resident “network spotter” Milan Milanovic) but said they cannot specify yet which locations are testing them. She also did not indicate a specific date as to a possible commercial launch. But way back in 2011, CTO Tony Melone already indicated that they will eventually shut down 3G to make way for 4G.

However, that future is still a long way off, since 41% of the devices on Verizon are still running on 2G and 3G. While 80% of their traffic is actually on LTE already, you cannot ignore the fact that 2G is still their primary voice network. So it will still take some time before they can actually make do without EV-DO systems.

But Verizon is definitely moving into that direction, as they will eventually shifting their voice traffic into the voice-over-LTE service (VoLTE), which they started offering earlier this year. A few weeks ago, they also announced that by 2015, they will be offering VoLTE interoperability with AT&T, which will be the first of its kind among the US carriers. This is part of Verizon’s goal to have a single network technology for all its voice and data services.

VIA: Gigaom

Verizon begins preparing switch from 3G to LTE networks

Posted by wicked December - 4 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

cell tower antenna Thristian

Verizon recently began testing LTE over spectrum that was previously used for 3G coverage, as it’s beginning preparations for the permanent switch from 3G to LTE networks.

Verizon’s actions first came to light when Howard Forums user Milan Milanovic noticed (via his trusty spectrum analyzer) that the 3G signal that was normally present in an area of Manhattan had simply vanished, only to be replaced weeks laterby an LTE signal. GigaOm’s Kevin Fitchard reached out to to Verizon spokeswoman Debra Lewis, who confirmed that the testing of LTE on the PCS band has begun, but declined to get into details of when the commercial LTE rollout would begin.

Although active testing has been confirmed, we shouldn’t assume that the switch is something that will happen overnight. Around 80% of Verizon’s mobile data currently comes over LTE, but there are still a good 40 million devices on the network that lack an LTE radio to make use of it. This means that 3G (and even 2G) will have to remain available at some level, although that level will most certainly be severely reduced.

Verizon plans to begin shipping LTE-only capable handsets in 2016, giving them a little over a year to expand their ever growing LTE network. Considering that, the current LTE testing they are performing, and the 3G scalebacks in some areas of the country, and it would appear that Verizon is very serious about making 3G a thing of the past.

Verizon is Already Killing Some of Its 3G Network for More LTE Action

Posted by Kellex December - 3 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

According to a report out of Gigaom, Verizon has already begun shutting down portions of its 3G CDMA network in Manhattan so that it can be converted over to LTE (or at least begin testing it). A contributor to the site (who just so happens to track spectrum with an analyzer on the regular), noticed that Big Red has been toying with its older network for the last month; turning it both off and back on again at select cell sites. Only this week, when it came back on, it was producing an LTE signal on the PCS 1900MHz band instead of CDMA. 

Verizon PR has confirmed that it is indeed testing LTE on its PCS band, but would not go into specific details on locations or timing of a launch. Verizon previously announced that it would start repurposing its 3G network for LTE in 2015. Since we are close to 2015 and Verizon almost always seems to be ahead of schedule in terms of LTE rollouts, we shouldn’t exactly be surprised at this. Still, this is great news for those continuing to see Verizon’s network struggle under its current customer load. Help is on the way!

Gigaom’s report mentioned that the speeds being seen are very low, so Verizon is more than likely in the very early stages of testing.

At some point, Verizon will likely bring over both its 3G and 2G networks to LTE, but it won’t be for years. With the recent launch of VoLTE, we are at least moving in that direction.

Via:  Gigaom

Verizon is Already Killing Some of Its 3G Network for More LTE Action is a post from: Droid Life

Get LTE up and running on your Nexus 4, even on Lollipop

Posted by wicked November - 26 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

If there’s one thing most consumers probably didn’t know about the Google Nexus 4 (manufactured by LG) is that it was initially intended to have LTE connectivity. But since Google was unable to get regulatory approval for LTE on the Nexus 4, they locked up the feature via an update on the radio firmware of the device.

Fortunately for the Android world, there are places and groups of people like the XDA developers forum where injustices like this are not allowed to stand. If the Nexus 4 was designed with 4G data capability, then trust that people (with lots of time on their hands) will move heaven and earth to give the device that capability back.

This started with a tweak of the radio firmware back to version 0.33 – the last one that had the LTE enabled – and making it available for Nexus 4 users, done by XDA member “morrislee”. Lately though, the Nexus 4 received an update to Android 5.0 and – you guessed it – LTE was still disabled. This again was remedied by XDA member “beerbaronstatic”, who created a hybrid firmware good for Lollipop but with the LTE enabled. Pretty nifty work right there.

4G-LTE_1

If you are still on Android 4.x and you are interested to get LTE back on your Nexus 4, check out the official thread at XDA here. If you are on Android Lollipop and want LTE goodness, check out this thread here. Please remember that you will be dealing with flashable images and custom firmware. Please make sure that you back your phone up before attempting to install any of these tweaks.

SOURCE: XDA

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