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T-Mobile LTE & Network Discussion V2


lilotimz

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Tmobile is basing it's position from its limited experience moving a few stations for ch51. While they seem to have done it very quickly I would not bet on that being transferable to a much larger and more complex scenario. Especially as funds spent speeding up physical installs would likely come from the cash meant for broadcasters. Personally I would guess that the broadcasters want to be able to go slow so they can extract some extra money to speed up, but also there's going to be some serious demand for tower crews. When I plan a project I build in plenty of time for things to get respecced and also for things to go wrong. Tmo wants 600MHz asap and aren't willing to wait a second longer than the minimum. As much as I like tmo if I were a broadcaster I'd be holding my ground for a sane timetable rather than one devised by rainbow colored unicorns.

 

I definitely understand this issue better now than I did when I first posted about it with my support for T-Mobile regarding this. It does sound as they are being a bit too aggressive in what they think should be done on their timeline, without much consideration for those involved in this process. There is a difference between just setting up your own network with what you have, in contrast with having to work with others on transference issues, etc. Now, what I'm not clear on is if there is a penalty to broadcasters for not working within this timeline, which would be something I'm sure the broadcasters want to avoid, which contesting this would be a way to try to change it. Again, I'm not very knowledgeable about technicalities with such situations, and I can see how I gave T-Mobile a bit more credit than I should, as this situation is different, but I definitely wouldn't want to see the 600mhz being delayed much longer either. What would a more reasonable timeframe be in this situation?

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My buddy gave me his old phone and it's unlocked so I picked up a T-Mobile SIM to check out the service again because I haven't looked at them in a while. Does anyone notice that T-Mobile phones have a very hard time holding on to a weak HSPA/WCDMA signal and drop to edge a lot because when I set my phone down on a table for a while, it picks up a bar on 4G but as soon as I pick it up, it goes to edge.

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My buddy gave me his old phone and it's unlocked so I picked up a T-Mobile SIM to check out the service again because I haven't looked at them in a while. Does anyone notice that T-Mobile phones have a very hard time holding on to a weak HSPA/WCDMA signal and drop to edge a lot because when I set my phone down on a table for a while, it picks up a bar on 4G but as soon as I pick it up, it goes to edge.

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My kids phones would do this often. Sometimes it even shows No Service when standing outside.

 

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Your area probably is on the edge of a cell and your hand is enough to block the HSPA signal and drop it down to EDGE.

No I know that, it's just that on AT&T, WCDMA/HSPA eclipses the range of edge. I live on the edge of cell for AT&T as well but I never see edge. It's always -120ish LTE, -110ish to -120ish WCDMA/HSPA or No Service. Is it just the way that T-Mobile has programmed their phones or does edge truly have a greater range than WCDMA/HSPA. Sometimes tmos edge gets up to 3 bars so I don't really know what to think.

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No I know that, it's just that on AT&T, WCDMA/HSPA eclipses the range of edge. I live on the edge of cell for AT&T as well but I never see edge. It's always -120ish LTE, -110ish to -120ish WCDMA/HSPA or No Service. Is it just the way that T-Mobile has programmed their phones or does edge truly have a greater range than WCDMA/HSPA. Sometimes tmos edge gets up to 3 bars so I don't really know what to think.

There's a pretty great chance that some or all of the GSM (/GPRS/EDGE) layers in ATT's network in your area may have been sunset already. They have been thinning GSM pretty steadily as they add more LTE carriers.

 

So in this scenario, either your particular serving cell no longer has GSM, or they may be running GSM in PCS only (for whatever reason) where UMTS may be running on 850.

 

One of the reasons GSM typically out "carriers" UMTS signal is that with GSM it's a multi-frequency network, versus single-frequency, so each channel has a 'dedicated' spectrum allocation, allowing them to run GSM at higher power levels than UMTS which has to manage co-channel interference due to its single-frequency design. Obviously with GSM you have a reuse factor, but in most non-urban environments, the network isn't dense enough to need to significantly dial back the GSM side.

 

 

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No I know that, it's just that on AT&T, WCDMA/HSPA eclipses the range of edge. I live on the edge of cell for AT&T as well but I never see edge. It's always -120ish LTE, -110ish to -120ish WCDMA/HSPA or No Service. Is it just the way that T-Mobile has programmed their phones or does edge truly have a greater range than WCDMA/HSPA. Sometimes tmos edge gets up to 3 bars so I don't really know what to think.

 

That really all depends on what frequencies the technologies are using. In suburban Lake County, IN AT&T 2G is still on 850 (and I believe they may have just shut off GSM on PCS across the entire Chicago market to make way for 15 mhz B2 LTE) So here 2G/EDGE still beats out WCDMA 850. In Chicago they have (or had) 2G on PCS on most of the sites and very few with 850, so WCDMA 850 beat out 2G most of the time. You could very well have 2G on PCS by you with WCDMA on 850. Over here T-Mobile has 2G and UMTS on PCS so EDGE beats it out by a small margin usually. 

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That really all depends on what frequencies the technologies are using. In suburban Lake County, IN AT&T 2G is still on 850 (and I believe they may have just shut off GSM on PCS across the entire Chicago market to make way for 15 mhz B2 LTE) So here 2G/EDGE still beats out WCDMA 850. In Chicago they have (or had) 2G on PCS on most of the sites and very few with 850, so WCDMA 850 beat out 2G most of the time. You could very well have 2G on PCS by you with WCDMA on 850. Over here T-Mobile has 2G and UMTS on PCS so EDGE beats it out by a small margin usually.

Here AT&T has no EDGE on PCS - they refarmed that to LTE. They do have EDGE on 850 which is why this is so confusing.

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Here AT&T has no EDGE on PCS - they refarmed that to LTE. They do have EDGE on 850 which is why this is so confusing.

 

I guess then there is the possibility that EDGE is not on your nearest serving cell site. If this is consistent across a large area then I have no idea what to say. 

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So in this scenario, either your particular serving cell no longer has GSM, or they may be running GSM in PCS only (for whatever reason) where UMTS may be running on 850.

 

In Seattle, AT&T has some or all band 5 W-CDMA 850.  AT&T holds the Cellular A block.  And we have not seen any evidence that I recall of AT&T refarming Cellular spectrum for band 5 LTE in any major metros, only in some rural areas where it holds no other low band paired spectrum.

 

AJ

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In Seattle, AT&T has some or all band 5 W-CDMA 850.  AT&T holds the Cellular A block.  And we have not seen any evidence that I recall of AT&T refarming Cellular spectrum for band 5 LTE in any major metros, only in some rural areas where it holds no other low band paired spectrum.

 

AJ

 

I have not seen band 5 LTE and in my area AT&T has both A&B sides of 850MHz.

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In Seattle, AT&T has some or all band 5 W-CDMA 850. AT&T holds the Cellular A block. And we have not seen any evidence that I recall of AT&T refarming Cellular spectrum for band 5 LTE in any major metros, only in some rural areas where it holds no other low band paired spectrum.

 

AJ

In Seattle AT&T has all GSM/EDGE/WCDMA on 850, 10x10 B17 LTE, 10x10 B2 LTE and some WCS.

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In Seattle AT&T has all GSM/EDGE/WCDMA on 850, 10x10 B17 LTE, 10x10 B2 LTE and some WCS.

 

Not exactly.  In Seattle, AT&T has a total of 40 MHz of PCS A/B/D block spectrum.  A 10 MHz FDD band 2 carrier occupies only half of that spectrum.  AT&T still has GSM and/or W-CDMA operations in that remaining PCS spectrum.

 

AJ

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Not exactly.  In Seattle, AT&T has a total of 40 MHz of PCS A/B/D block spectrum.  A 10 MHz FDD band 2 carrier occupies only half of that spectrum.  AT&T still has GSM and/or W-CDMA operations in that remaining PCS spectrum.

 

AJ

 

That is possible.  I haven't seen PCS GSM/EDGE or PCS WCDMA/HSPA in a while though.  This may be because I am on the edge of cell on AT&T in most places I spend my time...

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In Seattle, AT&T has some or all band 5 W-CDMA 850. AT&T holds the Cellular A block. And we have not seen any evidence that I recall of AT&T refarming Cellular spectrum for band 5 LTE in any major metros, only in some rural areas where it holds no other low band paired spectrum.

 

AJ

DFW is an A&B area for AT&T and they have band 5 LTE there.

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Has anyone seen any small cells popping up for tmobile

 

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It might not meet the contemporary definition of small cell, but T-Mobile inherited a DAS system from MetroPCS.

 

This article mentions them having 6,000 DAS nodes:

 

http://www.rcrwireless.com/20121116/carriers/metropcs-decommission-10000-sites-part-t-mobile-usa-deal

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It might not meet the contemporary definition of small cell, but T-Mobile inherited a DAS system from MetroPCS.

 

This article mentions them having 6,000 DAS nodes:

 

http://www.rcrwireless.com/20121116/carriers/metropcs-decommission-10000-sites-part-t-mobile-usa-deal

I did hear about that a bit... wonder what markets they have these in

 

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I did hear about that a bit... wonder what markets they have these in

 

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There are quite a few in Los Angeles. About every block on some of the busiest surface streets in the Valley.

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My next question is. With t mobiles spectrum portfolio can they keep up with the with the growing demand from there network . I know over time they can, but what would be there short term fix. Even with recently purchasing aws3 there still behind spirints spectrum portfolio (which all carriers are). T mobile is expected to put up big numbers again this year as far as grwoth.

 

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My next question is. With t mobiles spectrum portfolio can they keep up with the with the growing demand from there network . I know over time they can, but what would be there short term fix. Even with recently purchasing aws3 there still behind spirints spectrum portfolio (which all carriers are). T mobile is expected to put up big numbers again this year as far as grwoth.

 

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They'll figure it out. What I have noticed is in a lot of cities the congestion is a real thing so I know they are working fast to find a resolution. They know it's a issue and and is coming fast that's probably why the company came out and said they they can get a quick turnaround time to get people off the 600mhz so they can use it. I hope they aren't putting their eggs into one basket hoping that will happen.

 

 

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They'll figure it out. What I have noticed is in a lot of cities the congestion is a real thing so I know they are working fast to find a resolution. They know it's a issue and and is coming fast that's probably why the company came out and said they they can get a quick turnaround time to get people off the 600mhz so they can use it. I hope they aren't putting their eggs into one basket hoping that will happen.

 

 

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I do believe they are overselling the network. Don't give me wrong it's a great network, but it's causing millions of people to jump on board (which is a good thing) it does cause the network to overload. Even, if small cells and sector splits are a short term fix. Even those projects take time to complete on a broader scale.. I'm not quite sold in the 600 megahertz yet either. It will help but will they use it in areas where they already have b12, b4, and b2. I would like to see t mobile getting more higher frequency spectrum (sprint's 2.5 would be ideal hint hint lol).

 

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