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Thread: T-Mobile in Omaha, Nebraska: coverage, dealers, number availability

  1. #1
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    T-Mobile in Omaha, Nebraska: coverage, dealers, number availability

    Well, I'm stuck over here in Omaha, Nebraska, where we're blessed with wonderful T-Mobile coverage, but not a single dealer to be found, nor any local number availability. Yet we are inundated with T-Mobile advertising, while it's nearly impossible and definitely impractical to go into service with T-Mobile. Despite all of this, I want to because I love T-Mobile, their rate plans, their phones, and GSM/GPRS.

    There's Des Moines, Iowa, a few retailers there. Coverage there. Des Moines numbers available (515), but those are long distance to Omaha.

    There's a sign up in Council Bluffs that "T-Mobile is coming to Council Bluffs," but no one can seem to find out when, or find any indirect retailers or retailers-to-be for me. There are also not any C.B. phone number blocks available yet, but C.B. is local calling to Omaha, so whenever there would be, I'd be find with a C.B. number. But who knows when that will happen!

    Then there's the whole issue of roaming... I've heard some different things, and I believe that AT&T is providing the Omaha coverage area to T-Mobile through their roaming agreement, so if I trekked all the way over to Des Moines in the middle of Iowa, they'd take a look at my billing address and never let me sign up. But if only I could just get activated, even if I had to activate with a Des Moines Friend's billing address at first, and then later changed it to my Omaha address, that would be fine... of course, then, T-Mobile isn't going to be the greatest service to use when my GPRS and SMS usage are going to be charged extra for roaming, right (I can't believe how many different answers I've gotten to this from the very company I work for... I've given up trying to get a straight one, but I thought I'd at least ask for your input ).

    So what should I do? I really want T-Mobile... and I suppose I could deal with having a Des Moines area code, until they get some local ones and I call up 611 to change it (I'll have a NW plan anyway, so I don't care). But what do I have to do in order for me to get activated either through Amazon.com or from an actual T-Mobile dealer/store over in Des Moines? Or better yet, does anyone here know of a new location coming in Council Bluffs, or an unlisted one already built here in Omaha? I know I haven't found any in my CC dealer management system, but I know there are dealers not listed in that, and I know that my DMS gives me way more dealers than t-mobile.com does, so who knows where they're hiding all these dealers...

    I really appreciate any info or replies I might get, especially from anyone who is or was in a similar situation.
    I just can't bring myself to sell my cell..


  2. #2
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    Coverage in Omaha is provided by T-Mobile. I have driven through many times and saw both ATT and T-Mobile as the available networks.

    If you activate through a des moines address with a des moines number roaming would not be an issue.
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    Originally posted by dgordo
    Coverage in Omaha is provided by T-Mobile. I have driven through many times and saw both ATT and T-Mobile as the available networks.

    If you activate through a des moines address with a des moines number roaming would not be an issue.
    Really! That's wonderful news. If T-Mobile provides the coverage here, though, do you think they would mind if I used my actual home address? What about an Omaha P.O. Box? What if I used one or the other first, and it didn't work, do you think the dealer would be interested in having me as a T-Mobile customer enough as to try it again with an address that clearly isn't mine? Or what kind of a lie should I spin so he thinks that it is?

    I can't believe there are no other Nebraskans or western Iowans around here, or at least someone who's struggled to get T-Mobile service that's plentiful in a nearby area but not in their own area. Any advice would help... after all, I'm not trying to take advantage of T-Mobile or anything, I just want to be able to have a great phone and great service instead of investing my money and time into another company (i.e. inferior ), so don't get the wrong idea.

    Oh, and does anyone have a Des Moines address they'd let me activate through? I'd change it immediately so you wouldn't get my bill or anything like that... please please please? PM me if you're willing, we can talk.

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    Originally posted by Brad at CC
    Really! That's wonderful news. If T-Mobile provides the coverage here, though, do you think they would mind if I used my actual home address? What about an Omaha P.O. Box? What if I used one or the other first, and it didn't work, do you think the dealer would be interested in having me as a T-Mobile customer enough as to try it again with an address that clearly isn't mine? Or what kind of a lie should I spin so he thinks that it is?

    I can't believe there are no other Nebraskans or western Iowans around here, or at least someone who's struggled to get T-Mobile service that's plentiful in a nearby area but not in their own area. Any advice would help... after all, I'm not trying to take advantage of T-Mobile or anything, I just want to be able to have a great phone and great service instead of investing my money and time into another company (i.e. inferior ), so don't get the wrong idea.

    Oh, and does anyone have a Des Moines address they'd let me activate through? I'd change it immediately so you wouldn't get my bill or anything like that... please please please? PM me if you're willing, we can talk.

    I'm pretty sure that you would have to use a des moines address, not a po box from omaha.

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    You would need a Des Moines addy i'm sure. Especially with the new rules on Primary Place of Use and taxation.

    Still, you're in customer care, can't you pull some strings?

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  6. #6
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    Well, poop. I don't know what I'm going to do then, I have to find somebody in Iowa who will let me activate under their address. Anybody? Iowans? Please? I'll let you come with me to the T-Mobile store and we can hang out!! Heh.

    I'm in CC, yeah, but.. *ashamed* I work in an outsourced call center, so we don't really get any of the employee discounts or anything like that.. but even if I did, I doubt that'd help with a dealer activating me. Thanks for the input, though.

    What else could I do..

  7. #7
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    Why cant you just call 800-tmobile, activate service, get whatever number(des moines or what not) and use the phone in Omaha, it is TM network there. Sure people calling you would have to dial LD probably, unless they have free LD. Have your bill sent to your Omaha addr and set the PPU(for tax rates) to Omaha as well. You can have the bill sent where ever you want.

    To me it seems to only issue is people calling you MAY have LD charges.

    Eventually you'll get a local number, Im sure its just being held up by some political/governmental nonsense

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    Brad,

    I lived in eastern NE (worked for a major ILEC telco there) up until about a year and a half ago. T-Mobile does have a prefix set up in Omaha as of 7/31/02, it is 402-769. Earlier in the year they had 402-515, which got me a switch recording in Des Moines, but it has since been relinquished. I don't have any first-hand experience with T-Mobile in the US but from what I've heard they've had service in Omaha/Lincoln/Council Bluffs for some time... can't figure out why they still haven't started selling it. Let us know when they do!

    JK870

  9. #9
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    Well, as I posted in my "Tuesday is payday.." thread, and as I spoke about in the thread someone started called "to Brad at CC," I was able to sign up online with an address in Nebraska, I just had to initially get a Des Moines number. I had a 515-779 number. I cancelled the order, though, because of T-Mo's screwy shop online credit-check-results-make-you-pick-another-rate-plan-which-makes-you-pick-another-phone-and-when-you-select-it-the-phone-gets-ordered-with-no-confirmation thing (hehe). Plus I found a better deal at just-talk.com anyway.

    There is coverage here from T-Mobile, and they let me sign up. Numbers, though, I don't think so. The internal mobile number query system which I access on a daily basis does not have any way to select Nebraska or Omaha or anything. And there aren't any 402 area codes in Iowa's number blocks that I can ever find.. much less can I find any codes by guessing in the billing system where it actually gets changed over, for any number blocks that are local to me. How exactly does you working at another telco mean that you know that T-Mobile has a 402 number block, and how do you know it is available and not filled up or something? I am just wondering, the whole number block system with the FCC and all seems massively confusing to me, especially now with the whole number portability act. But I digress.

    I think they haven't started selling it, quite simply, because there are no dealers or official stores built yet any closer than in the middle of Iowa, the next state over... I'll definitely know as soon as they even begin the rollout, seeing as I'm part of the customer support side of the company.

    And yeah, unless I get this mysteriousl unavailable Nebraska number block 402769, I'll be long distance to people for a while.. oh well. I'm mostly gonna use the phone for talking to other mobile phones, on nationwide plans, and SMS/MMS/email, anyway, so it won't matter much.

    Thanks for all the input guys! I had forgotten to update this old thread.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by Brad at CC
    ...
    I think they haven't started selling it, quite simply, because there are no dealers or official stores built yet any closer than in the middle of Iowa, the next state over... I'll definitely know as soon as they even begin the rollout, seeing as I'm part of the customer support side of the company.
    ...
    I understand how frustrating this might be to see T-Mobile provide service there but not offer it commercially.

    I think their main impetus behind setting up limited service in Omaha was not necessarily to provide commercial service right away, instead it was mainly to fullfil the buildout requirements of part of their C-block license for the Omaha market which the FCC would have revoked had they not met the buildout requirements by the end of 2001. They obtained that part of their license to serve that market in the same deal where they got the license to serve New Orleans, LA from the defunct GSM operator Pocket Comms./DCR.
    Last edited by heybabyheybaby; 01-01-2003 at 11:19 PM.

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    When I worked at Alltel wireline, I had access to the LERG (local exchange routing guide) database with info on prefix assignment activity. However, www.nanpa.com will also give you lists of central office code activity, which is where I recently noticed that 402-769 had been assigned. It doesn't necessarily mean that T-mobile plans to use it--they gave back their previous assignment of 402-515--but I would venture to say it's a good sign.

    Realistically, though, how long could it possibly take T-mobile to put in kiosks at a couple malls--if they wanted to do so? It sure didn't take Cricket that long to get stores established. Carriers have to meet network buildout deadlines set by the FCC for each individual market where they have purchased spectrum, or they will lose it. I may be mistaken, but I think I recall that they have to cover at least 25% of the population in markets where they own spectrum, within a specified amount of time of the purchase. That appears to be exactly what T-mobile has done in Nebraska--the cell sites are on the air as agreed, but as far as I know, they are not required to sell access to them. Seems strange to me, but I suppose there are lots of possible reasons why they may not be ready to 'officially' enter that market.

    The same thing has happened with Qwest Wireless. They now have coverage in at least Scottsbluff and Grand Island, to meet the FCC buildout requirement, but they won't actually offer it. Last time I was there, I used it to call their customer service, who insisted they had no service there!
    Last edited by jk870; 01-01-2003 at 11:24 PM.

  12. #12
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    Here is the link for information regarding their Omaha C-block (15Mhz/submarket 1) license. Look where it says "buildout date". They had to meet that date or forfit 15Mhz of spectrum there.

    Note however that the C-block license requirements are that they transmit a signal that covers at least 25% of the population (the requirement is higher for A and B blocks). They are not required however to sell service in the market! In fact they can even bar the entire network but as long as they are transmitting signal that covers the said percentage of POP's (and they have to submit maps to prove this) they have fullfilled their buildout requirements. I think in this situation they decided that Omaha is an important enough market that they will actually make the service available to roamers unlike say Charlotsville, VA where they are transmitting a signal but not letting anyone (except their own internal people) use it.
    Last edited by heybabyheybaby; 01-01-2003 at 11:37 PM.

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