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Thread: I'm quite impressed with T-Mobile's 4G LTE Expansion

  1. #1
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    Thumbs up I'm quite impressed with T-Mobile's 4G LTE Expansion

    Yesterday I had an opportunity to test out T-Mobile's 4G LTE coverage outside NYC while my friend and I drove to Tannersvile, PA to go skiing. I've used my phone (LG G4) for Google Maps and TuneIn Radio playing at 128 kbps, while running Sensorly mapping in the background.

    I drove via I-95 N, I-280 W, and I-80 W. From what I saw I had 4G LTE on for the entire time, while my friend on Verizon dropped to 3G a couple of times on her Galaxy S4. My maps worked fine the entire trip and my TuneIn Radio only stopped playing once for maybe less than 20 seconds or so. Interestingly, it still said 4G LTE while the music stopped playing, so I'm not sure what was up with that.

    On that note, I was very impressed with T-Mobile's high speed network expansion. The last time I went there was in 2014 and pretty much immediately after I drove out of New York city and only a little outside the more urban Jersey areas my phone would drop to EDGE and internet radio streaming was something that I could pretty much dream of even at much lower sound quality.

    With 4G LTE data working the entire way, and on top of that the data being unlimited it felt like taking my home internet with me. The hotspot was a nice addition too as it allowed my friend to use my phone's high speed data without using the expensive Verizon plan with limited GB's of data.

    The only issue that I encountered was not enough capacity at the resort itself. The place - called Camelback Mountain Resort had a ton of skiers as well as people that just went there with their families and didn't ski - just stayed at the cafeteria.

    After my friend and I were done skiing we took a break to eat and drink something and me being the cellphone-nerd figured I might as well run some speed tests and check band information and such. The tower was running band 2 LTE at 5 MHz. I've forced my phone to WCDMA, but it only found AT&T 3G, leading me to believe that this particular tower was EDGE and LTE only. I then forced my phone to EDGE and while it was able to connect - due to capacity issues there was no data or the "E" "2G" symbol showing at all.

    When I ran a speed test, I got a ping in the 170s and the download varied between 200 to 500kbps - not bad considering how crowded the area was. As for the upload it glitched when I ran it and showed 0.00 mpbs. Then, when I ran it with Sensorly it showed 2 mbps.

    My friend with Verizon wasn't even able to use data on her phone. I tried downloading speed test, but the connection was so slow that the Play Store wouldn't even launch. On both networks - calling and texting worked without a problem.

    So, to conclude - I'm quite impressed with T-Mobile's expansion thus far. My experience obviously doesn't speak for all of Pennsylvania, but in this particular area it's nice to see unlimited high speed data working. Unfortunately, at only 5 MHz, capacity was a big issue and as the day went by the data got less and less usable since more people came to the resort. At the end of the day when we were driving out, TuneIn Radio didn't work at all for maybe 2-4 miles outside the resort - although Google Maps navigation was never a problem. However, once it kicked in the app didn't stop to buffer at all the entire way back to NYC.

    It would be to nice for them to fix this capacity issue at locations such as this one, but I doubt they will do it, considering there is LTE there already, it was somewhat usable and the resort only gets traffic a few months a year - so it probably wouldn't be a good return on investment for T-Mobile.

    I'm curious to see, how the LTE expansion has been for the rest of you guys. In particular in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

  2. #2
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    They've done an excellent job here in NH. They've added 5 towers that I'm aware of, and almost all towers are now LTE.

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    If you have a PC this is the Cellmapper data of the Tower near Camelback PA. Sorry little slow to load but you can click on the red mark tower and see the three t-mobile band 4 cell units.

    http://www.cellmapper.net/map?MCC=31...e&bands=0,4,12

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    Quote Originally Posted by shilohcane View Post
    If you have a PC this is the Cellmapper data of the Tower near Camelback PA. Sorry little slow to load but you can click on the red mark tower and see the three t-mobile band 4 cell units.

    http://www.cellmapper.net/map?MCC=31...e&bands=0,4,12
    It's wrong. All B2 and B12.

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    I can drive from Atlanta all the way to West Central Alabama to my parents house and never lose LTE now. It's one site outside of Selma that for some reason is still EDGE but the two neighboring sites reach far enough I don't lose LTE. It's just weak. I even have LTE all around the middle of nowhere where my parents live. It's a lot more LTE there than what I've gotten mapped on Sensorly and more than what T-Mobile's coverage map shows.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCellphoneGuy View Post
    Yesterday I had an opportunity to test out T-Mobile's 4G LTE coverage outside NYC while my friend and I drove to Tannersvile, PA to go skiing. I've used my phone (LG G4) for Google Maps and TuneIn Radio playing at 128 kbps, while running Sensorly mapping in the background.
    ...

    I'm curious to see, how the LTE expansion has been for the rest of you guys. In particular in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
    The speed of the expansion in the existing footprint is very impressive. Right now I still think of it as a 'tourist' network: they did just enough to satisfy travelers and not enough for locals to consider them. I do disagree though about the traffic - most of the resorts, Camelback in particular are open nearly all months of the year with skiing, then the waterpark during the spring and summer months, and plenty of others have outdoor activities year-round, plus the Crossings is always open, right down the road. There is a definitely a need for coverage expansion, hopefully 2016 is the year we see it.

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    I wouldn't be on T-Mobile if they didn't expand native coverage. Where I live, T-Mobile had only ATT roaming a few months ago. Now they have 10x10 band 4 LTE and hspa. It's been similar in other areas of western IL. T-Mobile has been adding native coverage to areas that earlier only had ATT roaming.

  8. #8
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    I'm quite impressed with T-Mobile's 4G LTE Expansion

    They are missing areas during the expansion my area in bucks county still is edge only this is happening hunterdon county also towers haven't been upgraded rep at T-Mobile store showed me the in house maps of my area 2g only lol So basically they haven't completed all of the. New York and Philadelphia markets very interesting. Camelback tannersville are right of 80 that's why it's impressive go a few miles off the interstates or main roads in Monroe county it's a different story last I heard they had open up ATT roaming. Where they have upgraded to LTE and in densely populated areas it's great I'll believe it when see at my house what's interesting is why are they deploying 1900 LTE only in rural areas in nw nj no 700

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    The T-Mobile map has been Offitially updated http://www.t-mobile.com/coverage.html I'm supprised in the Expantion in Colorado, There is a new tower on Badger Mountain If T-Mobile keeps up this pace my AT&T days might be over well see.

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    Their coverage map shows huge areas of B12 coverage in areas around rural western King County, WA.

    I haven't verified it to be real yet, but I will check this week.

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    Wish they would expand near where my grandma lives. My family is on Verizon but I have a separate plan with TM and they get plenty of coverage up there but I get zilch. In their defense though, my grandma lives in a sh*t splat town in BFE.
    "Not all that glitters is gold, not all who wander are lost." ~ JR Tolkien
    "The best you can do for another is not just share your riches but prove to him his own." ~ Benjamin Disraeli

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJoe View Post
    Their coverage map shows huge areas of B12 coverage in areas around rural western King County, WA.

    I haven't verified it to be real yet, but I will check this week.
    Well, I checked it today.

    I think they updated the map with a couple of assumptions:
    1) that the towers have been upgraded, when in fact they have not
    2) that I have to be walking about in 200 ft stilts
    3) that there are no hills
    4) that there are no trees


    Other than that, great map update !
    Last edited by JohnJoe; 01-19-2016 at 01:00 PM.

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    There are a few places near where I live that show some band 12 expansions on the maps, yet there is still no band 12. I just pick up band 4 up until the signal cuts out, then maybe 4G (3G) before no-service. So I wonder if they are jumping the gun on the coverage maps before actually launching some band 12 areas. This is in mid Sonoma County within the former channel 51 exclusion zone. I still hope to see band 12 since I work out there in the country. I could use some band 12 penetration in my condo as well.

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    It shows some new Band 12 in northwest Kansas, as well as other new coverage east of there.

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    According to their maps my Area is fully lit up with LTE even rural areas, still sitting on 2g right in the middle of a normal town where it says I should have LTE everywhere. I agree with the tourist network description because the highways seem to have gotten LTE but it promptly ends when u enter the two major towns around here.

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