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Thread: Finally dumped "Big Red" so I can "Get More"

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlp2979 View Post
    Longtime lurker on this site, very informative stuff. Today I ported my personal line from VZW to T-Mobile, and if all goes well I'll switch my work line over. Not sure I'll keep T-Mobile but I'll see how things go. My office is in downtown Chicago, and while in the loop during peak hours VZW consistently pulls 75Mb down which is LOL-worthy every time I run a speedtest. T-Mobile LTE crawls to 1-2Mb down, if I turn off LTE and use 4G it gives me about 4 Mb down. Bad pocket of the loop I was told at the store. Also live in a high-rise and have to use a VZW network extender to make calls reliably. Walked around my usual areas today after work and T-Mobile LTE averaged around 10 Mb down, saw up to 15, which is adequate for me I guess.

    Call quality on VZW is so bad (when not on VoLTE), all my friends and family have AT&T and I'm told that is why, they can never hear me the first time and they sound garbled as well- apparently CDMA/1x & WCDMA/3/4G calls don't play as nicely together. The call quality I've experienced in 1 day on T-Mobile is absolutely incredible though. Spoke with a friend who I usually can never understand, and the call was crystal clear while on 4G, not even VoLTE.

    Here's my issue. Due to my office and apartment, when I'm at home and at work I need to (mostly) rely on WiFi and WiFi calling to make calls and get useable data with T-Mobile. 4G did work tonight at home and didn't drop the call, but I did notice the signal was completely lost a couple times tonight while not on a call. WiFi calling btw is working perfectly for me at home and at my office.

    Do I keep T-Mobile for the outstanding call quality despite my very weak signal issues at home and at office? I absolutely love WiFi calling and find it to be a killer feature. I'm not a big data user, average 2-4gb per month. I actually still use my smartphone as a phone and call clarity is important to me. It doesn't feel right to me to keep T-Mobile if I have to rely on WiFi calling so often? Sorry for the long post, would love to hear from people who have switched who rely on WiFi calling most of the time like I may have to do.
    As long as the Wi-Fi Calling works fluidly as advertised then I don't think there's anything wrong with relying on it. That's what it's for, poor or weak service inside certain buildings.

  2. #32
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    One way to have the best of both worlds is to have a prepaid phone on Verizon. Their own pay by the minute and monthly plans aren't great for low usage, so I have a TracFone and so does my gf. TracFone's smartphones all run off the _native_ Verizon network.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/LG-Ultimate-...item20f3843cae

    > That would get you a pretty nice 3G Android phone with a 4.5" screen, and 1 year of service w/ 1200 minutes + 1200 text messages + 1200MB of data for $130. It's great to have for emergencies, to throw in the car, or for traveling. I absolutely love being on T-Mobile but I am not blind to the fact that their coverage is less than stellar sometimes. It works for me 95% of the time and I get unlimited everything so that's well worth it.

    TracFone also started offering 4G LTE "bring your own phone" on their service but not all the kinks are worked out so unless you absolutely want to use an LTE phone, it's easier to stick to one of their branded 3G phones. The activation process can be hit or miss and dealing with a failed activation is not for the faint of heart.

    I've been with T-Mo since 2001 and have definitely become accustomed to above average sound quality, especially now with VoLTE. I just switched two relatives over to HD Voice equipped smartphones and they told me it is MUCH clearer than their old 3G flip phones. They mostly call each other so HD Voice will be enabled for most of their calls. I do notice a dip in sound quality on my Verizon TracFone. Still plenty usable though.
    Castrol EDGE 0W-20 is my drug of choice.

    Primary: iPhone SE 2nd gen eSIM
    Secondary: TracFones: iPhone SE 2nd gen dual-SIM [AT&T] & iPhone XS [Verizon]
    Mobile Broadband: ZTE Z917 LTE hotspot (5GB for $10)

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by IsLand_BoY View Post
    TracFone also started offering 4G LTE "bring your own phone" on their service but not all the kinks are worked out so unless you absolutely want to use an LTE phone, it's easier to stick to one of their branded 3G phones. The activation process can be hit or miss and dealing with a failed activation is not for the faint of heart.
    That L41c is fine wrt value-for-money and for people not too demanding wrt their handset.

    But you are grossly exaggerating the "kinks" wrt activating a VZW LTE-capable device, especially with higher-end devices - my LG G2's and Moto X's had no issues at all, were up and running with 4G LTE data within an hour of activation, and most cost me less than $10 per month to keep on VZW's network for those times I'm away from WiFi.

    Just get the SIM+NAC (network activation code) kit here http://www.ebay.com/itm/Tracfone-Ver...item4d31806d4f or from SaveOnTracfone.com and an TF airtime card before you start the activation process.

    I like working with the chat support humans at TF, others prefer using their website's activation forms.

    Doing it this way should mean no glitches or delays.

  4. #34
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    Finally dumped "Big Red" so I can "Get More"

    I just picked up a Straight Talk hotspot model Z288L that runs on Verizon's network. I just tested it yesterday when I picked up a friend that did a 37 mile hike. It was far away from any major city. I had no T-Mobile signal and had Verizon signal most of the way. (1X, 3G, LTE) I streamed music, received phone calls and text with no issues.

    iPhone 6+ -> WiFi Calling -> hotspot -> Verizon Network

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by GusHerb94 View Post
    June 1st they're supposed to increase LTE bandwidth from 10x10 to 15x15, so you should expect some form of speed improvement around then.

    IMO as long as the wifi calling works seamlessly then I see absolutely no problem in relying on it for service. If you want you can get the free Cellspot router which has QoS for wifi calling and excellent range, or I think you can get a free network extender instead. If you pickup any kind of LTE at home then the wifi calling will hand off to that when you leave the wifi range.

    Again, IMO, since call quality is important to you and as long as wifi calling works well I see absolutely NO problem in relying on it. I was two seconds from switching to T-Mo before going to AT&T and I would've been using the wifi calling at home even though I have strong LTE signal here. I would've had to rely on the wifi at work though, which didn't bother me one bit. (I had the test drive phone)


    via the HoFo App
    Thanks, I didn't know they will soon increase the bandwidth here, tried to search for some info and got nothing. I have no need for the Cellspot router because I can't pick up solid LTE in my apartment anyway. My current router -> WiFi calling works great at home and the WiFi is strong at my office too, so WiFi calling is perfect there. It is probably me just being paranoid about switching from VZW after so long and maybe the false sense of security haha, and having to adjust to the weaker indoor coverage. I'm out of contract w/ VZW and my iPhone 6 works with T-Mobile so I can easily switch back anytime. Want to support the "good guys" though and hope T-Mobile works for me.

  6. #36
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    Thanks for the replies. The VZW hotspot idea for WiFi calling when I'm traveling sounds like a really good idea. I want to really give T-Mobile a chance because I love what they are doing. For now I plan to at least keep my work line with VZW so I could add that mobile hotspot and leave it in my car or I could just add a basic flip phone to my account for use when needed.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlp2979 View Post
    Thanks, I didn't know they will soon increase the bandwidth here, tried to search for some info and got nothing. I have no need for the Cellspot router because I can't pick up solid LTE in my apartment anyway. My current router -> WiFi calling works great at home and the WiFi is strong at my office too, so WiFi calling is perfect there. It is probably me just being paranoid about switching from VZW after so long and maybe the false sense of security haha, and having to adjust to the weaker indoor coverage. I'm out of contract w/ VZW and my iPhone 6 works with T-Mobile so I can easily switch back anytime. Want to support the "good guys" though and hope T-Mobile works for me.
    According to some insider info I heard, the June 1st date for refarming and shutting down AWS HSPA in the Chicago market has been pushed to July 1st instead of June just FYI. So it'll be a little longer then previously expected for "Wideband" LTE in Chi.



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  8. #38
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    Sounds Like T-Mobile is working good for you...

    Quote Originally Posted by jlp2979 View Post
    Longtime lurker on this site, very informative stuff. ...
    From what you posted it sounds like T-Mobile is working good for you. That's all that matters.

    A couple comments on your post:
    T-Mobile Audio quality- I have to agree. I think T-Mobile has the best audio quality of all of the carriers.

    Speeds- Mobile phones don't benefit from faster data speeds beyond a certain point. It seems lots of folks like to post speeds like 60Mb/s which exist in rare situations. The truth is that if you get 1Mb/s that's consistent, you can do email, web, use navigation, stream audio and video etc. Although admittedly as you get slow speeds, this is often an indicator of weak signal, and subsequently high error rates which can make for problematic connectivity. I simply mean sometimes if your phone says you only have 1Mb/s or less, your signal quality may be poor enough that you aren't seeing that rate effectively (or consistently).

    Where I live in Oregon, I frequently travel where T-Mobile has zero coverage. So it just depends where you are and where you travel (and expect to use your phone).

    -Dan
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    http://pages.uoregon.edu/dalbrich
    Eugene, OR -- Pacific Northwest

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by coorey View Post
    I gave up (sold) my unlimited data line on Verizon and came to T-Mobile as well. I honestly can say I enjoy the experience. The only time I'm reminded I'm not on Verizon is when I'm with a building that I get no service due to T-Mobile's signal not penetrating the structure. But the trade off is at work I lose LTE signal from all carriers and Verizon would drop down to unusable 3G while T-Mobile drops down to very usable 4G. I mean I can actually watch Sling TV and listen to Spotify radio stations which is perfect. I think my experience will only get better if Apple releases an iPhone this year with band 12 support as the two areas I frequent regularly (ATL and DFW) will take advantage of it.

    Pro's:

    Truly unlimited data
    Wifi calling and VoLTE
    Gogo inflight integration
    Unlimited international data
    Match data tablet promo for $10
    Hotspot with 5GB included

    Con's:
    Poor coverage inside certain buildings
    Rural coverage not as widespread
    Roaming almost non existent IMHO
    Pricing not as competitive as Sprint or Cricket in certain areas although value may appear better
    No longer allowing corporate discounts for private employers


    via the HoFo App
    I like the pros and cons. I have a T-Mobile but my wife has Verizon. When we traveled to Poconos mountains, she had coverage but mine didn't. Same in rocky mountains. But when we went to Caribbean, I had int'l text and data and Wi-Fi calling, but she has to pay to use it. With 20%corp discount and good price on 2yr contact devices, S6 for ex. Verizon is cheaper.
    T-Mobile speed is a lot faster in cities than V. While on a long call when traveling between two towers, tmo some times gets cut when the towers change. V stays without drop. Inside building in rural areas Verizon has good signal but I like tmo customer service.
    Bottom line: both miss some features but after 5 years, T-Mobile Will be no.1 if it keeps expanding 700 spectrum and gives corp discount.

  10. #40
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    After using the service for the past few days I may port back into Verizon. Walking around the Mag Mile area of Chicago - outdoors - I was only getting .15Mb down on LTE. As I walked further away toward my apartment it crept back up to around 10Mb down. Not acceptable to me. Clearly they have capacity issues here. Also I've noticed my battery drains quicker than it did with Verizon, probably because of the weaker signal. I am traveling up to Milwaukee tomorrow and will see what happens along the way. I'm not asking for 50Mb down, but I think in 2015 it is reasonable to demand 5-10Mb down at any given time in a huge metro area. I will just have to suffer with poor 1X CDMA call quality when not using VoLTE with Verizon if I decide to switch back. I would also consider AT&T but they still have capacity issues here as well.

  11. #41
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    Back on here to report how things are going with me at least. Had issues with the wife's iPhone picking up wifi calls from the Cellspot. Got that resolved with a setting on their end. Also had to reset my APN settings and some sort of push on T-Mo's side to get my MMS working on the Cellspot but its all good now.

    T-Mo speeds are very good on LTE, batteries last all day on both phones and I'm loving the free Rhapsody, wife likes that she got the $20 Major League Baseball app for free from having T-Mo and we are overall very happy with the switch. There have been a few times where we have run into a rural spot and had no service, don't get me wrong, but its a very short time period and NJ has blanket coverage for the most part. I've been talking to T-Mo customer service and verified online also that my area is in a full blown LTE buildout that is slated to be completed by the end of the summer so they should rival Verizon as far as coverage around here.

    And I agree with some others on here, the customer service I have experienced so far has been beyond great, everything fixed on the first phone call when I had issues, super nice reps too, one even stayed on the phone to BS for a few minutes when he found out I was into Mustangs like he was lol. If this new CEO they have for T-Mo USA keeps on keeping on like he has... I can see T-Mo catching up to VZW/ATT in 5 years, they're already powering past Sprint.

    And as far as the TV service cancelling like someone else on here mentioned... fios TV here has been meh, having trouble with freezing/skipping channels we never had with circa 2010 technology boxes on DTV... I'm getting ready to tell these asshats that they can come get their boxes, I will not be paying any ETFs and we are going back to Direct or even... gasp... Comcast... I hate Comcast but I will say that in the 3 years we had internet with them from 2011-2014 we never once had a service issue and the DTV satellite service was stellar.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
    Back on here to report how things are going with me at least. Had issues with the wife's iPhone picking up wifi calls from the Cellspot. Got that resolved with a setting on their end. Also had to reset my APN settings and some sort of push on T-Mo's side to get my MMS working on the Cellspot but its all good now.

    T-Mo speeds are very good on LTE, batteries last all day on both phones and I'm loving the free Rhapsody, wife likes that she got the $20 Major League Baseball app for free from having T-Mo and we are overall very happy with the switch. There have been a few times where we have run into a rural spot and had no service, don't get me wrong, but its a very short time period and NJ has blanket coverage for the most part. I've been talking to T-Mo customer service and verified online also that my area is in a full blown LTE buildout that is slated to be completed by the end of the summer so they should rival Verizon as far as coverage around here.

    And I agree with some others on here, the customer service I have experienced so far has been beyond great, everything fixed on the first phone call when I had issues, super nice reps too, one even stayed on the phone to BS for a few minutes when he found out I was into Mustangs like he was lol. If this new CEO they have for T-Mo USA keeps on keeping on like he has... I can see T-Mo catching up to VZW/ATT in 5 years, they're already powering past Sprint.

    And as far as the TV service cancelling like someone else on here mentioned... fios TV here has been meh, having trouble with freezing/skipping channels we never had with circa 2010 technology boxes on DTV... I'm getting ready to tell these asshats that they can come get their boxes, I will not be paying any ETFs and we are going back to Direct or even... gasp... Comcast... I hate Comcast but I will say that in the 3 years we had internet with them from 2011-2014 we never once had a service issue and the DTV satellite service was stellar.
    If you really want to stick it to them look at Dish's Sling TV unless you need additional rooms because it's a single stream only service. I cut the cord it's great.

    Sent from my XT1080 using Tapatalk

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
    Back on here to report how things are going with me at least. Had issues with the wife's iPhone picking up wifi calls from the Cellspot. Got that resolved with a setting on their end. Also had to reset my APN settings and some sort of push on T-Mo's side to get my MMS working on the Cellspot but its all good now.

    T-Mo speeds are very good on LTE, batteries last all day on both phones and I'm loving the free Rhapsody, wife likes that she got the $20 Major League Baseball app for free from having T-Mo and we are overall very happy with the switch. There have been a few times where we have run into a rural spot and had no service, don't get me wrong, but its a very short time period and NJ has blanket coverage for the most part. I've been talking to T-Mo customer service and verified online also that my area is in a full blown LTE buildout that is slated to be completed by the end of the summer so they should rival Verizon as far as coverage around here.

    And I agree with some others on here, the customer service I have experienced so far has been beyond great, everything fixed on the first phone call when I had issues, super nice reps too, one even stayed on the phone to BS for a few minutes when he found out I was into Mustangs like he was lol. If this new CEO they have for T-Mo USA keeps on keeping on like he has... I can see T-Mo catching up to VZW/ATT in 5 years, they're already powering past Sprint.

    And as far as the TV service cancelling like someone else on here mentioned... fios TV here has been meh, having trouble with freezing/skipping channels we never had with circa 2010 technology boxes on DTV... I'm getting ready to tell these asshats that they can come get their boxes, I will not be paying any ETFs and we are going back to Direct or even... gasp... Comcast... I hate Comcast but I will say that in the 3 years we had internet with them from 2011-2014 we never once had a service issue and the DTV satellite service was stellar.
    I'm very happy it's working out for you.

    It sounds you had reasonable expectations going into the switch which means you did your homework. Verizon does have more coverage nationwide (let's give them credit where credit is due) but T-Mobile is getting there. It's getting better every day! We've went from ZERO POPS of LTE coverage a couple of years ago to a projected 300 million Americans covered by years end. I can only imagine that they'd expand even closer to Verizon's LTE lead of 308 million American's covered claim in 2016 either through self build outs or new LTE roaming agreements. T-Mobile CEO John Legere knows he has to do this to be taken seriously and he's the man to make it happen.

    I've been able to convince 3 Verizon diehards in my close circle to port their lines to T-Mobile. To be honest I purposely overplayed T-Mobile's known weaknesses to them upfront because I preferred that they'd be positively surprised and they were! Even though our everyday devices are unlocked iPhones without access to T-Mobile's new Band 12, coverage is still great "overall," we get better call quality with HSPA handoffs from VoLTE, fast LTE data speeds, Unlimited Data with a lot of extras like free MLB at Bat like you said and the fairest Global Roaming packages around. Plus they get killer rates on their personal plans since they linked their T-Mobile business lines to them. All in all when the pros and cons were weighed T-Mobile came out winning. So far they are most impressed with the call quality (all of them) and 2 of them are data center engineers so they have been impressed with the WiFi calling feature because some underground data centers have zero cell coverage with any carrier.

    We're all avid hikers. If we absolutely know we're going on some road trip where only Verizon has service we'll just bust out our Verizon MiFi's which are paid for by our employer and do WiFi calling. I always have mine in my backpack fully charged just in case. The good thing is we're all in SoCal so we are looking forward to our major 700 MHz expansion and hoping that the new iPhone that comes out in the fall will be ready for it.
    Last edited by @TheRealDanny; 05-10-2015 at 02:16 AM.
    “The Internet wasn’t meant to be metered in bits and bytes, so it’s insane that wireless companies are still making you buy it this way. The rate plan is dead — it’s a fossil from a time when wireless was metered by every call or text.” John Legere 1/5/2017

  14. #44
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    Yeah I've been fine with it... problems again with the stupid cellspot today though. Going to call them and get them to resolve it... MMS for me again and "T Mobile Wifi" is not showing up on the wife's iPhone again. Either something is resetting whenever one of us restarts a phone or its on their end. I'm sure it'll get all worked out. The Wifi calling really is great tho, I had to pay for GrooveIP for years when I was flying to make phone calls in different countries over wifi and it was spotty at best and was not my own phone number. With this feature... if I start flying again I won't even have to worry about global roaming honestly although its really nice to know I'd have it in my back pocket if I needed it.

    Real funny to go to my wife's Uncle's house who lives in what I believe is the only remaining all carrier dead zone in the state and get a phone call on wifi. He has a land line for the home phone and obviously wifi and he's like "wait so you're telling me someone just called your phone over my wifi and it went right to your number and everything?". Lolz.

  15. #45
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    And the "Big Red" is still overcharging people. My Family switched after getting a $700 bill in overages and did not even include data for 4lines then we switched to MetroPCS and after that went to TMobile once we saw the benefits such as no roaming for Data/Text and 20 cents per minute in other countries. My Father and I just came back from a cruise overseas and while we were on the ship in port we called home for 20 cents per minute cheaper than the cruiseline. Mind you TMobile does not connect to the expensive Celluar At Sea.We pay $120 for 4 lines and are very happy and the tech support and customer service have been better.

    Gosh those overages we paid were worth 7 months of service. I still like to go to the Big Red Store and sit inside and overhear the problems people are having as well as this one guy yelling about overages. The man came in with a $500 in overage minutes and data. As soon as he walked out I told him come over to TMobile and say goodbye to Overages/Contracts etc. He ran over to TMobile and I told him what to ask and I saw him at TMobile with a smile on his face. He got the $100 ETF from Verizon and got a better phone and LTE service .

    Let's have a campaign to bring as many "Big Red" Customers over to TMO. LOL

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