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AT&T roaming prioritized over Sprint coverage after PRL update.

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My opinion is that they're doing this to test getting off EVDO and reallocating those carriers to LTE. It's about time, roaming or not. They will probably issue a new PRL so that instead of prioritizing AT&T they prioritize T-Mobile after August 1st. 1x800 will stay for a while. I just hope with or without the merger they put 1x800 and LTE 26 on all their sites, old and new. That way they can minimize roaming.

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Unfortunately B26 isn't possible for the foreseeable future for certain areas of the Canadian IBEZ, areas in and around Erie, PA and Buffalo.  There's not enough spectrum for more than a 1x800 channel (CDMA Channel 626).

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I was out today near Kutztown, PA, and this particular area is a Sprint dead zone (was on a back road). I noticed I had the R icon, and the signal meter had an H next to it instead of 3G or LTE. Signal Check said I was on GSM. The about phone menu said HSPA+ roaming. I couldn't make a phone call and I don't think data was working either. I have a Pixel 2. It eventually went to 3G and then Sprint LTE. cf7be1463683288a8a992abfaec8f73b.jpg271bf2b2eac4eb913e4d49e69021c3d9.jpg

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1 hour ago, Joski1624 said:

Unfortunately B26 isn't possible for the foreseeable future for certain areas of the Canadian IBEZ, areas in and around Erie, PA and Buffalo.  There's not enough spectrum for more than a 1x800 channel (CDMA Channel 626).

I thought there is a 3Mhz of B26 available on the Canadian IBEZ.

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1 hour ago, bigsnake49 said:

I thought there is a 3Mhz of B26 available on the Canadian IBEZ.

Yes, you're correct.  However, the Erie to Rochester swath only has 3MHz available for deployment.  Only 3 MHz.  So it can only be CDMA or LTE.  As the total width available is 3x3.  Not enough for LTE and CDMA together.  And there is still an outstanding exception for the Buffalo/Niagara region.  That still requires further coordination with ISED Canada.

Robert

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Yes, you're correct.  However, the Erie to Rochester swath only has 3MHz available for deployment.  Only 3 MHz.  So it can only be CDMA or LTE.  As the total width available is 3x3.  Not enough for LTE and CDMA together.  And there is still an outstanding exception for the Buffalo/Niagara region.  That still requires further coordination with ISED Canada.

Robert

I can verify that from a trip this last winter. West of and including Burlington Vermont is only b26 3x3 ( no 1x800). They you run into 1x800 only after Rochester for a number of miles into Ohio on I-90. This is because Toronto had preference in historical 800 mhz negotiations going back many many decades. It is Canada's largest city.

 

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I was out today near Kutztown, PA, and this particular area is a Sprint dead zone (was on a back road). I noticed I had the R icon, and the signal meter had an H next to it instead of 3G or LTE. Signal Check said I was on GSM. The about phone menu said HSPA+ roaming. I couldn't make a phone call and I don't think data was working either. I have a Pixel 2. It eventually went to 3G and then Sprint LTE. cf7be1463683288a8a992abfaec8f73b.jpg271bf2b2eac4eb913e4d49e69021c3d9.jpg

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Interesting. I think SCP is incorrect here. AT&T shut down their GSM network a year ago. It's only WCDMA/HSPA and LTE now.

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4 hours ago, dkyeager said:

I can verify that from a trip this last winter. West of and including Burlington Vermont is only b26 3x3 ( no 1x800). They you run into 1x800 only after Rochester for a number of miles into Ohio on I-90. This is because Toronto had preference in historical 800 mhz negotiations going back many many decades. It is Canada's largest city.

 

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Why do they not run 3x3 L800 throughout border region 2? It seems bizzare to me that they change from 3x3 L800 to 1x800 at Rochester...

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8 hours ago, S4GRU said:

Yes, you're correct.  However, the Erie to Rochester swath only has 3MHz available for deployment.  Only 3 MHz.  So it can only be CDMA or LTE.  As the total width available is 3x3.  Not enough for LTE and CDMA together.  And there is still an outstanding exception for the Buffalo/Niagara region.  That still requires further coordination with ISED Canada.

Robert

1.4 MHz LTE + 1.25 MHz CDMA 1x voice will work within a 3x3 block. Don't think any Sprint equipment are tested for a 1.4 MHz bandwidth though...

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That's true, they could deploy 1.4 MHz b26 and reserve it basically just for VoLTE.

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Back to issue at hand... I got a call back from Sprint support in Oklahoma City this morning. The tech tried to tell me my roaming issues were caused by "one of the  two towers" that I connected to at home was down from Friday to Sunday. I bounce off of three towers at home and all were performing like normal all weekend. So not entirely sure what to think of that.

I also asked why I was roaming on AT&T when USCC has coverage in the area and the phone should prefer that signal. She proceeded to tell me they can't control which network we roam on. I told her that was wrong. She then told me it didn't matter since no matter what network I roamed on there would be a 100MB cap. I told her that was also wrong, as USCC and the other main extended LTE partners do not have a hard cap, and the data is treated as native. She had no idea what I was talking about. I even directed her to look at the coverage map since it explicitly states that but it didn't sound like she believed me.

I tried to ask her about the PRL update from last week and if it could be causing the problem but she wanted me to try another PRL update to see if it changed anything.

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Posted (edited)

I think you had the same Rep from Sprint Executive Customer Service that I had reviewing my service issue  ticket.      It's so frustrating when they don't even know to most basic of detail about anything, similar to the offshore regular reps you get when you call the regular customer service number.  Granted, not all are incapable, but sadly, most are.  They are in a position to try to help us with our problems either with the network or with our equipment.    Shamefully they become another problem to have to deal with, which results in giving up in frustration and hoping something either fails catastrophically with the network or gets upgraded and fixes the issue.    

Edited by dro1984

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4 hours ago, Dkoellerwx said:

Back to issue at hand... I got a call back from Sprint support in Oklahoma City this morning. The tech tried to tell me my roaming issues were caused by "one of the  two towers" that I connected to at home was down from Friday to Sunday. I bounce off of three towers at home and all were performing like normal all weekend. So not entirely sure what to think of that.

I also asked why I was roaming on AT&T when USCC has coverage in the area and the phone should prefer that signal. She proceeded to tell me they can't control which network we roam on. I told her that was wrong. She then told me it didn't matter since no matter what network I roamed on there would be a 100MB cap. I told her that was also wrong, as USCC and the other main extended LTE partners do not have a hard cap, and the data is treated as native. She had no idea what I was talking about. I even directed her to look at the coverage map since it explicitly states that but it didn't sound like she believed me.

I tried to ask her about the PRL update from last week and if it could be causing the problem but she wanted me to try another PRL update to see if it changed anything.

That's sprint customer service for you, a year ago I got so fed up I got connected to a sprint engineer who understood everything I was saying it was amazing. Two nerds talking dBm etc was fantastic, I wish their regular customer service was that knowledgeable.

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Most simple customer support issues I've had in the past have been solved quickly and with little issue on either side. These more technical issues definitely throw them for a loop though.

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On 7/25/2018 at 8:15 PM, ingenium said:

Interesting. I think SCP is incorrect here. AT&T shut down their GSM network a year ago. It's only WCDMA/HSPA and LTE now.

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
 

I've used SignalCheck on an AT&T phone.  I think it just shows GSM because the radio is in GSM/UMTS/etc mode.  It looks like it was connected to HSPA.

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I don't think that's the case. For me, SCP will correctly show WCDMA, HSPA, and EDGE (didn't have a WCDMA screenshot easily accessible).

0e2ce101dccd2860231802853f6160b5.jpg

8c4a1ec62bc39e0b0440f9550914ba81.jpg

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7 minutes ago, ingenium said:

I don't think that's the case. For me, SCP will correctly show WCDMA, HSPA, and EDGE (didn't have a WCDMA screenshot easily accessible).


Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
 

I was just going from memory.  I must've remembered it wrong.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, ingenium said:

I don't think that's the case. For me, SCP will correctly show WCDMA, HSPA, and EDGE (didn't have a WCDMA screenshot easily accessible).


Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
 

I've seen some cheap Samsung phones display WCDMA as GSM on SCP as well. I think it depends on the phone.

Edited by greenbastard

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I've seen some cheap Samsung phones display WCDMA as GSM on SCP as well. I think it depends on the phone.
I have a Google Pixel 2. Certainly wasn't cheap!!!

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I've noticed this recently where I'm at. There's a valley in the middle of my job that's a LTE dead zone, it used to just drop to Sprint 3G. This week, it started to grasp USCC LTE roaming instead of the 3G signal. So I do wonder if this is a conscious decision by Sprint.

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The thing many of you all seem to be missing is that previously any Sprint signal would immediately override any roaming partner signal. 

I'm pretty sure many of you that experienced this also experienced in the past where a crappy Sprint CDMA 1x signal that's basically unusable would constantly kick you off a usable partner network. Sprint changing over to a setup where partner LTE networks would still be in use where Sprint still has a 1x/EVDO signal is in general a good thing for LTE on network time and for sanity checks as devices would not constantly hop between good roaming and terrible native connections .

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22 minutes ago, lilotimz said:

Sprint changing over to a setup where partner LTE networks would still be in use where Sprint still has a 1x/EVDO signal is in general a good thing for LTE on network time and for sanity checks as devices would not constantly hop between good roaming and terrible native connections .

This. 

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I'm up north at a friend's cabin. They told me before arriving at all carriers have weak/spotty signal except AT&T.
Since arriving I've been roaming on AT&T all weekend. Data is not fast but usable. And I'm fine with that. 65cd42eca9210300083a243042cfa3c7.jpg

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On 7/26/2018 at 4:10 PM, Dkoellerwx said:

Back to issue at hand... I got a call back from Sprint support in Oklahoma City this morning. The tech tried to tell me my roaming issues were caused by "one of the  two towers" that I connected to at home was down from Friday to Sunday. I bounce off of three towers at home and all were performing like normal all weekend. So not entirely sure what to think of that.

I also asked why I was roaming on AT&T when USCC has coverage in the area and the phone should prefer that signal. She proceeded to tell me they can't control which network we roam on. I told her that was wrong. She then told me it didn't matter since no matter what network I roamed on there would be a 100MB cap. I told her that was also wrong, as USCC and the other main extended LTE partners do not have a hard cap, and the data is treated as native. She had no idea what I was talking about. I even directed her to look at the coverage map since it explicitly states that but it didn't sound like she believed me.

I tried to ask her about the PRL update from last week and if it could be causing the problem but she wanted me to try another PRL update to see if it changed anything.

Sounds exactly like the call I had with tech support back when I was trying to sort out extended roaming with Appalachian wireless. Even second-tier support seemed to not understand what extended roaming really meant. However on a more exciting note, for the last few days I've been holding Appalachian B12 LTE while still connected to Sprint 800. I am one happy camper!

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On 7/28/2018 at 2:13 PM, lilotimz said:

The thing many of you all seem to be missing is that previously any Sprint signal would immediately override any roaming partner signal. 

I'm pretty sure many of you that experienced this also experienced in the past where a crappy Sprint CDMA 1x signal that's basically unusable would constantly kick you off a usable partner network. Sprint changing over to a setup where partner LTE networks would still be in use where Sprint still has a 1x/EVDO signal is in general a good thing for LTE on network time and for sanity checks as devices would not constantly hop between good roaming and terrible native connections .

Funny you should mention that, my mother (on a Sprint BYOD) noticed that it was easier to connect to US Cellular LTE last week than it had been since Shentel lit up too far to get more than weak 1X 800.  Is there any confirmation that they've changed the policy beyond just the evidence of it we're seeing here?

- Trip

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