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T-Mobile LTE & Network Discussion V2


lilotimz

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I find it very sad and rather backwards now that HD video will not use up customers' data, though browsing the internet will. I suppose that means reading S4GRU, even my long posts here, suddenly will take up more data clogging T-Mobile's network than watching YouTube and Netflix! ;)

 

From what I read it seems that providers can opt out of BingeOn optimization (aka throttling) but it WILL use up customers' data allotment.

 

 

 

 

New Options for Video Providers

Today, T-Mobile announced yet another update and new options for video providers giving them more choice over how Binge On’s video optimization applies to their content. Now video providers can choose to have their content stream at native resolutions – including Ultra HD and beyond – without Binge On’s mobile optimization, using up customers’ high-speed data faster.

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From what I read it seems that providers can opt out of BingeOn optimization (aka throttling) but it WILL use up customers' data allotment.

 

 

 

 

New Options for Video Providers

Today, T-Mobile announced yet another update and new options for video providers giving them more choice over how Binge On’s video optimization applies to their content. Now video providers can choose to have their content stream at native resolutions – including Ultra HD and beyond – without Binge On’s mobile optimization, using up customers’ high-speed data faster.

 

Hmm... I wasn't very clear about that before. However, are customers going to be notified of this? There really ought to be something that notifies customers on every applicable website under BingeOn about their data what does/does not qualify under BingeOn, even when going to a partner website. Otherwise, there are going to be a lot of complaints about this.

 

Also, this is why as I was saying here for a long time, T-Mobile and any other company wishing to adapt similar strategies to the BingeOn concept, would be better off having a data cap, then calling everything unlimited under that data cap, and if customers want to turn that data cap off, there is an option to do so under their online account settings. Much easier to remember that way and then customers won't "accidently" use up their data on something they are going to assume is included.

 

Yet, if T-Mobile doesn't make their changes very clear to their customers, there are going to be a lot of lawsuits and it'll get John Legere very upset on Twitter. John will say things he will later regret and end up losing more popularity among his Magentan followers, some who will make him cry when they leave for Sprint and tweet about it to Marcelo. That ought to free up some of the congestion on the T-Mobile network, at least until John launches BingeOn 2.0, ugh!

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The new technical requirements are much more detailed than before. They even explicitly state that "optimized" video is limited to 1.5Mbps averaged over a minute of video. I think it would've saved them a lot of hassle if they stated that from the beginning instead of only after the EFF discovered it.

 

http://www.t-mobile.com/content/dam/tmo/en-g/pdf/BingeOn-Video-Technical-Criteria-March-2016.pdf

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Fun times, flew into LAX (yuck) and lucky to get 1 mbps with a strong signal. Once away from LAX it got interesting, speed tests between 50 and 90 mbps. 20x20 lte basically everywhere which based on speed tests seems to be overkill at least once you get away from central LA and head south. I'm curious, back home we have 10x10, I'm wondering if they are holding off due to backhaul because they desperately need to transition more spectrum to lte in places like central Maui where lte crawls (sub 1mbps). No point refarming if each tower is only hooked up to a T3 or similar I guess. #SoTmobile 

 

Tmo either seems to fly or suck. I can totally see why people love them and some people hate them. You go from flawless to useless and back again in 10 miles.

Central maui is still crawling for T-Mobile.. I don't know why they're holding up on refarming ASAP.

 

Sprint is blazing so far, I've been to Kehei, and Wailuku + Kahului solid 30+Mbps each time

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The new technical requirements are much more detailed than before. They even explicitly state that "optimized" video is limited to 1.5Mbps averaged over a minute of video. I think it would've saved them a lot of hassle if they stated that from the beginning instead of only after the EFF discovered it.

 

http://www.t-mobile.com/content/dam/tmo/en-g/pdf/BingeOn-Video-Technical-Criteria-March-2016.pdf

 

Ugh, 1.5 mbps for video, yikes! I haven't seen what video looks like using BingeOn, nor do I want to. However, that is a pathetic speed to be delivering video at. The minimum, which could also be the maximum, should be at least 3mbps, double what T-Mobile is claiming. T-Mobile could even offer 1080p at 3mbps. By T-Mobile claiming its set at 1.5 mbps, ought to show customers how T-Mobile really only is allowing customers to BingeOn what T-Mobile Cringes On, which is decent video quality for these days. 1080p ought to be standard, at least no less than 720p. T-Mobile could do this without much trouble, if they were a smart carrier.

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Ugh, 1.5 mbps for video, yikes! I haven't seen what video looks like using BingeOn, nor do I want to. However, that is a pathetic speed to be delivering video at. The minimum, which could also be the maximum, should be at least 3mbps, double what T-Mobile is claiming. T-Mobile could even offer 1080p at 3mbps. By T-Mobile claiming its set at 1.5 mbps, ought to show customers how T-Mobile really only is allowing customers to BingeOn what T-Mobile Cringes On, which is decent video quality for these days. 1080p ought to be standard, at least no less than 720p. T-Mobile could do this without much trouble, if they were a smart carrier.

BingeOn is meant to reduce congestion due to video traffic first. Consumer benefit is secondary no matter how the executives try to spin it. T-Mobile likely arrived at 1.5Mbps based on detailed analysis of how that relieves congestion on the network.
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BingeOn is meant to reduce congestion due to video traffic first. Consumer benefit is secondary no matter how the executives try to spin it. T-Mobile likely arrived at 1.5Mbps based on detailed analysis of how that relieves congestion on the network.

 

More reason why John Legere is so annoying talking about "Customer Pain Points". Watching 480p streaming at 1.5mbps on a 2k display, is enough to cause pain and of course eye strain from the blurry horrible image.

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Watching 480p streaming at 1.5mbps on a 2k display, is enough to cause pain and of course eye strain from the blurry horrible image.

Just for reference, I think it's kind of silly to insinuate that watching "480p" on a ~6" display at likely anywhere between 8-16" viewing distance would cause significant eye strain or even pain.

 

We all love to be videophiles, and we all want the best possible anything, but we tend to want excess as well.

 

Now this quote may have easily been tongue in cheek, but for example, playing back a DVD rip of 'The Office' from Plex at less than 1 Mbps is more than sufficient to enjoy it.

 

Video statistics are 624x352@24 MP4 codec in an AVI container, average bitrate of 943k.

Audio is MP3 container @48kHz, stereo, VBR averaging to 131k.

All together <1024Kbps aka 1 Mbps.

 

44ce772d5c864f089954ed160f2f852e.jpg

 

For me, that is a wholly acceptable amount of detail on a phone. Even mostly acceptable on my 65" DLP.

 

I'm not saying people can't enjoy better bitrates, better quality, better speeds, etc. but often times its diminishing returns. People just always "want the best" when they won't notice a difference between best and decent on screens this small.

 

Just wanted to say that 1.5 Mbps is totally usable for anything I'm trying to do.

 

This is not me advocating for people not having choice for video quality, but rather giving an example of how usable 1.5 Mbps can be more than acceptable for quality on a small screen.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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More reason why John Legere is so annoying talking about "Customer Pain Points". Watching 480p streaming at 1.5mbps on a 2k display, is enough to cause pain and of course eye strain from the blurry horrible image.

That is a pretty bogus and asinine comment coming from someone who hasn't even tried it. Get over it. What is your vision at anyways? 20/20 or better?

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That is a pretty bogus and asinine comment coming from someone who hasn't even tried it. Get over it. What is your vision at anyways? 20/20 or better?

480p looks fine on my 2k display. I don't have a problem with that but I prefer a minimum of 720p if possible because it does look better. 360p is barely watchable and 144p and 240p is so bad I'd rather not watch.

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Just for reference, I think it's kind of silly to insinuate that watching "480p" on a ~6" display at likely anywhere between 8-16" viewing distance would cause significant eye strain or even pain.

 

We all love to be videophiles, and we all want the best possible anything, but we tend to want excess as well.

 

Now this quote may have easily been tongue in cheek, but for example, playing back a DVD rip of 'The Office' from Plex at less than 1 Mbps is more than sufficient to enjoy it.

 

Video statistics are 624x352@24 MP4 codec in an AVI container, average bitrate of 943k.

Audio is MP3 container @48kHz, stereo, VBR averaging to 131k.

All together <1024Kbps aka 1 Mbps.

 

44ce772d5c864f089954ed160f2f852e.jpg

 

For me, that is a wholly acceptable amount of detail on a phone. Even mostly acceptable on my 65" DLP.

 

I'm not saying people can't enjoy better bitrates, better quality, better speeds, etc. but often times its diminishing returns. People just always "want the best" when they won't notice a difference between best and decent on screens this small.

 

Just wanted to say that 1.5 Mbps is totally usable for anything I'm trying to do.

 

This is not me advocating for people not having choice for video quality, but rather giving an example of how usable 1.5 Mbps can be more than acceptable for quality on a small screen.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

I'm an audio/video enthusiast, so I know I'm a bit biased/ Although, 720p and 1080p don't work well for me on under 3mbps speeds. That is the threshold when buffering occurs and the image seems to worsen. I also really notice differences in details of video resolution on non-native resolution displays. Since there isn't a lot of 2k content, I'd prefer a 1080p display for 1080p content, otherwise I notice the difference pretty easily. It is one of the things I'm considering getting the 6-inch 1090p AMOLED Oppo R9 Plus device for, besides the Oppo headphone amp/dac adapter I might get with it.

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That is a pretty bogus and asinine comment coming from someone who hasn't even tried it. Get over it. What is your vision at anyways? 20/20 or better?

 

I've seen 480p on a 2k screen, which isn't a good image quality, in my opinion. Although, there a many people I've read on TmoNews and the T-Mobile Reddit who agree with my viewpoint on this. Then again, there are plenty of people who don't. It is something of a very subjective issue.

 

However, I've been pretty clear here of my dislike for how John Legere does business at T-Mobile, saying one thing to the customers as though he cares about their needs, while really intending elsewise, such as the price increases, worsening deals over time, etc. After all, T-Mobile is losing ranking in reports/reviews, while Sprint continues to improve, and still offering much cheaper rates than T-Mobile.

 

BingeOn is no different as just another bad deal disguised as a good one. I know enough when seeing a good quality image that optimization isn't going to fix a lesser quality image. 

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I've seen 480p on a 2k screen, which isn't a good image quality, in my opinion. Although, there a many people I've read on TmoNews and the T-Mobile Reddit who agree with my viewpoint on this. Then again, there are plenty of people who don't. It is something of a very subjective issue.

 

However, I've been pretty clear here of my dislike for how John Legere does business at T-Mobile, saying one thing to the customers as though he cares about their needs, while really intending elsewise, such as the price increases, worsening deals over time, etc. After all, T-Mobile is losing ranking in reports/reviews, while Sprint continues to improve, and still offering much cheaper rates than T-Mobile.

 

BingeOn is no different as just another bad deal disguised as a good one. I know enough when seeing a good quality image that optimization isn't going to fix a lesser quality image. 

 

Yeah its not as sharp. However for some folks there are upsides like we just had 3 kids streaming netflix off my phone and I was able to use my laptop tethered off it at the same time and watch a show on amazon. Not bad considering it didn't touch my hot spot allowance. For me thats actually worth the tradeoff, for others its not, but then again they can turn it off as well. There was and is a lot wrong with how they implemented bingeon, but it is not without its benefits. Frankly I think they killed a great idea with a piss poor implementation, but they could still fix it. Make it opt in and zero rate absolutely all video and audio.

 

The newest generation of codecs which are seeing broad support now should nearly halve bandwidth requirements so there is the potential for bingeon to work for 720p at 1.5mbps. I've seen h265 stream at lower than that for 720p.

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Yeah its not as sharp. However for some folks there are upsides like we just had 3 kids streaming netflix off my phone and I was able to use my laptop tethered off it at the same time and watch a show on amazon. Not bad considering it didn't touch my hot spot allowance. For me thats actually worth the tradeoff, for others its not, but then again they can turn it off as well. There was and is a lot wrong with how they implemented bingeon, but it is not without its benefits. Frankly I think they killed a great idea with a piss poor implementation, but they could still fix it. Make it opt in and zero rate absolutely all video and audio.

 

The newest generation of codecs which are seeing broad support now should nearly halve bandwidth requirements so there is the potential for bingeon to work for 720p at 1.5mbps. I've seen h265 stream at lower than that for 720p.

 

Well, I suppose 720p at 1.5mbps could work, but it really needs to be implemented right. Here is what I don't understand about T-Mobile; they did an amazing job rolling out LTE and getting their network into new markets at a very rapid pace, something I admit I doubted they'd be able to do as well as they did, something I wrote about here on S4GRU yet was proven wrong in that by T-Mobile doing exactly what they'd said they'd do in the time they said it would get done. However, when it comes to their programs for customers, T-Mobile makes a real mess of things. They so often go back and make confusing and unpopular changes to many of those programs, including Jump.

 

Even if they had to up the speed to 2 mbps, in order to have 720p, it would be a much better, more accepted compromise between HD and network conservation for BingeOn, which ought to work well. Certainly the current implementation of BingeOn is plenty good for those not caring much for video quality being at HD-level, in exchange for additional viewing, especially useful for parents with kids on road trips, etc. I just think it could be done better though, as I've mentioned here plenty of times. It does seem to me that John Legere may finally be starting to see the need for compromise on this issue, as he alluded to a bit in this video, here :

 

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The point in all this is that T-Mobile is using network-side management to control the streams in order to provide the service for free. The $15 price point jump in Unlimited shows that the 1% who want unlimited will be forced to pay more, but the 99% that will be perfectly ok with 480p will gladly jump on.

 

Regardless of my personal feelings towards them, it's a great offer, and even considering my mobile usage, a good deal that I could jump on.

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Central maui is still crawling for T-Mobile.. I don't know why they're holding up on refarming ASAP.

 

Sprint is blazing so far, I've been to Kehei, and Wailuku + Kahului solid 30+Mbps each time

The only thing left that makes any sense is back haul cost or provisioning delay. 

 

With sprint not having lte for a long time when tmobile did, plus tmobiles predatory pricing spring t probably lost a lot of subs which contributes to the state of both networks. Tmo are risking losing their gains if they don't get a site or two out by hana and speed up their backhaul. There's also a dead spot by canoes beach in wahikuli which makes little sense. Let's see where they go with this, Sprint's an attractive proposition these days.

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720p is like a minimum standard these days. It just looks soooo much better. Now, what would be great is if BingOn gets providers to change their streaming format (not forced but by the desire of the service to offer the best possible IQ). Some of the newer formats could do 720p at < 1.5Mbps I'm sure.

 

I should test it. I have some H.265 on my Plex. Should see what that streams at.

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720p is like a minimum standard these days. It just looks soooo much better. Now, what would be great is if BingOn gets providers to change their streaming format (not forced but by the desire of the service to offer the best possible IQ). Some of the newer formats could do 720p at < 1.5Mbps I'm sure.

 

I should test it. I have some H.265 on my Plex. Should see what that streams at.

Maybe I'm getting old, but I have a hard time telling a difference between 480p and 720p in the YouTube app, especially on a 5.7 inch screen. I can tell slight differences. I wouldn't call it a large gap. Current codes like VP9 are really good at maximizing quality on 480p.

 

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

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Maybe I'm getting old, but I have a hard time telling a difference between 480p and 720p in the YouTube app, especially on a 5.7 inch screen. I can tell slight differences. I wouldn't call it a large gap. Current codes like VP9 are really good at maximizing quality on 480p.

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

The difference between 480p and 1440p is monumental. For those that say they can't tell the difference need to get their eyes checked.
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The difference between 480p and 1440p is monumental. For those that say they can't tell the difference need to get their eyes checked.

lol what did I read? I was comparing 480p to 720p on a 5.7 inch screen. I see the difference between 480p and 1440p, that wasn't the comparison I was making. Now maybe I should book my eye exam. [emoji23] [emoji23] [emoji23]

 

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

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The difference between 480p and 1440p is monumental. For those that say they can't tell the difference need to get their eyes checked.

Well considering that you are scaling at a perfect 3x from 854x480 to 2560x1440, I'd probably say it looks pretty decent considering a linear upscale.

 

But then again I wouldn't call something on a phone a 'reference display' either so I have a lower expectation.

 

My point is that at 480p, and even less, I can resolve all of the detail that I need, for a fraction of the bandwidth.

 

If you want the best for having the bests sake, go right ahead, but I'm not enjoying my video any less because it's not 1:1 pixel mapping.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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720p is like a minimum standard these days. It just looks soooo much better. Now, what would be great is if BingOn gets providers to change their streaming format (not forced but by the desire of the service to offer the best possible IQ). Some of the newer formats could do 720p at < 1.5Mbps I'm sure.

 

I should test it. I have some H.265 on my Plex. Should see what that streams at.

 

If 720p could work at 1.5mbps, even if T-Mobile might have to bump it up to 2mbps in order to minimize buffering (no one wants their video watching automatically pausing here and there just to load, I especially hate buffering), that would be great for T-Mobile to do. I agree 720p really ought to be standard. However, if T-Mobile were to increase it to 3mbps which I think is perfectly reasonable, then they could pretty easily allow 1080p video at that speed.

 

I think what T-Mobile would be better off doing instead of using BingeOn as a perk for limited data plans, is to have three unlimited data plans based on speed caps, since they basically already are doing so through BingeOn. Of course, this is what I've been advocating for on S4GRU a very long time now. A 1.5 mbps plan for $45 monthly, A 3 mbps plan for $60 monthly, and an uncapped plan for $75 monthly - same as Sprint. 

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