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9 hours ago, Yuhfhrh said:

In Houston, T-Mobile could probably get Verizon to swap their AWS-3 I block for T-Mobile's PCS E block, giving them both 10x10 contiguous.

I'm not sure Verizon wants to do this just yet. It all depends on what percentage of their mobile phones can support B66.

But definitely something to keep an eye on down the road.

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It sucks ATT has PCS F&C, which basically forces the G block to remain 5x5 for T-Mobile as I doubt ATT would ever want to move.

As it has happened in the past, it wouldn't surprise me to see TMUS help AT&T in one market in exchange for AT&T helping T-Mobile in this market. 

Having said that, it is not going to be easy. Outside of the FCC stepping in, I'm not sure T-Mobile will ever be able to defragment their entire holdings nation-wide.

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6 hours ago, greenbastard said:

I'm not sure Verizon wants to do this just yet. It all depends on what percentage of their mobile phones can support B66.

Verizon would be getting the PCS E block in this scenario, which I'm sure they'd much prefer over their line 5x5 AWS-3. That actually moves Verizon from 5x5 AWS-3 & 15x15 in PCS, to 20x20 PCS. T-Mobile from 5x5 PCS & 5x5 AWS-3, to 10x10 AWS-3.

Though the covered area of the PCS and AWS licenses are slightly different, I don't see any other swaps possible in the Houston area, except like you said if other markets are brought into the equation.

The dream would be for the FCC to take up a forced spectrum defragmentation project across the country, and just force swaps to make everyone contiguous. I'm not sure if all the carriers would actually like that to happen or not.

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2 minutes ago, Yuhfhrh said:

Verizon would be getting the PCS E block in this scenario, which I'm sure they'd much prefer over their line 5x5 AWS-3. That actually moves Verizon from 5x5 AWS-3 & 15x15 in PCS, to 20x20 PCS. T-Mobile from 5x5 PCS & 5x5 AWS-3, to 10x10 AWS-3.

Though the covered area of the PCS and AWS licenses are slightly different, I don't see any other swaps possible in the Houston area, expect like you said if other markets are brought into the equation.

The dream would be for the FCC to take up a forced spectrum defragmentation project across the country, and just force swaps to make everyone contiguous. I'm not sure if all the carriers would actually like that to happen or not.

Another thing they could work on is remapping B5 to be 10x10+15x15 in areas where AT&T or VZW don't already control the whole thing. Whoever "wins" the extra 5x5 should be happy to give up 5x5 of PCS or AWS to the owner of the other half of the band.

Right now, there's a sizable advantage to owning both sides of B5, but that's harmful for low-band competition.

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13 hours ago, Yuhfhrh said:

 That actually moves Verizon from 5x5 AWS-3 & 15x15 in PCS, to 20x20 PCS. T-Mobile from 5x5 PCS & 5x5 AWS-3, to 10x10 AWS-3.

 

In Houston? I believe Verizon only owns 10x10 in the PCS band, don't they? I know from the A-F blocks, T-Mobile owns 30 Mhz, Sprint owns 20 Mhz, AND AT&T owns 50 Mhz.

This leaves 20 Mhz unaccounted for (which I assume belongs to Verizon).

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7 hours ago, greenbastard said:

In Houston? I believe Verizon only owns 10x10 in the PCS band, don't they? I know from the A-F blocks, T-Mobile owns 30 Mhz, Sprint owns 20 Mhz, AND AT&T owns 50 Mhz.

This leaves 20 Mhz unaccounted for (which I assume belongs to Verizon).

Ah, I guess ATT has 10MHz of the PCS B block then? I assumed all of B was Verizon.

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  • 4 weeks later...

5 MHz of AWS-3 is now live near me, in addition to the two 10 MHz carriers in AWS-1. Unfortunately it looks like my S20 can't aggregate three B66 carriers, so the benefit I get is more network breathing room in general rather than higher peak speeds. Thinking it would absolutely be worth T-Mobile's while to swap spectrum to get some contiguity there, ven if that means swapping 10 MHz of AWS-1 for 10 MHz of AWS-3.

In the mean time, AT&T has 15 MHz each of B2 and B4, and appears to be running DSS on most of B5, allowing for a whopping 20 mHz channel there, shared with NR. My guess is that anyone not on FirstNet with B5 on their phone will use B5 as the PCC here as a result by default, so other bands may have a decent amount of upload capacity unused for folks who band-select to them (I believe AT&T's UL-CA usage is still hit-or-miss).

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  • 2 weeks later...

Seems like T-Mobile has expanded their Band 2 from 10x10 to 15x15 in the A block. The A block used to be 10x10 for LTE and 5x5 for WCDMA. This likely means that the WCDMA carrier was moved to Sprint's D block or E block. I don't have root to check at the moment. 

This merger is going faster than I thought.

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Finally something NR-related! I just saw B71 aggregated with n71 on my S20. Previously I'd only see a single B2 or B66 carrier aggregated, but this time I got 10 MHz B2, 10 MHz n71, 5 MHz B66, and 5 MHz B71, netting me download speeds a bit above 80 Mbps. I can't hit those speeds on LTE alone from this location unless I switch to Sprint B41.

I also saw a higher SNR than usual on both n71 and B71, so I need to check tonight on whether T-Mobile just lit a site nearer me with band 71.

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Checked things out and it looks like this isn't a band 71 retrofit...just the same site, configured a bit better.

That particular carrier combination disappeared for a few days, but now it appears to be back, this time with more reliable uploads. Still seeing a bunch of jitter whenever I'm on 5G, but speeds are now 70+ Mbps when you were doing well to get 40 Mbps before. A god chunk of that speed has to be coming from the B66 carrier that won't normally get selected because it's 5x5 and there are two other carriers at 10 MHz in B4 (MFBI to B66) here.

Feels a bit silly that 4CA (including NR) nets you all of 30 MHz of spectrum, but speeds are a little better than 4+4+2 at 10 MHz apiece so I'll take it. FWIW the anchor band is still definitely B2 here...B71 is just aggregated...but that's fine because TMo has B2 on way more sites (so no coverage benefit to SA or a low-band PCC) and the channel is double the width of the B71 channel.

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