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Sprint: The best network for phone geeks?


CriticalityEvent

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I’ve kept this theory to myself for a while, but then this review of the LG Optimus G kind of made me comfortable enough to at least see if others shared my opinion.

 

My rationale initially stemmed from the fact that their phones seem to be fairly top-of-the-line when they make their debuts, at least compared to other U.S. carriers. Back in the Windows Mobile (NOT Windows Phone) days, I believe that phones like the Mogul, Touch Pro, Touch Pro 2, etc… all came out on Sprint at least a little before other carriers offered their variants. Flash forward to 2010, when the original EVO came out. Reviewers stated that even if you didn’t have WiMAX in your area, the phone itself warranted heavy consideration since the hardware was pretty unmatched on other carriers’ devices.

 

Now, let’s look back at the review of the LG. The line, “Kudos to Sprint for keeping clutter to a minimum and bundling just two apps” stands out as another prime example of my sentiment (the fact that it was block-quoted and enlarged also helped it stand out). My EVO 4G LTE had barely any bloatware on it, effectively reducing my need to use Titanium for that task and clearing the app tray for apps that users will actually use because they bothered to download them. LTE connectivity issues aside, this phone was ahead of most other phones on U.S. carriers until the S3 came out.

 

I think that an argument could be made for T-Mobile, however. Their network (GSM) and policies (bring your own phone) allow for a broader range of devices, but the devices that they offer in their stores have seemed somewhat lackluster at times. Verizon will always leave a bad taste in my mouth because they always seem slow to the high-end game and I recall them pushing manufacturers to make their phones extra hard to root.

 

Any thoughts/differing opinions?

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The only thing I wish was different about sprint, is that I wish they used standard simcards/GSM. When I had att, swapping simcards was so much less a pain then either calling in or using the web system to change phones.

 

If att had introduced better android phones sooner, and hadn't dropped unlimited data and putting hardcaps on existing unlimited plans, I would have stayed with them.

 

The EVO4G won me over from att and sprints continued dedication to good/high end android phones (even with the introduction of the iphone) and unlimited data has kept me here, despite much worse 3g speeds than att. Thankfully I have had wimax in 95% of the areas I frequent so the occasional trip to 3zzzz land was tolerable.

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Oh, also, Sprint has the best Phone Rooting/Unlocking policy. All the Samsung devices have full Odin support available, HTC can be unlocked via HTCDev. Surprisingly few Sprint phones are completely locked down...

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I’ve kept this theory to myself for a while, but then this review of the LG Optimus G kind of made me comfortable enough to at least see if others shared my opinion.

 

My rationale initially stemmed from the fact that their phones seem to be fairly top-of-the-line when they make their debuts, at least compared to other U.S. carriers. Back in the Windows Mobile (NOT Windows Phone) days, I believe that phones like the Mogul, Touch Pro, Touch Pro 2, etc… all came out on Sprint at least a little before other carriers offered their variants. Flash forward to 2010, when the original EVO came out. Reviewers stated that even if you didn’t have WiMAX in your area, the phone itself warranted heavy consideration since the hardware was pretty unmatched on other carriers’ devices.

 

Now, let’s look back at the review of the LG. The line, “Kudos to Sprint for keeping clutter to a minimum and bundling just two apps” stands out as another prime example of my sentiment (the fact that it was block-quoted and enlarged also helped it stand out). My EVO 4G LTE had barely any bloatware on it, effectively reducing my need to use Titanium for that task and clearing the app tray for apps that users will actually use because they bothered to download them. LTE connectivity issues aside, this phone was ahead of most other phones on U.S. carriers until the S3 came out.

 

I think that an argument could be made for T-Mobile, however. Their network (GSM) and policies (bring your own phone) allow for a broader range of devices, but the devices that they offer in their stores have seemed somewhat lackluster at times. Verizon will always leave a bad taste in my mouth because they always seem slow to the high-end game and I recall them pushing manufacturers to make their phones extra hard to root.

 

Any thoughts/differing opinions?

 

Seems like Sprint has historically gotten a lot of cool phones at the same time as, if not before than, competing carriers.

 

These days though, the big difference between Sprint and its competitors is how much bloatware gets put on a given phone. AT&T is worst, Verizon comes up second, and Sprint and T-Mobile keep their phones pretty free of such madness. The gap between carriers' high-end phones has closed in recent years, though you may not be able to get the same device on every carrier (e.g. Sprint's Optimus G doesn't have a memory card slot, AT&T's One X doesn't either, and Verizon has the Razr HD instead of the One X).

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The only thing I wish was different about sprint, is that I wish they used standard simcards/GSM

 

You can keep your GSM, thank you very much.

 

Don't get me wrong. SIM cards are awesome. I've used them in Nextel, T-Mobile and Cingular/AT&T phones...and my VZW iPad. However you can do something pretty similar on CDMA phones with an online tool to re-associate MEIDs...and CDMA carriers don't have to support a 2G-only network for the foreseeable future (GSM/GPRS/EDGE) as they transition most of their customers to LTE. Supporting GSM/H+ would put Sprint at a spectrum disadvantage vs. everyone else, so I'm glad they didn't go down that route.

 

...geez, it feels like I'm channeling AJ here...

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...geez, it feels like I'm channeling AJ here...

 

"Good, good..."

 

 

AJ

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I’ve kept this theory to myself for a while, but then this review of the LG Optimus G kind of made me comfortable enough to at least see if others shared my opinion.

 

My rationale initially stemmed from the fact that their phones seem to be fairly top-of-the-line when they make their debuts, at least compared to other U.S. carriers. Back in the Windows Mobile (NOT Windows Phone) days, I believe that phones like the Mogul, Touch Pro, Touch Pro 2, etc… all came out on Sprint at least a little before other carriers offered their variants. Flash forward to 2010, when the original EVO came out. Reviewers stated that even if you didn’t have WiMAX in your area, the phone itself warranted heavy consideration since the hardware was pretty unmatched on other carriers’ devices.

 

Now, let’s look back at the review of the LG. The line, “Kudos to Sprint for keeping clutter to a minimum and bundling just two apps” stands out as another prime example of my sentiment (the fact that it was block-quoted and enlarged also helped it stand out). My EVO 4G LTE had barely any bloatware on it, effectively reducing my need to use Titanium for that task and clearing the app tray for apps that users will actually use because they bothered to download them. LTE connectivity issues aside, this phone was ahead of most other phones on U.S. carriers until the S3 came out.

 

I think that an argument could be made for T-Mobile, however. Their network (GSM) and policies (bring your own phone) allow for a broader range of devices, but the devices that they offer in their stores have seemed somewhat lackluster at times. Verizon will always leave a bad taste in my mouth because they always seem slow to the high-end game and I recall them pushing manufacturers to make their phones extra hard to root.

 

Any thoughts/differing opinions?

 

I'm assuming you're someone who gets bored and wants to change devices frequently.

 

AT&T uses standard GSM global frequencies, so you can buy, sell, and trade international editions, T-mobile branded, ATT branded, and even some Verizon branded phones.

 

No other carrier offers anywhere near that level of flexibility and compatibility, you're stuck with branded devices on CDMA based carriers, and T-mobile has the limitation of using non-standard frequencies like AWS (buy an international phone and you'll be stuck on edge, until their re-farming project is completed 1.5 years from now)

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AT&T uses standard GSM global frequencies...

 

Not so fast. "tandard GSM global frequencies" are the GSM 900 MHz and DCS 1800 MHz bands, both used extensively outside of North America, neither used in North America (at least, not in the three countries that matter). Now, quad band GSM -- Cellular 850 MHz, GSM 900 MHz, DCS 1800 MHz, PCS 1900 MHz -- has become ubiquitous. Is that what you are calling "standard GSM global frequencies"?

 

Regardless, the lone standard W-CDMA global frequency is the UMTS 2100+1900 MHz band, which is not in use in North America. (The Eurasians like to screw with Americans, even though or, perhaps, because the US is still the single most important market in the world.) AT&T requires W-CDMA in both Cellular 850 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz bands, both of which may be common on many international handsets but are by no means given.

 

AJ

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Don't get me wrong. SIM cards are awesome.

 

Here in the US, SIM cards should be called SUP cards -- Steal and Use the Phone cards. Steal the phone, pop in your own SIM card, and go. That GSM carriers AT&T and T-Mobile have been so slow to institute a stolen device blacklist is unconscionable.

 

AJ

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. . . Sprint has Google Wallet on all their NFC-capable phones.

 

Not all. The NFC-capable Photon Q, for some unknown reason, is not compatible (yet?) with Google Wallet.

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Not all. The NFC-capable Photon Q, for some unknown reason, is not compatible (yet?) with Google Wallet.

Huh, you are absolutely right. How strange. So much for Google's influence over their now-owned company.
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Not so fast. "tandard GSM global frequencies" are the GSM 900 MHz and DCS 1800 MHz bands, both used extensively outside of North America, neither used in North America (at least, not in the three countries that matter). Now, quad band GSM -- Cellular 850 MHz, GSM 900 MHz, DCS 1800 MHz, PCS 1900 MHz -- has become ubiquitous. Is that what you are calling "standard GSM global frequencies"?

 

Regardless, the lone standard W-CDMA global frequency is the UMTS 2100+1900 MHz band, which is not in use in North America. (The Eurasians like to screw with Americans, even though or, perhaps, because the US is still the single most important market in the world.) AT&T requires W-CDMA in both Cellular 850 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz bands, both of which may be common on many international handsets but are by no means given.

 

AJ

 

That was the obvious meaning.

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Thanks for the anal retentive "non-correction."

 

If you do not like to be corrected or clarified, tough. Be more specific in the first place. I have little patience for ambiguity. My tolerance of you, too, may be wearing thin.

 

AJ

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"Good, good..."

 

AJ

 

I pictured you more like this:

 

 

:-P

 

 

I'm assuming you're someone who gets bored and wants to change devices frequently.

 

I actually did switch out fairly frequently back in the day, but I kept my OG EVO for the full 2 year contract before switching up to the EVO 4G LTE. I think I’m more of a “commitment” sort of guy now that I’m in the latter-half of my 20’s. You could say I’m looking to settle down with the right one (for 2 years at a time) instead of whoring around like I did in my WinMo days.

 

However, I believe that this is a testament to what I was saying before in that high-end phones get the geeks’ attention and therefore better third-party support. This third-party support means that high-end phones can now be kept current for longer periods of time.

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That was the obvious meaning.

 

You can change your post, but that does not change the answer.

 

No, not obvious. GSM 900 MHz and DCS 1800 MHz are the so called "global" bands. Cellular 850 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz are largely North American bands.

 

Regardless, GSM 850/900/1800/1900 quad band capability does not reflect at all on W-CDMA capability. Plenty of international quad band GSM devices lack W-CDMA 850, W-CDMA 1900, or both. In other words, those devices are potentially impotent on AT&T -- unless the user is happy with GPRS/EDGE speeds that make EV-DO look like LTE.

 

AJ

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You can change your post, but that does not change the answer.

 

No, not obvious. GSM 900 MHz and DCS 1800 MHz are the so called "global" bands. Cellular 850 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz are largely North American bands.

 

Regardless, GSM 850/900/1800/1900 quad band capability does not reflect at all on W-CDMA capability. Plenty of international quad band GSM devices lack W-CDMA 850, W-CDMA 1900, or both. In other words, those devices are potentially impotent on AT&T -- unless the user is happy with GPRS/EDGE speeds that make EV-DO look like LTE.

 

AJ

 

I'm sure they can slap a Viagra branded "signal booster" sticker on there to feel less self-conscious of their devices short-comings :frantic:

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You can change your post, but that does not change the answer.

 

No, not obvious. GSM 900 MHz and DCS 1800 MHz are the so called "global" bands. Cellular 850 MHz and PCS 1900 MHz are largely North American bands.

 

Regardless, GSM 850/900/1800/1900 quad band capability does not reflect at all on W-CDMA capability. Plenty of international quad band GSM devices lack W-CDMA 850, W-CDMA 1900, or both. In other words, those devices are potentially impotent on AT&T -- unless the user is happy with GPRS/EDGE speeds that make EV-DO look like LTE.

 

AJ

 

Which is all easy enough to check when someone is interested in acquiring the latest device from a vendor like Expansys.

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Here in the US, SIM cards should be called SUP cards -- Steal and Use the Phone cards. Steal the phone, pop in your own SIM card, and go. That GSM carriers AT&T and T-Mobile have been so slow to institute a stolen device blacklist is unconscionable. AJ

 

Yep at a previous job dealing with shipping packages, can't remember the company, think it was wirefly, people would steal the AT&T phones and leave the Sprint and Verizon phones alone. Never saw any tmobile phones.

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