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Thread: Official maps no longer show LTE roaming, partners missing

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by GSMinCT View Post
    I'm sure it's GCI. You can do a couple hundred mbps over satellite easily, but the costs would be astronomical... supposedly the military can do gigabit connections via satellite almost anywhere in the world. The reality for commercial telecom is that the satellite connections suck, have ridiculous latency (above what the physics would dictate), and have lousy bandwidth available.
    The only reason I would guess it could possibly even be satellite would be the fact that AT&T (via their Alascom subdivision) owns the satellite. Still, yes, bandwidth is limited and would be a constraint. Last time I was there, I thought it was amusing that I had a better voice connection calling via VoIP over the B&B's GCI cable modem (with ~50ms latency to Seattle) than I did over native cellular (with an audible delay of almost a full second).


    Quote Originally Posted by GSMinCT View Post
    A good satellite connection would be. The reality is that many satellite connections are much higher. Barrow, AK was 1400ms when I tested it on Wi-Fi, I don't think I ever got a Speedtest to even complete on cellular.
    I've done ~600ms pings over GCI in Barrow, but yes, cellular is basically non-functional. I blame that on a) the fact it's EDGE and b) the fact it's ASTAC. (I have a friend who works in AT&T network engineering and married a girl from Barrow, and he has many amusing things to say about ASTAC's network...)

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    Quote Originally Posted by jtludwig View Post
    The LTE roaming in Cordova isn’t with GCI. It’s with Cordova wireless using leased spectrum from AT&T.
    That's interesting. I didn't realize there was another provider up there doing roamer networks (do they sell retail too?).

    **UPDATE**. I forgot to mention that T-Mobile has full speed unrestricted roaming on GCI’s network throughout the state that isn’t subject to roaming caps. They are on friendlier terms since they aren’t direct competitors.
    I think it has a lot to do with the fact that GCI needs a nationwide Lower 48 network, and T-Mobile fits the bill, so they cross-roam. T-Mobile is great in Seattle where GCI would have the most Lower 48 roaming.

    Quote Originally Posted by alaskanjackal View Post
    The only reason I would guess it could possibly even be satellite would be the fact that AT&T (via their Alascom subdivision) owns the satellite. Still, yes, bandwidth is limited and would be a constraint. Last time I was there, I thought it was amusing that I had a better voice connection calling via VoIP over the B&B's GCI cable modem (with ~50ms latency to Seattle) than I did over native cellular (with an audible delay of almost a full second).
    I can't quite figure out how the business side of that all works. ASTAC uses AT&T satellite in Barrow, yet AT&T phones have almost no data. You'd think it wouldn't have been hard for ASTAC to get enough bandwidth for fully functional 3G up there, but they didn't. Now, it's basically irrelevant, as they will have fiber soon. That's interesting, and unfortunate that AT&T was still using satellite when a bunch better connection was available. And WOW, 50ms is impressive for that whole system of fiber and microwave.

    I've done ~600ms pings over GCI in Barrow, but yes, cellular is basically non-functional. I blame that on a) the fact it's EDGE and b) the fact it's ASTAC. (I have a friend who works in AT&T network engineering and married a girl from Barrow, and he has many amusing things to say about ASTAC's network...)
    Interesting. In 2012 when I tested it, I was getting about 1400ms. I think the school system's WiFi was a lot faster, as they had their own satellite link, IIRC. Their "network" that's funny, I think they have two towers in Barrow, and a handful of villages with one tower each?

    Unfortunately, they broke something with EDGE, I'm not sure if they overloaded the satellite backhaul, or messed something up with the EDGE itself, but it worked when they had GPRS, and stopped working most of the time when they put EDGE in. Maybe they prioritize their own customers over AT&T's on the backhaul.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevink1 View Post
    I just switched to ATT Prepaid from Verizon. Which worked well in Nebraska last summer. If this is a real cutback on data, I have an inexpensive backup plan on a Verizon MVNO.
    when you went to nebraska did your data work on att prepaid?

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    When I was in Nebraska I was still on Verizon. Which worked well on I-80 and in the counties surrounding Lincoln.
    Overly complicated cell phone service. Unlimited with iPhone X. Low cost plan on other national network with iPhone 7+. And a real cheap pay per use plan for "home number" with Moto E4. Combination of best chance for coverage when traveling, and a home replacement number to give out when I don't want to give out my primary cell phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kevink1 View Post
    When I was in Nebraska I was still on Verizon. Which worked well on I-80 and in the counties surrounding Lincoln.
    Quote Originally Posted by elevatorman View Post
    when you went to nebraska did your data work on att prepaid?



    Data works everywhere in the state where there is service. Nebraska no longer has any 2G roaming towers - Viaero has apparently finished or is in the last stages of finishing a LTE upgrade. There might be a few towers that have 3G but not LTE but nothing 2G-only left. AT&T proper still has a handful of 3G-only towers in Blair (2), Fremont (1), Grand Island (1) and Lincoln (1 tower and 2 DAS). There are also 100 Commnet towers that identify as AT&T on-air and they are all 3G.

    In other words, anywhere in Nebraska you can get service, data should work fine, whether on AT&T's native LTE network or roaming.

    By the way, a relative in Nebraska said that Viaero LTE data roaming was still working fine as of yesterday. I have several relatives there and almost all are on AT&T and take day trips for work or pleasure, so I am usually pretty quick to hear if there are changes, new coverage areas, or something not working right. Despite the uncertainty surrounding the maps, I know now that nothing has changed at least in Nebraska as of this weekend. This gives hope that any of the other areas showing loss of roaming coverage are merely errors.
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    I recommend and use CellMapper and Sensorly for testing and mapping signal coverage and have contributed extensively to both projects in the greater St. Louis region and surrounding states.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskanjackal View Post
    The only reason I would guess it could possibly even be satellite would be the fact that AT&T (via their Alascom subdivision) owns the satellite. Still, yes, bandwidth is limited and would be a constraint. Last time I was there, I thought it was amusing that I had a better voice connection calling via VoIP over the B&B's GCI cable modem (with ~50ms latency to Seattle) than I did over native cellular (with an audible delay of almost a full second).




    I've done ~600ms pings over GCI in Barrow, but yes, cellular is basically non-functional. I blame that on a) the fact it's EDGE and b) the fact it's ASTAC. (I have a friend who works in AT&T network engineering and married a girl from Barrow, and he has many amusing things to say about ASTAC's network...)
    When was the last time you were in Barrow? According to this, there should be HSPA in the area.

    http://www.akbizmag.com/Telecom-Tech...ice-to-Barrow/

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    Quote Originally Posted by jtludwig View Post
    When was the last time you were in Barrow? According to this, there should be HSPA in the area.

    http://www.akbizmag.com/Telecom-Tech...ice-to-Barrow/
    Don't know about alaskanjackal, but I was there in 2012 and 2015, semi-functional EDGE both times. I believe that they put up HSPA+, but I'm skeptical that it actually works for data unless they did a massive upgrade to the available backhaul.

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    I was there this summer, and I think you're right--I think it did show up as 3G or 4G.

    It was utterly unusable, though, still.

    (It was EDGE the previous time I was there, back in about 2011 or so.)

    The new Arctic Fiber cable between Prudhoe Bay and Barrow (and around the northwest Alaska coast to Nome and eventually onward to Tokyo and London) went live at the beginning of this month, but it remains to be seen if/when AT&T will move over to that (instead of continuing to use the satellite connection, which they own via their AT&T Alascom division). I will need to ping (no pun intended) a friend with family up there who can get some first-hand reports for me...

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    Appears to be the local service for Deadhorse AK.

    https://goo.gl/maps/d4gXLfrSJBm
    iPhone 7+ (Qualcomm), At&t Unlimited Plus Georgetown, TX ................. Spectrum 400/20, $69.99/month

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nucleartx View Post
    Appears to be the local service for Deadhorse AK.

    https://goo.gl/maps/d4gXLfrSJBm
    AFAIK, Deadhorse has native AT&T service. It has been HSPA+ for many years, as it is on a fiber-optic line (there's been fiber there for a long while due to the oil industry needs). The rest of the North Slope is ASTAC (which AT&T roams on) and has not, until the beginning of December, been connected to anywhere else by terrestrial communications.

    Rather timely of you to post a Google Street View link of Deadhorse, though...I was just cruising around Prudhoe/Deadhorse on Google Maps and noticed that the Google Mapmobile traveled to Deadhorse with a twin.

    ETA: the AT&T coverage map confirms that it's native AT&T 4G in Prudhoe and 3G in the remainder of the oilfield area. Barrow doesn't show with any data coverage but does show 3rd-party coverage when the voice option is selected.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskanjackal View Post
    I was there this summer, and I think you're right--I think it did show up as 3G or 4G.

    It was utterly unusable, though, still.

    (It was EDGE the previous time I was there, back in about 2011 or so.)

    The new Arctic Fiber cable between Prudhoe Bay and Barrow (and around the northwest Alaska coast to Nome and eventually onward to Tokyo and London) went live at the beginning of this month, but it remains to be seen if/when AT&T will move over to that (instead of continuing to use the satellite connection, which they own via their AT&T Alascom division). I will need to ping (no pun intended) a friend with family up there who can get some first-hand reports for me...
    That all sounds about right. I would have to think that everything will get switched over, as satellite has got to cost a fortune. Remember that AT&T doesn't have service in Barrow, it's all ASTAC roaming, so it's really up to ASTAC to make the move. Is the fiber cable to Barrow connected to Prudhoe Bay to get back to the US, or does it have to go through London or Tokyo first? Granted, going through London or Tokyo would add a measurable but small amount of latency and would still be way better than satellite.

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    Official maps no longer show LTE roaming, partners missing

    Quote Originally Posted by GSMinCT View Post
    That all sounds about right. I would have to think that everything will get switched over, as satellite has got to cost a fortune. Remember that AT&T doesn't have service in Barrow, it's all ASTAC roaming, so it's really up to ASTAC to make the move. Is the fiber cable to Barrow connected to Prudhoe Bay to get back to the US, or does it have to go through London or Tokyo first? Granted, going through London or Tokyo would add a measurable but small amount of latency and would still be way better than satellite.
    Nothing is connected to London or Tokyo. It goes back to Prudhoe and then south.

    All that’s done is phase 1. Also, ASTAC is switching everything over per their website. AT&T also signed an agreement with ASTAC where they funded most of the upgrades in the slope region and Barrow and provided the spectrum.

    AT&T also funded some of Quintillions fiber install from Fairbanks to Prudhoe.

    https://insidetowers.com/cell-tower-...ska-wont-easy/

    https://wireless2.fcc.gov/UlsEntry/a...Ind=applAttach

    http://www.akbizmag.com/Telecom-Tech...ice-to-Barrow/




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