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    • By S4GRU
      by Scott Johnson
      Sprint 4G Rollout Updates
      Thursday, January 26, 2012 - 12:01 AM MST
       
      Many of us enjoy the freedom that rooting or jailbreaking our phones gives. Adding custom ROMs, removing “bloatware” or Carrier IQ, and adding additional controls are just the start. We knowingly take the risk that that we may turn our phone into a brick, and our warranty will likely not cover repair or replacement. But will we knowingly commit a criminal act to unlock our phones?
      Apple has claimed that jailbreaking the iPhone was in conflict with copyright laws. Given the amount of time they spent locking down iOS, it’s no surprise they oppose it. In July 2010, the U.S. Copyright Office eventually decided that jailbreaking and rooting was not a violation of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA), as long as it was not done with the intent of circumventing copyright. However, this decision was not permanent. If it is allowed to expire next month, jailbreaking and rooting could be considered breach of the DMCA.
      Development websites like XDA started out with the public perception that they were underground gatherings of hackers and pirates. Since the U.S. Copyright Office published the finding that jailbreaking and rooting was not illegal, those development websites have become widely popular and have largely changed the public's perception. Even Steve Kondik, aka “Cyanogen”, creator of the widely popular Android ROM CyanogenMod was hired by Samsung.
      Due to the liberties that millions of us enjoy about to be removed due to the sunseting DCMA, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has begun a campaign to keep our phones free. They are undertaking a campaign to convince the U.S. Copyright Office that we should have the right to unlock not only our smartphones, but our tablets and video game consoles. They have a petition that they will send to the U.S. Copyright Office, and they are asking for Concrete examples of legal uses of jailbreaking that “will help show the Copyright Office why they should renew and expand the exemptions for jailbreaking.”
      You can visit the EFF’s jailbreaking page here: https://www.eff.org/...ee-your-devices
       
      Photo courtesy of iphonefreakz.com
       
      Source: http://www.phonearen...l-again_id26246
    • By S4GRU
      by Scott Johnson
      Sprint 4G Rollout Updates
      Friday, February 3, 2012 - 2:00 PM MST
       
      The iPhone is something many people see as a status symbol. Many who have never owned one, long for their upgrade date so they can go out and buy the "exclusive" iPhone that they have been denied access to for years. Even some who had the iPhone, and then switched carriers, long to repurchase another. Yes, the iPhone is a well made smartphone with access to a loaded app store, and has many desirable features. But is it really better than Windows Phone, Blackberry or Android models?
      When Apple entered into a contract with AT&T, they remanufactured the RAZR craze and how the artificial scarcity of the device created such huge demand. The RAZR was a good device, and you may argue it was well ahead of other phones at the time of its release, but the other manufacturers caught up quickly. Apple used a similar strategy and it has paid off immensely. The iPhone is now available on the top 3 carriers in the U.S., but is still seen as a status symbol in many circles. As if only a few people have access to it. One could make a strong argument that the Samsung Galaxy SII is a superior smartphone, but still many customers line up to get the iPhone instead, because their inner hoarder says they NEED it, and the products perceived coolness and limited availability only add to the whole experience.
      The concept of artificial scarcity is simple. You take a product that is plentifully available to manufacture in mass, but limit distribution to a limited time, limited area, or in the case of the iPhone, limited retail outlets.
      The strategy has worked perfect for Disney. Why let your movies make the gradual descent to the $3.99 Wal-Mart bargain bin? Just keep "taking them out of the vault" and offering them at full price for a few months every couple years and people pull their credit cards out to pay $17.99 for an 85 year old movie and thank Disney for "allowing" them the opportunity to purchase Snow White. Oh, and you get to be a part of a limited privileged club.
      Another notable example is McDonald's McRib. If it was on the menu full time, many people either wouldn't bother going to McDonalds or would order something else, but artificial scarcity commands us to rush in to McDonalds and get several McRibs at a time because we won't have another chance at it for another year. What do we end up with, besides a belly ache and a reason why we don't normally eat at McDonalds?
      We should be immune to this form of advertising by now, as we are constantly inundated with limited time availability and special edition products all around us. However it is still alive and well here on Planet Earth, because it still works. Big time.
      Can Apple keep the air of exclusivity over its iPhone as it continues to broaden its distribution? Or will smartphone buyers move on to other devices? Only time will tell. But many doubt that Apple will play its hand as well in an era post Steve Jobs.
       
       
       
      Photos Courtesy of iPhone5rumor.net
    • By danlodish345
      hello i am here to start a htread for the ipad 9.7 inch 2017 edition
    • By S4GRU
      CONTEST CLOSED!!!
       
      LIMITED TIME PROMOTION!!!
      YOU COULD POSSIBLY WIN A NEW iPHONE 8 IF YOU DONATE TO SUPPORT S4GRU
      **OR COMPARABLY PRICED ANDROID DEVICE!**

       
      The Goal
       
      The goal is to have some fun and raise some money to support S4GRU.  If we can raise enough money to cover the device by 8 PM Pacific Time on Friday, October 27th, then we will schedule the raffle.  The contest winner can select the color from what's available.  The winner can also select the carrier (not limited to Sprint).
       
      The Plan
       
      If we are able to raise at least as much as the device costs us plus incidental charges like taxes and shipping, we will add any additional proceeds to the S4GRU general fund.  If we can't raise enough, we will provide opportunity to refund.
       
      And which model it ends up being depends on how much money we can raise.  If we raise just $750, it will be the iPhone 8 64GB ($699 value).  For each additional $500 we collect beyond $750, we will give another $100 in toward upgrading to the iPhone 8+, iPhone X or memory/apple care upgrades.  The winner can select any variant or upgrades, but they will need to pay any cost difference, from the prize value.  Increases in prize vales will be announced in this thread.  THE WINNER CAN SELECT AN ANDROID DEVICE IN LIEU OF AN iPHONE, IF THEY CHOOSE.  Like a NOTE 8, Pixel 2, LG V30, Essential Phone, etc.  Equal or lesser value to the winning iPhone prize.
       
      The Raffle
       
      Each donation to the iPHONE 8 PROMO will receive a range of numbers, equating to one number for every dollar you donate.  The minimum donation to the cause is $10.  If you donate $10, you get a range of 10 numbers.  If you donate $100, you get a range of 100 numbers.  The more you donate, the greater your chances of winning.  There is no limit to the amount you can donate...in amount or frequency.  But it needs to be at least $10 per donation to the iPHONE 8 PROMO.
       
      You will receive a Private Message (or email if you are not a S4GRU member) from S4GRU giving you your numbers after your donation.  Most likely within 8-12 hours, but could take a day or two.
       
      We will stop accepting donations at 8PM Pacific on Friday, October 27th.  Any donations received after that time will not be counted toward this promotion.  Date and time of the drawing will be announced after the close of donations acceptance.  We will select a number at random using my random number generator app in my Pixel XL.  You do not need to be present in the live chat to win.
      All money donated to the raffle will be credited to your S4GRU accumulation total and will count toward future upgrades.  If you are not currently a S4GRU Sponsor, you will be given Sponsor status for six months with the minimum $10 raffle donation.

      To Enter
       
      Go to the S4GRU PayPal Donation section by clicking on this hyperlink or by by clicking the donate button in the upper right hand corner of most S4GRU pages.  Enter an amount you want to donate for this promotion, minimum $10.  In the notes section, tell us your screen name and type iPHONE 8 PROMO.  If you forget to do that in the PayPal donation, then send me a Message.  You will get a message response giving you your raffle numbers by 11 PM Pacific on 10/27/2017.  If you don't get them, message me.

      Rules
       
      S4GRU Membership is not required to enter.  S4GRU Staff Members and their families are ineligible to win.  Dollars spent on the promotion will count toward future member upgrades.  There is no cash value of the prize.  S4GRU will pay the shipping costs to send the prize to the winner.  The winner will be offered options as to network selections, device options and colors based on availability within the winning prize amount.   S4GRU cannot guarantee availability of any products, types, varieties or colors.  Although many devices can be used on several networks, S4GRU cannot guarantee operability on any network.  A SIM card purchase for the winner's preferred network may be required and is not paid by S4GRU.  This contest is void where prohibited.  Pre-scheduled automatic recurring payments to S4GRU during the contest period will not be eligible for entry in the contest.  Should the winner desire a phone other than the iPhone product offered at contest conclusion, they can request an Android device of equal or lesser value.  If a device more expensive than the iPhone offered is desired, the winner will need to pay the difference before the product will be ordered. If winner selects a less expensive phone than the prize offered, S4GRU will retain those funds as a donation.  The contest may be subject to amendment, extension or cancellation as necessary.  S4GRU reserves the right to provide a gift card or PayPal payment of the value of the prize for convenience or difficulty in sourcing the prize occurs.

      Photo Courtesy of Phone Arena
       

       

  • Posts

    • Quite a number of us have been looking at this issue for months, which I call Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS). For those unfamiliar it eliminates the special 8T8R market GCI and reorders all GCI band sectors first by sector then by band.  Without software help this is uncomprehensible to most people. It took a while to get a reasonable sample of data from all sectors from various sites in various tracked markets.  Sprint was also making changes and initially had various models in different markets.  This has only been seen in Samsung markets, although I have looked at data from ALU and Ericsson markets. It should be noted that Mini Macros and B41 small cells are not affected.  It now seems to have stabilized for a while around what is shown in ingenium's chart: Implementation is growing and is getting faster.  Through the many logs I analyze I have seen it pop up in more and more markets.  Still uncertain as to the reason.  The latest theory is for 4x4 MIMO and 256 QAM with a long line of failed theories behind that one.  There are areas of uncertainty surrounding 1) counties with portions of various b41 radius on different frequencies and 2) the handling of 4th and 5th carriers.  We are hoping that Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS) in Columbus and Cincinnati will soon spread to such areas so we have a better data sample.  Currently we only have the area around Youngstown to work with in this regard.  Joski1624 has been key in this along with ingenium. I have handled this with a cutover date for GCIs and tracking expired b41 GCIs.  Early on implementation stretched out over a couple of weeks, but it now seems entire sites are done at once.  I process logs first to find any Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS) sites which are ranked into Yes, Maybe, and No.  "Yes" is determined unique GCI endings which can be increased if you have detailed spreadsheet data on the site that is reasonably current.  These become Approved SGS sites with the earliest one becoming the cutover date which is stored for future use.  "Maybe" are unique GCI endings that don't have an expected EARFCN.  Many of these are transition errors but a signification number are for sites where more data is needed.  These become possible SGS sites and are flagged for followup.  The approved SGS site data is then processed for new carriers and missing/changed PCIs.  B41 is converted back to its old GCI including GCI sectors for this purpose plus to provide data for the expired B41 sites.  The expired b41 sites is also used for Mini Macro GCIs that have been replaced with 8T8R in case they appear elsewhere in the future.  This effort allows old spreadsheets to be retained.    Should a market fully convert (none found so far) to Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS) it will be worth revisiting this multi-step process to simplify it.  The unresolved issue of sites in counties with portions of various b41 radius on different frequencies is the most difficult for SCP.  Sheets may have to track earfcns for those areas and/or store the SGS sectors for them to be properly rebuilt for SCP "national" logs.  Markets with sheets will want to let SCP know the approved SGS sites as users may not be on the right band or sector to know independently. This way regular sites could be stored in their compressed format while only the SGS sites would need more entries. SCP may need to track SGS sites for markets without sheets based on past key GCI sectors.  This may also be the right time for SCP to allow the direct importation of true site lat/longs as RSRP allows for easier detection of EARFCNs in transition.  Another issue that would help is a more resilient error handling (retries) for rooted modem earfcns.  Currently this is often tripped by other apps such as LTE Discovery (used for its airplane mode like ability) or Network Signal Guru  (for bandwidth, MIMO and QAM detection).  Presently you must exit and restart SCP to regain EARFCN detection in such cases. Based on past history, it is safe to assume that Sprint will not totally upgrade all sites in a market to Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS), but  it will likely dominate  -- it will just take a while in true Sprint fashion.  Many of us S4Gru folks have retained older phones  (I have 4) for assigning to different signal tracking purposes.  The general public often has older phones just like these as their main phone.  Without Sequential GCI Sectors (SGS) support older phones in SGS areas may soon become worthless for interactive signal detection and learning. 
    • Here's my multi-point theory on why Sprint isn't roaming on VZW for LTE: Fewer Sprint phones have B13 than B12, and at the point that you're roaming on another carrier you want that low-band signal, most of which is still B13 on VZW. VZW charges more for data roaming than AT&T does, and might not even let Sprint do LTE roaming. This is bolstered by the fact that e.g. FreedomPop uses AT&T rather than Verizon as the underlying network for its stuff...they wouldn't use it if it was expensive. Also, add the PH-1 to the list of unlocked/BYOD phones that likely have the same firmware as the Sprint version, and thus get WiFi calling (though the PH-1 doesn't have Calling Plus; fingers crossed that I get VoLTE). I've been in a few RF dead zones (yay hotels!) lately but have seen the phone drop down to native eHRPD rather than swap to roaming on e.g. T-Mo band 12, so my guess is that I won't see aggressive roaming to LTE until the VoLTE soft launch, and maybe not even then.
    • I'll be heading to the UK in a few months and am trying to figure out whether it's worth it to switch off of Open World (this'll be my first time out of the country, so it's not like I'm using CA/MX data anyway) and grabbing a week pass for while I'm there. Specifically, does anyone know which network Sprint roams on in the UK, and whether it's LTE roaming? If the roaming situation is less than ideal, I figure I'll keep Open World and swing by an EE or Three store to pick up a local SIM, using my 3-cent-per-MB Open World data to get there. But if I can get solid coverage on LTE, I'll gladly do the week pass thing to save the hassle of finding a SIM.
    • Pretty sure they can slowly repurpose LTE portion of M-MIMO to 5G nr so that shouldn't be a problem in the very long run. Just like Clear equipment, and those have served their purpose quite well over the last 6 years.
    • It is disappointing that Sprint does not have a not Massive MIMO 5G option.  I assume the price would be significantly less for less robust solution that would allow for both 4G and 5NR.  This would allow more places to have 5NR sooner.
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