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Where is TMobile headed?

Discussion in 'T-Mobile Forum' started by BradQue, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. BradQue

    BradQue Senior Member
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    According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, Monday, Jan 23, TMobile lost 849,000 customers in the first 3 quarters of 2011. If this trend continues, they will likely loose even more in 2012. This same article discussed the request to transfer some of AT&T's spectrum to TMobile.

    As a non-industry observer, but a TMobile customer, I feel that their primary failures are related to two areas. First, their lack of coverage in many areas outside of those with high population levels. This "picking from the low hanging fruit" approach limits their usefulness to those living in the areas they tend to serve best, but who spend much time traveling through the more sparsely populated areas of the country. As a customer, I need a phone that is at least a phone, wherever I go. I am referring to travel in populated areas on paved state secondary roads through the country side, not the wilderness where one would not reasonably expect cell service to exist, and TMobile doesn't always deliver.

    Secondly, TMobile's 4G service is inconsistent. I never know what my 4G signal is going to be at any given time, even in the same location, and, again, 4G coverage is very limited despite what their ads say. For example, today, on two Samsung phones displaying 4G coverage, download speeds register under 0.6 mbps and, strangely, upload speeds at 1.2 mbps. This seems to be a bit reversed, as far as down vs. up is concerned and the 0.6 mpbs, which is consistent with other tests I've run (0.52 - 1.2 mbps), doesn't sound like 4G to me. Other areas within my location produce similar results using Speedtest.net, an accepted testing website. I live in the Northern Virginia/DC Metro area where one would expect service to be at it's best or near best.

    Interestingly, once I called TMobile and discussed the speed problem and the CSR "changed my tower", greatly enhancing my speed (to about 4 mbps) but shortly thereafter, things returned to where they are now. This confirms to me that TMobile service is, at best, inconsistent and, at worse, discretionary as to who gets the faster service and when..

    Anyway, don't take this as a rant, just constructive criticism. I am locked into TMobile for another 14 months and therefore hope their service improves. If it does, I have no reason to switch. If it doesn't, I suppose that, like many others before me, I will have to look elsewhere.

    Perhaps, someone from TMobile reads these posts and will take some of my comments to heart while they have time to strengthen their service and therefore their customer base. TMobile's big draw is still their pricing. Couple this with strong service and they will come out a winner.

    Brad
     
  2. ComicalMoodyDan

    ComicalMoodyDan Gold Senior Member
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    Just a little input from me as a T-Mobile customer as well. I have to say on the coverage end I've been fine but I do stick to the city and interstates of major areas but really T-Mobile caters to the more urbanites and I think their marketing is fairly clear in that and T-Mobile seems to be honest on where they do and don't provide service.

    I'm a happy T-Mobile customer but on that note I do see a couple of areas where they can improve. One is on the data side while I'm not in a major area I'm in a mid sized market and while voice coverage is fine here and my 3G speeds where I get it is fine. However strangely I do only get 2G coverage in some decent sized spots including Bristol, VA/TN which is odd to me as AT&T has some HSPA+ coverage in the city and Verizon covers it with LTE. Yet T-Mobile still has only EDGE coverage right in the city. I however very rarely go to Bristol and my voice coverage is fine in the city and I can live with EDGE speeds when I'm rarely there I just find it odd though as Verizon has 4G in that market, Sprint has 3G and AT&T has 3G with some enhanced 3G coverage in the area. Data is very important these days to a customer, even the perception of it and where T-Mobile has 4G and even 3G the speed reports are pretty good only behind Verizon's LTE network. The problem is though as you stated T-Mobile's 3G/4G has coverage gaps where customers fall back to the slower EDGE network. While not an issue for me as I'm mostly in a 3G area with good network coverage and speeds, if I did spend more time in EDGE areas I could see it as being a possible issue.

    My second point is customer service, I've only had to call customer service once though since I signed back up for T-Mobile but I used them in the past and had bad customer service experiences with them. Having signed back up porting from Sprint I've only contacted them once just to port my number and honestly such a simple thing wasn't as painless as it should have been. I was transferred twice and finally got a hold of somebody to do a simple port and it's obvious my call was outsourced and the rep had a hard time understanding me as I did with them as well. Now to be fair I'm on T-Mobile Monthly 4G plan and I know their prepaid service is handled differently but I've been under contract with T-Mobile as well and had poor customer service so this makes me think its a general problem with them.

    Bottom line all carriers have problems, each one I've had really has something that needs to be worked on. I'm happy with T-Mobile but really the company needs to work on its Data Coverage and customer service needs to be improved.
     
  3. Yugopro

    Yugopro Senior Member
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    T-Mo is going to get more 1700 spectrum in the DC area, don't know if this affects you, as a result of the AT&T breakup. This article has a map, How AT&T's Spectrum Transfer Will Help T-Mobile Customers | News & Opinion | PCMag.com

    Part of the breakup settlement has 3G roaming rights on the AT&T network. I would think that would be access to the UMTS 850/1900 network.

    I do not know when all of this is going to happen, but when it does, I wonder if an unlocked iphone with a T-Mo SIM will be fully functional.
     
  4. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    Wirelessly posted (SAMSUNG-SGH-T139/T139UVJC1 NetFront/3.4 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1)

    We should know more on February 23, when Deutsche Telekom announces the fourth quarter figures.
     
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  5. RadioRaiders

    RadioRaiders RF Black-Belt
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    I'm hearing rumors AT&T and T-Mobile might still find a way to work together. Just because AT&T was forbidden to outright swallow T-Mobile, doesn't mean that they still can't keep their separate brands alive, but make some network-side site-sharing or roaming deals to help each other out. They do use the same 2G and 3G technologies, just different freqs in some places, but that's nothing a good multi-band phone couldn't take care of. Just because the AT&T-mobile marriage was forbidden doesn't mean they still can't "shack-up" with each other ;)
     
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  6. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    Rumors are just that, rumors...

    The roaming agreement between the two that was included in the breakup package, is going to be it.
     
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  7. BradQue

    BradQue Senior Member
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    Thanks for all the comments folks. I guess we will see what happens.
     
  8. Yugopro

    Yugopro Senior Member
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    #8 Yugopro, Feb 23, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2012
    2 people like this.
  9. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    I had been entertaining the idea of porting my number back to T-Mobile, but from the information I read today and also from DT's annual report, I could not tell if they are making these investments to strengthen the business for another possible sale, or if DT really is serious about retaining the U.S. operation.

    :headscrat
     
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  10. JFB

    JFB Gold Senior Member
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    This is the text of the T-Mobile press release today about their strategy.
    Yugopro posted the link a above.

     
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  11. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    They announced at the annual stockholders meeting last week, that an outright sale of T-Mobile USA is unlikely. They seem to be open to a merger of some kind where DT would continue to hold the controlling interest. But one of their executives spoke a week or two before this meeting and said that T-Mobile USA didn't have to merge with anyone.
     
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    #11 EdwardP, May 27, 2012
    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  12. RadioRaiders

    RadioRaiders RF Black-Belt
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    What frequency does T-Mobile USA plan to launch LTE on? They really need to get on a lower freq band like 700 or 850Mhz. The fact that they have only 1900 for 2G and 1700 for 3G is hurting them, because they can't provide the wider coverage that the lower freqs can give. Even Sprint is now freeing up the 850 band iDen is used on to launch their LTE on (WiMAX on 2600 was a bad idea from the start for them).
     
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  13. Yugopro

    Yugopro Senior Member
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    Tmonews has a story about T-Mobile testing the iphone on their network in San Francisco.
    The refarmed 1900 at work.
     
  14. Yugopro

    Yugopro Senior Member
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    The Verizon deal and 1700 AWS.

    If I have my facts right T-Mo is getting enough 1700 AWS to equal Verizon. They are the two big players in the 1700 deal. If you had this much spectrum in the 2g days, you would have a very strong coast to coast voice system.

    The metro merger deal seems to have been about the 1700 AWS spectrum Metro has in the West and Northeast.

    T-Mo is filling in the weak spots with the AT&T spectrum, from the merger break-up, and the Verizon purchases. Verizon is exchanging overlap and purchasing spectrum from Leap and Spectrum Co. to put together a coast to coast network in 1700. They already have the whole east of the Mississippi covered.

    The other players; Metro,Leap, AT&T, and U.S. Cellular do not have enough licenses to have coast to coast coverage.

    If Verizon is big on 1700, chipsets and phones will follow suit, the question is what service will Verizon use 1700 for? Voice or data?

    T-Mobile is headed in the right direction.

    My opinion and I please correct me if I have my facts wrong.
     
  15. Yugopro

    Yugopro Senior Member
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    The Metro deal is going to give them 1900 and 1700, perfect fit.
     

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