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T-Mobile LTE & Network Discussion V2


lilotimz

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If texting apps would allow you to send simple texts as MMS, it would solve all the split messaging problems. I think early HTC Sense phones had a feature to send messages as MMS, but as of today, I have yet to find an app that will do that unless I attach a photo or a VCard.

 

I know Handcent automatically converts (or used to) messages longer than 3 texts into MMS. I wish Textra would add that option, or better yet, an option to send a single texts as MMS.

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I don't see how they could ignore the network here much longer. Part of the problem is they are spectrum constrained. Their next move will be refarming PCS, possibly shutting GSM off in the process and getting band 2 LTE up and running. I don't doubt that they already have this in the works for sometime this year, possibly late spring. If they waited any longer than that they'd start losing subs in the area and there's alot of them. 

 

I hope T-Mobile does get around to getting LTE on their PCS spectrum, and hopefully soon.

 

However, what I believe T-Mobile really needs is to negotiate for the 700mhz spectrum being held over from the AT&T/Leap-Cricket deal here. I'm unaware of exactly how much spectrum there is in that, though I'd imagine it is at least around 5x5, if not more. That would go to helping T-Mobile's lack of reach issues around here, which is does have in certain areas AT&T has well covered. Not to be all band 12 fanboy-ish by my saying that though, which I certainly recognize it won't do everything for the network. I think it might be better for T-Mobile to try to get a hold of that spectrum around here soon, if they can, rather than bother with getting much 600mhz here. Otherwise, they ought to get as much 600mhz here and deploy it as quickly as possible, which doesn't seem as realistic as the 700mhz idea for this market.

 

If neither goes well soon for T-Mobile here in that regard, then they ought to start trying to apply for more tower space and get going on the spectrum conversion to LTE. I'll definitely report here what my experiences are with it this week, which I'm hoping are better than they were a few months ago. Still, I can't help but think how great the AT&T signal on Cricket was in many places here, which I'd like for T-Mobile to be closely competitive with.

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Well I switched over to T-Mobile. Honestly I feel as though my experience is way smoother with them. Porting over and getting the account was quick and painless. I was in and out in 30 mins. I love VoLTE. Calling another T-Mobile user it was super clear. So far I have no complains at all but will keep my eye out.

 

I did play the system very well with their buy one get one 50%. I used my sprint 6s plus as a trade in and it paid in full the second 6s plus I got for 50% off. So I walked out a happy camper with a free extra phone that I can do whatever with.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Thanks for the update. Yea VoLTE is absolutely wonderful . Glad you're enjoying your experience.

 

Sent from my SM-N910T

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Thanks for the update. Yea VoLTE is absolutely wonderful . Glad you're enjoying your experience.

 

Sent from my SM-N910T

I'm really loving the service that I'm getting. The difference between them and Sprint are small but where Sprint was lacking like at church or in some stores T-Mobile has picked up and it makes a world of a difference. I did before I ported my number out took a old Sprint phone and opened a additional line and threw the account on seasonal standby just in case but I think that based on how I'm very satisfied that I will just let the entire account go.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Well I ended up reinstating my line with AT&T. Turns out if you do it within 60 days not only does everything go back the way it was, they can also reactivate the same SIM card, so I was able to do it Sunday evening over the phone so I didn't have to go to a store in the snowstorm that day.

 

With T-Mo I didn't have enough data and more importantly the service across the border in IL is lacking compared to AT&T. Ironically T-Mobile blows the doors off AT&T in Lake County, IN but AT&T is usually usable and works most of the time here so I can't complain too much. (It's just that it's erratic, some days the network is great, and some it's an abomination, I blame their self optimizing software.)

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T-Mobile just picked up a bunch of new 700 spectrum. Probably all of the Continuum & Cavalier, plus another block or two elsewhere.
 

In February 2016, T-Mobile entered into agreements with multiple parties to acquire additional 700 MHz A-Block spectrum covering approximately 48 million POPs. These acquisitions will increase T-Mobile’s total low-band spectrum holdings from 210 million POPs to 258 million POPs upon closing.

 

John Legere is speaking about porting ratios right now, they've ported positive against Verizon and overall against the industry, but he didn't mention AT&T or Sprint port ratios (but likely positive for both).

 

edit: He just mentioned that people think that most of the porting adds are coming from Sprint, but that AT&T has lost 1.5 million branded postpaid subs just this year, and that a surprising number of people are moving to T-Mobile from AT&T.

Edited by luvixuha
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T-Mobile just picked up a bunch of new 700 spectrum. Probably all of the Continuum & Cavalier, plus another block or two elsewhere.

Hmm. If they snagged all of the Cavalier, they're gonna be able to seriously compete in Charlotte and NC in general. They already have fantastic site density (they are very spectrum-constrained in Charlotte, 10Mhz FDD in PCS and 15Mhz FDD in AWS with no room to grow) and continue to add sites for capacity in areas seeing development. Downside might be permitting. All of their racks appear specifically fit to hold two AIRs and nothing else, so most sites would require entirely new racks for a new 700 antenna.

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T-Mobile's management team really knows what they're doing.  In terms of attracting customers, retaining customers, network upgrades, and still managing to pull in a profit.  I'm still dumbfounded that Sprint burns through so much cash when not too long ago they had a high ARPU.  Where's all of that money going?!

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The network and paying off debt

Sprint has reached a point where they are just trying to keep up with the high interest charges, not even reducing the principal (spent $2 billion in interest payments last year on $32+ billion of debt).

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I found the Q4 Earnings Call to be very good for T-Mobile and its customers, based on what was reported and discussed there. The concept of video streaming this is an excellent idea I'm a bit surprised other carriers haven't picked up on doing. I especially like how upbeat most everything they say is, in a clear, concise way, even with the jokes I don't happen to like, but understand it all to be part of the whole image T-Mobile is portraying themselves as being the "Uncarrier"

 

I'm unsure if AT&T and Verizon even have their reports publicly available in any form, though I do know Sprint has audio reports of their own when they occur. I've listened to a few of them, which pretty much gave me the same sort of ill feeling as the article posted here about Marcelo's "tour" did, though not the article itself, just its contents regarding what is going on. I like what Sprint has done in improving its network, though more and more I keep thinking about how this was started under a mostly different Sprint organization. They do deserve alot of the credit for the improvements and how there were so many repots of action going on back then, whereas now there hardly is any news about Sprint.

 

I also think if the old organization of Sprint were still around, would they be doing more to improve the public image of Sprint and rebuilding its reputation, sort of like how T-Mobile has done with what they are doing with these reports and all the action talked about during them. Thinking about what Dan Hesse said in the last interview I saw of him some months ago, I think we'd be seeing alot more positive action by him if he were still CEO. The only news I really hear about Sprint are cutbacks, especially in customer sevice, which John Legere made reference to in the video. Sure, Sprint needs to become financially stable, and I believe they are doing good on many of those things, but not on so much of what will likely negatively affect customers. They need more positive reports in the news, not negative.

 

Whereas here, T-Mobile clearly is doing good things, something I must fairly recognize, despite my resentments towards them in the past, which on a personal level, they've done right by my mother's years of account loyalty, and they've really helped me these past few months while I haven't had a device, by holding our account and number, not charging us, until my mother and I worked out some things. Now that we have and I've got a new phone, I'm going back on the T-Mobile account, the loyalty account which now is going to be mine, and my mother having a prepaid account with T-Mobile. Only thing I can think of that will have me switch away now, is if my health gets worse where I really need AT&T's coverage. However, as long as my dual sim Microsoft Lumia 950xl works out well for me, I might end up having both AT&T and T-Mobile sims on the device.

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Hmm. If they snagged all of the Cavalier, they're gonna be able to seriously compete in Charlotte and NC in general. They already have fantastic site density (they are very spectrum-constrained in Charlotte, 10Mhz FDD in PCS and 15Mhz FDD in AWS with no room to grow) and continue to add sites for capacity in areas seeing development. Downside might be permitting. All of their racks appear specifically fit to hold two AIRs and nothing else, so most sites would require entirely new racks for a new 700 antenna.

It was not a problem here across LA and surrounding areas with updated racks. Also note there are low-band compatible AIR21s for an even swap.

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It was not a problem here across LA and surrounding areas with updated racks. Also note there are low-band compatible AIR21s for an even swap.

Didn't know about the low-band AIR21s. Cool stuff. Looking at T4GRU it looks like they're just slightly longer AIRs? I'll have to keep an eye out.

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T-Mobile earned almost $300 million in profit last quarter, more than doubling expectations.

 

http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/john-legere-t-mobile-took-108-industrys-postpaid-phone-growth-last-year/2016-02-17

 

 A pittance compared to the Big 2. Better than Sprint for sure but...when are they going to make some real money? They better do it quickly before 5G comes around, because that will be another very expensive endeavor.

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Biggest thing to watch for T-Mobile right now is churn.  Postpaid Churn stayed at 1.46%.  It will be very interesting to see where that goes in 2016.  If they can keep adding 1 million postpaid subs per quarter in 2016, they are going to be in very good shape as the close out their network expansion.  I am guessing after that they'll probably start to target small cells to improve capacity in urban markets.

 

4Q15 marked the 11th consecutive quarter of positive postpaid porting ratios.

In 4Q15 the overall porting ratio was 1.67, (Verizon =1.44, AT&T = 1.92, Sprint = 1.56).

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Biggest thing to watch for T-Mobile right now is churn.  Postpaid Churn stayed at 1.46%.  It will be very interesting to see where that goes in 2016.  If they can keep adding 1 million postpaid subs per quarter in 2016, they are going to be in very good shape as the close out their network expansion.  I am guessing after that they'll probably start to target small cells to improve capacity in urban markets.

 

4Q15 marked the 11th consecutive quarter of positive postpaid porting ratios.

In 4Q15 the overall porting ratio was 1.67, (Verizon =1.44, AT&T = 1.92, Sprint = 1.56).

 

 

I have a feeling their churn will remain the same or move very slightly either up or down. The fact of the matter is that for every customer who ports out of AT&T or Verizon in those areas where T-Mobile is providing token coverage may leave, but is offset by customers who port out of AT&T and Verizon in the urban markets.

 

Throw in the free LTE routers and femtocells that T-Mobile is handing out to customers and you get a lot of users who are willing to settle on coverage to save money.

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I have a feeling their churn will remain the same or move very slightly either up or down. The fact of the matter is that for every customer who ports out of AT&T or Verizon in those areas where T-Mobile is providing token coverage may leave, but is offset by customers who port out of AT&T and Verizon in the urban markets.

 

Throw in the free LTE routers and femtocells that T-Mobile is handing out to customers and you get a lot of users who are willing to settle on coverage to save money.

 

 

I agree - others out there tend to think T-Mobile is selling an empty cannon and people are going to leave in droves when they become unsatisfied with their experience.

 

The metric to watch for that is Churn, which has only been going down or staying flat.

 

If T-Mobile can add subs so can Sprint - I am not sure why Sprint can't add subs like T-Mobile can.  To me, it's purely marketing at this point.

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I agree - others out there tend to think T-Mobile is selling an empty cannon and people are going to leave in droves when they become unsatisfied with their experience.

 

The metric to watch for that is Churn, which has only been going down or staying flat.

 

If T-Mobile can add subs so can Sprint - I am not sure why Sprint can't add subs like T-Mobile can.  To me, it's purely marketing at this point.

 

There is a saying in the business world, Protect the Base. T-Mobile has done an excellent job of taking their existing network and upgrading it without spending a lot of money. Because that network base is strong, they can easily reduce expenditure and upgrade other parts of their network with that money. Sprint's now in that position with Network Vision pretty much 100% complete. NGN will help in-fill gaps, but the core network is now up to par. 

 

Consider for a moment all of T-Mobile's marketing in those non-urban areas, particularly against Verizon. They are banking on Verizon's universally slow response and general smugness. In those markets, Verizon enjoys a lion's share, and even with a small percentage porting over, the loss isn't felt, or could be offset by new customer growth. In simple numbers, if they have 10 customers and 3 port out, 1 will probably come back when they realize coverage isn't up to par. Net loss is 2 customers who are willing to put up with gaps in coverage or other limitations to save money.

 

The bigger question for T-Mobile will be what their plans to copy Sprint and densify their network. They already said small cells were not on their roadmap, so what is their plan to handle capacity? Right now the solution is to have enough spectrum used so capacity is not an issue, as long as you're in an area with sufficient cell sites. What will happen to all those B2 GMO markets? Will they eventually get upgraded to support B12 if available? Or will T-Mobile wait till the 600mhz auction is over, spectrum is cleared up, and then upgrade those sites? In that time, Sprint, Verizon, and AT&T won't be sitting idle either. We'll see potentially 3x20CA on Sprint sites, Verizon with their AWS and possible PCS refarm, same with AT&T.

 

That's the big question for 2016.

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