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Thread: The Freedom network experience, for newcomers

  1. #1
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    The Freedom network experience, for newcomers

    There's been a whole whack of promos over the last few months, introducing many newcomers to the Freedom Mobile network.
    With the new marketing campaign many more are being enticed to make the switch.

    If you're thinking of moving, the 'post your speedtest' thread might distort expectations (103 Mbps?! gotta have some of that!!).

    This thread is for the real world experience of those new to the network. It is intended to be helpful to others.

    How are you finding the LTE? Is the 3G livable?
    Do you have service where you need?
    Issues with calls or messages?
    Is it worth the savings?

    Question about the service in your area? Ask here.

    Those who've been with Freedom for a while that see a significant change in their user experience should post.

    Bear in mind we will see new LTE spectrum come online in the next few months, B7 and 700MHz B13 (better propagation).

    --
    Freedom Mobile's official coverage map
    Up-to-date listing and map of Freedom cell sites: sites.postpro.net
    Last edited by pjw918; 10-25-2017 at 04:46 PM. Reason: service; changes, coverage, sites

  2. #2
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    Tips on posting

    Please be matter-of-fact.

    Please include location (City, area, major intersection), and time of tests.
    Specify your device, and whether it is non-Freedom sourced.

    PLEASE take pity on the readers of this thread and AVOID posting SCREENSHOTS.
    Better, just the numbers ma'am. DL, UL, ping.


    Be cool and post the classic Speedtest results panel.
    Get your results Test ID from one of the share options.

    The png image URL takes this form (use your own ID number):
    for iPhone tests:
    If you see an MMS share option, that should have the ready-made png URL.

    To display the panel image in your post:
    - click on the insert image icon
    - choose From URL
    - paste the png URL, as above
    - uncheck "Retrieve remote file"

    The end result.

    Last edited by pjw918; 10-25-2017 at 01:49 PM.

  3. #3
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    To lead, acurrie's Toronto experience as he reported yesterday.

    Quote Originally Posted by acurrie View Post


    Here is Freedom Mobile's LTE network at its very best in downtown Toronto, observed by yours truly in the second SIM slot of his Band 66-compatible OnePlus 5. I've definitely recorded better download speeds on Bell/Koodo/TELUS in the same neighbourhood, but Freedom's speeds—and the low latency in particular—is perfectly acceptable for almost anything you'd ask a modern smartphone to do.

    But here's the thing: in my three days of informal testing across the GTA that LTE signal was pretty hard to come by. More often than not I was stuck on HSPA+, sometimes even on (gasp) 3G!

    Not only that, but I can recall two incidents in particular where Freedom let me down entirely: the first was in the parking lot at IKEA North York, where the latency was so bad that launching Google Maps yielded no traffic data; the second was in the basement of Hudson's Bay Company at Queen and Yonge, where I was surprised to suddenly find myself with no signal at all.

    The rest of the time data on Freedom was slow but serviceable. I did keep an eye on my phone's status bar, and when a rare 4G signal magically appeared I immediately did a speed test, with results similar to what you see above. This may, of course, be an issue unique to my unsupported hardware. But a chat with a rep at my local Freedom outlet gave me the impression that the phones sold by the carrier exhibit similar behaviour.

    I will never fault anyone for choosing Freedom Mobile to vote with their wallet; Canada's Big Three carriers have been ripping us off for far too long. But while I'd definitely recommend an LTE upgrade to an existing user, I also think that any Big Three customer looking to jump ship is in for a disappointing ride.

  4. #4
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    Ottawa Westend Baseline n Greenbank

    Sent from my LG G6
    Promo 50 = Unlimited Talk (US n Canada), Worldwide Txt, MMS and Data Home network (8 gig throttle)
    Roaming 2400 mins, Unlimited Global Txt, 1 Gig Data than Throttled but hasn't happened yet Used 5 gigs full speed in Florida

    Rate= $50 - F&F 35% off (life until I cancel Line) plus BTS = $27.50 a month

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    That works.
    You can post a crop of the big honkin' screenshot, showing us just what's useful.
    Though on the mobile site the jpg will blow up to fill the width of the screen.
    The posted png panel doesn't, it stays compact.

    Once you understand the png URL, it's easy to post the panel from a test ID.
    It's just android/ID.png, or iphone/ID.png, appended to www.speedtest.net/

    And just to reiterate, this thread is more about user experience than numbers.
    Last edited by pjw918; 10-25-2017 at 04:19 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pjw918 View Post
    Excellent!
    You can also post a crop of that big honkin' screenshot, showing us just what's useful.

    [once you understand the png URL, it gets very easy to post a panel from just the test ID]
    I wanted to be noticed lol

    Sent from my LG G6

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    Okay I figured out how to edit.

    Toronto Steeles and Leslie. I have service where I need it for the most part.

    This is my fastest speedtest:



    On LTE I get at least 15mbps, it's usually between 30-60, some areas are faster.
    Most of downtown has LTE, as well as the Yonge corridor and some other major streets and areas.
    When I'm on LTE it's almost always good(except phone calls)

    The rest is H/H+, especially when going indoors or underground even if LTE signal is strong outside.

    This is a normal speed test on H+, although it can go up to 10mpbs


    I get LTE about 50m away with 30-60mbps speeds but here(home) it's only gone on LTE once. 3G is almost unusable when it rains.

    There's a lot of inconsistency on Freedom's network. Signal will bounce from full bars to 1 bar or dropping off the network in a few minutes, in the same spot. This just doesn't happen on a proper network.

    Also call quality almost always sucks, and for some stupid reason they get disconnected after exactly 2hr.

    Still, the service does what I need it to do. It's also gotten a lot more usable lately, especially with the addition of LTE.

    I'll be adding to this post here and there.

    Today LTE wasn't working at Steeles and Yonge, it was connected with good signal but there was no communication until it switched to 3/4G. The LTE is working in the subway.

    Yonge and Steeles 4G:
    Last edited by BOOOST; 10-25-2017 at 11:52 AM.

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    Name:  ImageUploadedByHoFo1508906055.492046.jpg
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    Bowmanville, ON. Just east of Oshawa.

  9. #9
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    Toronto

    Quote Originally Posted by pjw918 View Post
    To lead, acurrie's Toronto experience as he reported yesterday.
    Hey, did anyone notice that my carrier in that speed test badge is incorrectly listed as TELUS? I don't think Ookla's app supports dual SIM phones yet.
    My mobile memoirs — free ebook available here.
    My HoFo feedback... is that still a thing?

  10. #10
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    I signed up with Freedom about two weeks ago. I was previously a Mobilicity customer who ported in from Chatr. I'm using a Moto E4.

    So far, I've found myself in Vancouver, Burnaby, and New West. So far, I'd say the service is worse than when I was previously with Wind Mobile. While everyone else always complained about their "Swiss cheese" network, I always found myself with a signal everywhere I went, except for one place: the Blarney Stone. I got full bars outside, nothing inside. Otherwise, I had no complaints. I moved to Mobilicity because of the insane deal ($29/month unlimited everything), and because, oddly, they got the absolute best signal at the place I used to work. That made zero sense to me. The signal was sketchy at best for everyone, often picking up a signal only if you weren't holding the phone. Wind had a tower a couple hundred feet away. And yet, Mobilicity had no signal problems whatsoever.

    I decided to move to Freedom after Chatr decided to up their rates for former Mobilicity customers. At $30/month, I could live with Chatr's issues. Data would always cut out for about 20 seconds at a time, all the time. There were dead spots along the Skytrain. And the phone would just randomly disconnect from the network at times. These weren't phone issues. Hell, I didn't even realize that other people had these issues as well until I read a post about it on these forums.

    My Freedom experience has been... uneven. The call quality has been fine. My problems so far are signal related. I find that I'm generally always connected to LTE. I did find it odd that I couldn't get LTE at the store I signed up in at Metrotown. They could set up a femtocell or something to give an LTE signal there in the store. LTE works in other places in the mall. Signal is all over the place at work. It can be anywhere from full bars LTE, to no bars but still useable data 3G, to network unavailable. But the more disappointing part to me is some fairly big dead spots along the Skytrain. There seems to be an especially big one between Edmonds and 22nd Street station, but there are others as well. My other major gripe is random network disconnections. I get a good LTE signal at home, and I'll notice the signal completely drop while I'm using my phone.

    I have no complaints about data speeds. Honestly, I really didn't have any problems with usability the 3Mb capped speeds on Chatr. No, I wasn't going to win an pissing contests about how fast my speeds were, but it was fast enough (when it worked). The LTE speeds have been impressive so far. Near downtown Vancouver, I just got 80-90Mbs on download, just under 30Mbs on upload. Burnaby and New West, 45Mb/25Mb has been the slowest I've seen on LTE so far. 3G has been acceptable, 3-4Mb down. One test had acceptable upload speed, one got an abysmal 0.12Mb. That is pretty reminiscent of what I used to get on Wind.

    The data speeds aren't what made it worth paying the extra $5/month to go to Freedom, compared to the raised rates with Chatr. The latency is, for sure. My LTE pings haven't been higher than 20ms, and the better latency is definitely noticeable.

    Unless we happen to see a return of the $40/4GB plans from last year, I'll be sticking with Freedom. And once Freedom launches their 700MHz and 2500Mhz spectrum in Vancouver, perhaps I'll even have signal everywhere I go. The network disconnections have been annoying, but it was something that I was already living with on Chatr. (Thinking about this makes me miss the old Mobilicity network. The data speeds were often all over the place. But there was only one place that I ever found myself without signal, and this place is cell phone purgatory. Rogers 2G is the only good signal available. Everyone else, inside or outside, maybe you get a signal, maybe you don't.) The data is significantly faster on LTE, and a wash on 3G, but the latency is what is truly impressive, and very noticeable. There is essentially no difference in usability between cellular and a 150Mb home internet connection.

    As a side note, I saw on here that Freedom has launched some LTE on AWS out in Abbotsford. I'm hoping they do that out this way as well. I might hurry the hell up and replace the battery in my Lumia Icon, or pick up an Alcatel Idol 4S. I don't hate my Moto E4. I actually like it a lot more than I expected. But damn do I ever miss Windows Phone. I'll go down with the sinking ship if I can get some AWS LTE.

  11. #11
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    How are you finding the LTE? Is the 3G livable? The speed is definitely slows down a lot compares to what I had when I was still with Fido especially when I watch Netflix or a simple web browsing but is not the end because I’m surrounded by Wi-Fi because of work and I have Wi-Fi access at home so it’s not a big deal.

    Do you have service where you need?
    I live in the basement so I get from no service to 2 bars depending which spot I’m at.

    Issues with calls or messages?
    Calls so far is ok but not great and message is fine as I use WhatsApp/fb messenger so I still have data to back it.

    Is it worth the savings?
    At first I wasn’t a fan of it but then again I don’t make a lot of phone calls as I mainly do texting so at the end I saved about 50$(Fido)

    Question about the service in your area? Ask here.
    I’m in Toronto near bloor and Bathurst so far the service been great and haven’t seen any bad signal service.

  12. #12
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    Repost:
    Well it’s been almost 2 weeks since I’ve switched over and I’ve officially now ported my Telus number to Freedom as I’ve been convinced that Freedom will provide me with what I need to do with my phone. I was also in Saskatchewan for a few days so I got to experience Away and had no problem with it. My plan allows for 500mbs and 2400 minutes so for a few days and having wifi where I was staying, it wasn’t a problem at all. My speed tests at home are comparable to Telus and outside of my home I don’t ever have an issue. I’ve downloaded podcasts and listened to streaming radio, all without issue. I do think that my frustration level might be higher if I didn’t have wifi at home as my signal here still jumps from LTE to 3G at times but the second I get home, wifi takes over and all is fine. The network in Edmonton seems to have definitely improved over the past 2 weeks.
    I am basically saving $35 from my Telus plan so I am willing to give up a little bit in the way of frustration and so far it’s been tolerable.
    I do wish my phone could pick up Band 66 but the iPhone 7+ can’t. Is something coming down the pipes that will improve the network outside of Band 66 that my phone can take advantage of?

  13. #13
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    Update from acurrie after a month of Freedom, downtown Toronto:

    Some Howard Forums members seem to have a hard time believing this, but Freedom's service in downtown Toronto has, in more than a month's worth of use, been surprisingly good. I can think of only two places where I've not had a reliable signal—in the basement of The Bay's Queen Street store and a lawyer's office where there weren't any nearby windows.
    http://www.howardforums.com/showthre...8#post16942868

  14. #14
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    This is a very good thread. People posting their experiences with Freedom- Location, speed overall reception will help others make the switch to Wind. Big 3 will match but they won't match the unlimited. I wouldn't mind a 10GB plan of full speed then at a lower speed afterwards at $50. Would still be unlimited. Hopefully that will happen soon.

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    I feel this information is relevant and crucial here for anyone who is joining Freedom with an iPhone, and are porting in their number. Many users have experienced problems activating iMessage when not following these steps, problems which take weeks to resolve in some cases. (OP by Driver8666)

    Quote Originally Posted by Driver8666 View Post
    Whatever you do, do NOT activate the Temp numbers for iMessage and FaceTime. You'll run into problems down the road later from what I know. You need to have the permanent numbers activated on your phones in order to use FaceTime and iMessage. The iPhone might try to activate the temp numbers for iMessage and FaceTime. In other words, the temp number will be used for iMessage and FaceTime instead of the number you are assigned, and it might lead to reactivation issues. It's best to try this stunt with an Android that has at least Bands 7, and 66 in them. Band 7 at the least. If the Android is good, then you can use the iPhone and set it up once you have a permanent number. I still retain an Android just solely for that reason. It has Band 7 but not 66.

    When you activate your iPhone with Apple, you MUST have the following:

    1. SIM Card inserted at the time of setup.
    2. Permanent number assigned.

    Your number is the one that will be registered with Apple. So as I mentioned before, it's best to have the permanent numbers assigned to your phones for activation rather than the temp ones.
    Sent from my Nexus 6P using HoFo mobile app

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